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Classic FM

INTERVIEW WITH RHYDIAN ROBERTS

Classic FM caught up with Rhydian Roberts at The Art of Giving VIP Preview at the Saatchi Gallery on 7 October, where he performed a few songs before the auction.

We asked the Welsh singer, who shot to fame in X Factor in 2007, why he thought Wales produces so many great singers and whether he misses his homeland when he’s away.

Next month, Rhydian is embarking on a tour of UK arenas in Jeff Wayne’s musical The War of the Worlds, in which he plays Parson Nathaniel. He tells us about the role, for which he’s losing his trademark white hair.

Asked what it’s like performing in such large venues as the O2, and whether it requires different skills, Rhydian said “I’ve always been a larger than life character when I’m on stage and I think that helps.”

Velvet Onion

THE ART OF FIELDING

Today marks the start of the ‘Art of Giving’ Exhibition at the Saatchi Gallery in London, which runs for 2 days, until 9th October. This show features works from a diverse and wide ranging group of contemporary artists, including Gavin Turk, Terry O’Neil and the infamous Banksy. All work has been donated for a charity auction, so if you have some spare cash you can bid for the pieces in the show - all for a good cause!

The reason we’re covering this on TVO is because Noel Fielding’s ‘Jellyfox’ video installation is one of the exhibits. For anyone who’s visited his art show at Maison Bertaux, this is the darkly beautiful, crinkly animated piece that ususally inhabits the patisserie’s basement room. It features visual and musical input from Nigel Coan and Serge Pizzorno respectively.

At last night’s opening it was generating a lot of interest from the assembled guests; visitors we spoke to were very positive, describing it as “Amazing and scary – loved it!”, “Psychadelically Surreal”, and our favourite comment, “A cross between ‘Where the Wild Things Are’ and an Umbongo advert”. Noel’s family seemed pretty chuffed to see his artistic output exhibited in such a prestigious gallery space, with his Mum admitting to having a proud parent moment!

If you fancy having a proud fan moment you can see Noel’s installation today and tomorrow as part of the Art of Giving charity show (in Gallery 3).

Evening Standard

The notoriously secretive graffiti artist Banksy risked breaking cover at a public auction by making last-minute restorations to one of his pieces before it was sold by Moorfields Eye Hospital for £30,000.

Organisers of last night's charity auction said the artist was personally involved in removing the work, Gangsta Rat, from the wall of the hospital in City Road, where he had painted it in 2006.

They realised it had vanished just minutes before Lord Archer was due to conduct the auction — and found that a man believed to be Banksy had taken the piece away to tidy it up for sale.

Jessica Wood, publicist for the event at the Saatchi Gallery, said: “This guy took it down the staircase and broke it out of the frame. I said, What are you doing?' He just fired off expletives, though he apologised later. It was Banksy removing graffiti from the top of it.”

Banksy and his team were involved throughout the planning and had helped the Moorfield to cut the picture of a medallion-wearing rat clutching a microphone from the wall. They had also insisted that details of its sale were released only at the last minute.

The work had been hidden behind a hoarding for the last four years to protect it from damage or theft. The £30,000 will go towards research into new treatment for eye disease.

Another highlight of the auction was the appearance of four topless, body-painted models who stopped traffic in King's Road as they arrived to stand on plinths in the gallery as a “living art installation”.

Around 2,500 people attended the evening – including four bodypainted models as a living art installation by artist Boyarde Messenger.

Preparations for their appearance took place at a flat near the Saatchi Gallery and the women donned bin bags and carried umbrellas to protect themselves from the spitting rain as they walked the shortdistance to join the party.

When they stripped to reveal their full body-painted glory, traffic stopped on the Kings Road and people poured out of shops and bars to take a peak. Inside they paraded before standing on plinths.

The Guardian

BANKSY'S GANGSTA RAT WHICH HE DREW ON A WALL AT MOORFIELDS EYE HOSPITAL FOUR YEARS AGO IS TO BE SOLD AT A CHARITY AUCTION

Banksy's Gangsta Rat graffito that he drew on a wall at Moorfields Eye hospital in London. It will be sold at auction today to raise money for eye treatment research.

For four years it has been hiding behind a hoarding on a hospital wall, but tonight one of Banksy's most famous rat stencils will be revealed again when it goes on sale at a charity auction.

The graffito, Gangsta Rat, which shows a medallion-wearing rat clutching a microphone, appeared on the wall of the Moorfields Eye hospital in London's City Road in late 2006, but was covered up soon afterwards to protect it – and the hospital wall – from damage or theft.

