Help the Hungry: Ai Weiwei among top artists donating work to campaign auction

Sotheby’s sale raising funds for food surplus charity The Felix Project will also feature work by Tracey Emin, Bridget Riley and Anish Kapoor

Auction: Ai Weiwei’s Small Plate with Flowers, 2014, is among lots including works by Bridget Riley and Yinka Shonibare
Auction: Ai Weiwei’s Small Plate with Flowers, 2014, is among lots including works by Bridget Riley and Yinka Shonibare

Artworks by Ai Weiwei, Tracey Emin and Anish Kapoor are among those to be featured in a Sotheby’s contemporary art auction next week to support The Independent’s Help The Hungry campaign.

The sale, part of Sotheby’s Contemporary Art Day Auction that runs from 20 to 30 July, includes leading contemporary artists Bridget Riley, Mark Wallinger and Bob and Roberta Smith.

All money raised from the auction will go to The Independent’s appeal partner, The Felix Project, London’s largest food surplus distribution charity. Our campaign has so far raised £7.5m towards our £10m goal which includes a pledge to open London’s largest community kitchen to tackle food poverty.

Highlights from the Sotheby’s Help the Hungry auction include a drawing from Tracey Emin, a series of three etchings by Anish Kapoor, Mark Wallinger’s “Ghost”, and Bob & Roberta Smith’s “We Have Only Got Each Other” placard.

British-Nigerian artist Yinka Shonibare also joins the catalogue with his “Unstructured Icons - Aristocrat I” alongside a pair of polished steel reliefs by Michael Craig-Martin and a floral plate by Chinese artist Ai Weiwei.

Sotheby’s senior director Oliver Barker said: “We are grateful to the artists who have generously contributed their works and we’re looking forward to channelling part of the excitement of our major sales in London this month into a cause which will provide food and comfort to the capital’s most vulnerable.”

Evgeny Lebedev, proprietor of The Independent, said: “We are delighted to be raising money with Sotheby’s and some of the world’s leading contemporary artists to help build London’s biggest community kitchen that will continue to feed those in need for years to come.”

The Felix Project distributes nutritious food that would otherwise go to waste to 350 frontline charities, schools and holiday programmes in London.

Founder Justin Byam Shaw said: “Although our food is surplus and donated to us and we have over 1,500 volunteers, our costs are still spiralling.

“The coming unemployment crisis means we are in this for the long term. This new community kitchen will provide a high-quality meal for homeless Londoners, cooked by great chefs using surplus food.”

Ai Weiwei (AFP/Getty Images)

Turner Prize-winning artist Mark Wallinger said: “I am delighted to contribute to help raise funds for The Felix Project, a fantastic charity that does such vital work in providing food for vulnerable people throughout London, work that is ever more necessary in our current crisis.”

The Independent is encouraging readers to help groups that are trying to feed the hungry during the crisis – find out how you can help here. Follow this link to donate to our campaign in London, in partnership with the Evening Standard.

Sotheby’s Help The Hungry Auction will go live on 20 July and will run until 30 July.

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