Artists Draw A Line Under Torture: has gathered together leading artists uniting to fundraise by selling their work at Freedom from Torture: The Art Auction. Edmund de Waal (Top Photo) is the latest big name to join top contemporary artists including Jake and Dinos Chapman, Michael Craig-Martin, Antony Gormley, Julian Opie, Cornelia Parker, Paula Rego and Lisa Ruyter who have donated pieces for auction to support Freedom from Torture’s work with survivors of torture who have fled tyrannical regimes around the world.
Alan Cristea Gallery has also kindly donated works by Sir Peter Blake, David Hockney and John Hoyland to be auctioned at the event at the Studio Spaces venue in Wapping on Wednesday, November 13.
Ceramicist de Waal’s piece You are Here, which comprises of six porcelain vessels with gold on an aluminium shelf, completes the catalogue of 80 lots from some of the world’s most prominent contemporary artists. As well as works by famous artists, pieces created by members of Freedom from Torture’s Open Art Studio will also be for sale.
Many survivors of torture find it impossible to speak about the horrors they have experienced but are able to use art to bring painful memories to the surface so the healing process can begin. Through their work our Open Art Studio clients are able to express themselves and the complexity of their emotions such as anger, sadness, terror and fear as well as joy and hope.
An Open Art Studio client who has donated his painting High Moon to the auction, said: “Painting in the Open Art Studio is always helpful – it is like a painkiller. I’m so proud and happy to put my work in the auction alongside the other artists.” Attendees will be able to bid for one-off works of art and limited edition prints in a silent auction throughout the evening as well as a dynamic live auction conducted by Christie’s International Director of Auctioneering Hugh Edmeades.
Mr Edmeades said: “I’m absolutely delighted to be supporting Freedom from Torture’s vital work. The Art Auction is a fantastic opportunity to help survivors of torture and to go home with an incredible piece of contemporary art in the process. Freedom form Torture is unique in the way it rehabilitates people who have been broken by unspeakable acts of violence and Christie’s is proud to support its work.” The last event, held in 2011, raised £110,000 from the sale of works of art and through donations which went towards funding FfT’s work to rehabilitate survivors of torture.
Mayfair’s Alan Cristea Gallery has been supporting Freedom from Torture: The Art Auction by donating works for the last eight years and represents established international contemporary artists, artists’ estates and emerging artists. This year the gallery has again donated works by leading artists from its private collection.
Alan Cristea said: “Every day survivors of torture battle with the horrors of their past. Freedom from Torture is the only organisation in the UK that works to support and rehabilitate them. It stands with them, supports them through the healing process, helps to rebuild shattered lives and restores faith in humanity. No one else does the vital work that Freedom from Torture carries out and that’s why I’m happy to do all I can to support its work again this year.”
Freedom from Torture offers medical consultation, examination and forensic documentation of injuries, psychological treatment and support, as well as practical help to survivors of torture in the UK. It also works to protect the rights of survivors and contribute to torture prevention through policy, advocacy and survivor- led campaigning.
Freedom from Torture Chief Executive Keith Best said: “The biennial art auction is our biggest fundraising event and a great opportunity to generate much-needed funds to help us help survivors of torture. We help to rebuild the lives of some of the most vulnerable people living in the UK today – people bearing the physical and psychological scars of torture – and we rely heavily on the generosity of individual donors. We have had some incredible donations from some fantastic artists and I’m sure the auction will be an opportunity for people to take home a work by one of their favourite artists while supporting Freedom from Torture at the same time.”
The unmissable evening, which takes place every two years, will begin with drinks and canapés from 6pm and bidders and browsers will have the opportunity to view the works and a film about the work of Freedom from Torture before the auction gets underway at 7.30pm.
Freedom from Torture is a human rights organisation and one of the largest torture rehabilitation centres in the world. It offers medical consultation, examination and forensic documentation of injuries, psychological treatment and support, as well as practical help to survivors of torture and organised violence in the UK. It also works to protect the rights of survivors and contributes to torture prevention through policy, advocacy and survivor-led campaigning.
ARTISTS DRAWING A LINE UNDER TORTURE: FREEDOM FROM TORTURE: THE ART AUCTION, STUDIO SPACES, WAPPING, WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 13, 2013, 6-10.30PM