Image: Gilbert & George
June 25 2011
It attracts up to 800,000 visitors a year, and with the increased footfall expected in London in 2012, the Serpentine Gallery is hoping to build on its popularity with the opening of a new space, the Serpentine Sackler Gallery, next year.
To be housed near the main gallery in Kensington Gardens in a Grade II listed building due to be renovated and extended by world-renowned architect Zaha Hadid, the project is still in need of funding, which is why 46 notable artists (among them contemporary designer Ron Arad, artist duo Gilbert & George and sculptor Anish Kapoor) have donated works for a special auction at Sotheby’s in aid of the new space (all proceeds from the sale will support the Serpentine Sackler Gallery), taking place on Thursday June 30.
The works going under the hammer range from quirky sculptural numbers, such as Jeff Koons’ Inflatable Flower, to covetable canvas pieces, including Damien Hirst’s Beautiful Magnificent Everyone Loves a Good Romance Painting (made with real butterflies, scatterings of cubic zirconia and household gloss), and a Gilbert & George mixed-media piece (pictured), simply entitled GB, featuring manipulated images of the famous pair atop a map of London’s Spitalfields area – a nod to the duo’s home turf, no doubt, but with a guide price of £80,000-£120,000, the piece is likely to put Kensington firmly on the map too.