The art auction has been years in the making, driven by Bangladeshi born, artist and sculptor, Rana Begum (pictured left), alongside friend and art collector, Ghada al-Bahar. Rana and Ghada have worked together to facilitate this wonderful collection of donated artwork, and a number of potential buyers have been invited to a dinner and tour of Rana's studio a week before the auction itself. Rana has donated two works of art herself and all ten pieces will be sold at Christies auction house. All the money raised will be spent on improving cleft care in Bangladesh. 

From the Christies catalogue: 

Works by exciting names, including Iftikhar Dadi & Elizabeth Dadi, Rasheed Araeen, Haroon Mirza, Prabha Meppayil, Bharti Kher, Ayesha Sultana, Rana Begum, Matthew Krishanu and Tayeba Lipi, will be sold to raise funds for CLEFT centre in Bangladesh and funding post-surgical care.

With ties to regions surrounding Bangladesh, the works offered span a wealth of mediums and techniques—from traditional paintings rendered on canvas, to larger sculptures and installations and intricate, smaller-scale metalwork. Boys on a Rock (Lot 327) is a vibrant autobiographical painting of childhood memory by British-born, Bangladeshi-raised artist Matthew Krishanu. The sale represents the artist’s auction debut, following successful exhibitions at the Hayward Gallery, London (2021) and Compton Verney, Warwickshire (2019, alongside Chantal Joffe). Prabhavathi Meppayil, Iftikhar & Elizabeth Dadi and Rasheed Araeen will also mark their auction debuts in the present sale. Bharti Kher—one of India's most pre-eminent contemporary artists—currently has a work installed in New York’s Central Park, while Haroon Mirza was previously awarded the Silver Lion Award for Most Promising Artist of the central exhibition, Illuminations, at the 54th Venice Biennale (2011).

The selection also includes works by two Bangladeshi artists: Ayesha Sultana and Tayeba Begum Lipi, whose work The Magical Beauty Box (Lot 336) captures her trademark use of steel razor blades. Metal recurs throughout the group as a medium: the second of Rana Begum’s sculptures, NO. 1183 (Mesh) (Lot 331), imbues the usually weighty and solid material with an ethereal, cloud-like presence, presenting bubbles of brightly-coloured mesh in sculptural form. This practice forms a large part of Begum’s exciting career to date: the present lot is a smaller scale version of mesh installations that have recently filled the Warwick Arts Centre and are currently on view outside the Moody Centre for the Arts, Houston.

To read more about the auction and to view the Lots on sale, please click here.

UPDATE 10/10/22

The artwork was displayed in Rana's studio last Thursday evening and potential art buyers were invited to the preview. A tour of the studio was given, dinner was served and talks given by Brian Sommerlad and Ghada Al-Bahar. Artist Matthew Krishanu (Boys on a Rock) was also able to attend this very special evening.


Pictured above: The 10 pieces of work donated to CLEFT hang in Rana Begum's studio before they are moved to Christies auction house.


Above left: The first of Rana Begum's donated pieces. Above right: (pictured from left to right) Matthew Krishanu, Ghada Al-Bahar, Brian Sommerlad, Rana Begum and Richard Allan.


Above left: Rana Begum & Ghada Al-Bahar. Above right: the beautifully dressed dinner table in Rana's studio.