Help a Hungry Child: Grayson Perry donates rare artwork to The Independent charity auction

Readers have a rare chance to bid on a breathtaking wood print of a half-bull, half-bear creature

Naomi Ackerman
Tuesday 12 December 2017 12:13
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The rare artwork is inspired by the Turner Prize winner’s 2016 Channel 4 series about masculinity, All Man
The rare artwork is inspired by the Turner Prize winner’s 2016 Channel 4 series about masculinity, All Man

Celebrated artist Grayson Perry backed The Independent and London Evening Standard Christmas Appeal as he donated a limited edition work to our prize-filled auction.

Readers have a rare chance to bid on a breathtaking wood print of a half-bull, half-bear creature – inspired by the Turner Prize winner’s award-winning 2016 Channel 4 show All Man – to hang at home.

Perry, known for his ceramics and campaigning stance on equal access to culture, said he made the donation to “help out a bit”.

This paper is raising funds for the Felix Project so that the most deprived children do not go to bed hungry this Christmas. With readers’ help, market-style stalls will be set up in 120 schools across London over the next two years, giving disadvantaged children and their families a chance to take home a paper bag filled with healthy, nutritious food – items that would otherwise have ended up in landfill.

Perry said: “Artists can now print money, literally, can’t we? So why shouldn’t we help out a bit?

“It’s a bit shameful that a charity has to pick up issues like this, but of course you want to help out, and in the end for all the campaigning I do around culture, if someone doesn’t have enough to eat or a roof over their head, it’s a lot more important to get that sorted out.”

The colour etching up for sale is one of 68 limited edition prints of Animal Spirit. Signed by the artist, it is 63.5cm by 77.3cm.

“[The work I donated] is a nice big black-and-white print of a smiley animal and it’s by Grayson Perry, so it’s worth a load of money, so of course you would want it in your house,” the artist quipped. “It came out of my TV series about men, the one that I filmed with the City bankers. The idea was that in 2008 when the crash happened there was this phrase that kept coming out of the debate: ‘animal spirit’.

“I found it interesting because it seemed like they were parking the subjectivity and emotion on this imagined entity called an ‘animal spirit’ as if they were not part of it at all. That their sort of irrationality was somehow an imaginary fantasy beast. And so I made up this character that is half-bull, half-bear.”

The labelled intestines of the creature are references to ancient times when intestines were used to prophesy the future, while other symbolism in the work – including the “abandoned baby” in the foreground, derives from the Japanese candlestick graphs, still used today by Japanese traders after 500 years.

The artist suggested hanging the print over a fireplace and said his ideal bidder was, surprisingly, a banker.

“I think a banker has got to have it, haven’t they? In their foyer or in their offices as a kind of warning – don’t get too cocky if you think you know it all.”

In financial parlance, a “bull” is an investor who thinks a stock or the market is poised to rise, while a “bear” is more pessimistic. The auction opens today and readers have a week to bid.

To bid, visit: givergy.com/charity/the-felix-project

Givergy is an award-winning fundraising technology company that offers a range of cutting-edge platforms to help charities raise more at fundraising events and online. With offices in London, New York, San Francisco, Toronto, Calgary, Vancouver, Hong Kong and Sydney, Givergy’s ambition and purpose will always remain: to help charities raise as much money as possible for their incredible causes by encouraging giving through technology

For more information on Givergy, visit givergy.com. Follow Givergy on Twitter or Facebook to keep up to date on the latest auction lots and other news or sign up to the Givergy newsletter, via the website. Our auction is powered by Givergy

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