Works by 25 leading British artists will feature in the Grenfell Tower: Benefit Auction on the Artsy website from Tuesday July 18 to Tuesday August 1, with all proceeds going to the Dispossessed Fund set up to help those affected by last month’s horrifying fire.
Organised by art adviser Lucy Meakin in collaboration with Artsy, the lots read like an A-Z of the UK’s contemporary art scene. Jake and Dinos Chapman are here with Unhappy Meal (starting price £1,000), a handcoloured etching of macabre illustrations on a deconstructed McDonald’s Happy Meal box; Michael Craig-Martin has submitted one of his vividly coloured images of familiar objects, called Sunglasses (from £1,500); and photographer Jüergen Teller’s cosily domestic giclée print Kitten (from £3,500) has a particular poignancy when you learn that his studio looks directly onto the tower itself.
There is also work by Tracey Emin, and by Cornelia Parker, whose Black Tulip (from £500) was made by placing a glass tumbler containing a white tulip onto a photogravure plate then exposing it to a raked UV light, transforming the humble tulip into a highly valued black one. Ian Davenport, meanwhile, is represented by Colour Splat Cloud (from £1,000), an example of his more recent experiments in applying paint with a syringe.
The auction’s aim is, of course, to raise as much money as possible for those affected by the fire, and to do so it is setting its starting prices lower than retail, giving potential buyers the maximum opportunity to bid.