Now, Moorfields has decided to auction off the work to raise funds for its research into new treatments for eye disease. It will go under the hammer tonight at The Art of Giving event at the Saatchi gallery.

"As far as I can gather, it simply appeared on the wall outside our main entrance one morning," said John Pelly, Moorfields's chief executive yesterday. "A member of staff subsequently offered us £5,000 for it, but we suspected it was probably worth a good deal more."

"We are incredibly grateful to Art of Giving for providing us with the opportunity to benefit financially from this unusual piece of street art and put the money raised towards crucial research into eye disease," he added.

Not all public bodies have recognised the value of having an original Banksy on their property. Last year, Hackney Council painted over one of his works showing the royal family waving from a balcony, following Westminster Council's decision to remove another work called One Nation Under CCTV [see footnote]. Westminster's deputy leader Robert Davis said keeping the mural would encourage other graffiti artists.

He said: "I take the view that this is graffiti, and if you condone this, then what is the difference between this and all the other graffiti you see scrawled across the city? If you condone this, then you condone graffiti all over London."

• This footnote was added on 13 October 2010. To clarify: Westminster Council issued a "removal notice", which does not specify how removal is achieved. In this instance the owners of the wall have covered the work, which is still intact and in place.

Sloane Square

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The Resident

“People go absolutely bonkers for my bottoms,” says Boyarde Messenger. She’s referring to her art, of course. Messenger is making a name for herself with her Pop Art Bottoms – repetitive, playful, sensuous images of female nudes that combine her hand painting and photographic skills.

And this month, Messenger, a Chelsea girl born and bred, will be showcasing her bottoms at the Saatchi Gallery, when it plays host to a brand new charity art exhibition called The Art of Giving. Inspired by her best friend Charlotte Dellal (they shared a dorm at Bedales) Messenger will be creating a live installation of female nudes all wearing Dellal’s beautifully extravagant shoes.

“It’s really exciting,” says Messenger, “I’ve been given this great, ginormous space by the gallery and I really want to stand out.” Messenger will be showing alongside established names from the art world such as Gavin Turk and Steve Goddard and a number of celebrities like Vic Reeves and Noel Fielding. But she’ll have the advantage of naked models clad only in Dellal’s shoes and a G string, each handpainted by Messenger in her unique style to mirror the shoes they are wearing. It will be, says Messenger, “a stunning fusion of art and fashion”. Behind the models on their plinth, Messenger will hang some of her famous Pop Art Bottoms.
Ebullient and passionate about her work, Messenger is a winning interviewee. She explains she’s always been interested in the female form but had been a commercials director. It was a chance fun photo of a friend’s bottom on holiday in the South of France that morphed into her Pop Art Bottoms. She remembers that she played around with the initial bottom image “and went a bit Warhol” and suddenly everyone wanted one. Messenger has done a range of photographic work in the last few years, and shown widely with the Cynthia Corbett Gallery, “but nothing sells as well as my bottoms,” she laughs “and now I just embrace it”.

Bottoms have now led her to Belize. A few years ago, Messenger visited the Caribbean island and realised that she felt happier there both emotionally and creatively than she did in London. What she describes as her “flip flops and rice n’ beans side” is now half of her life as she splits her time between Belize and the Big Smoke. And in Belize her bottoms have become a more serious project. “I found a whole new world of women who are slightly dominated by the Alpha males out there,” she says. Little by little and in a “very humble” way, Messenger is trying to change perceptions on the island, working with local women, painting them – often using her own painstaking handcrafted stencils and photographing them. She recalls how one local girl had absolutely “zero” confidence but by working with her “I brought out this little inner goddess”. Messenger says none of her work is rewarding as this, “slowly but surely I’m changing the way they look at women, that’s my personal gratification.”

Not that Messenger has opted for a hippie existence, she’s quite happy to return to London, rinse the sand out of her hair, pop on one of her own beloved pairs of vertiginous Dellal shoes and take the city by storm. It was a chance meeting in London with the founder of the Art of Giving, Tracey Bambrough, that led to her being asked to take part.

“I feel very privileged to be involved” says Messenger. The simple premise behind Art of Giving is to combine the sale of original artwork by up-and-coming artists with raising money for charities. A number of charities will be involved at Saatchi where all art will be for sale, with 50 per cent of proceeds available to the artist and a substantial percentage being donated to the charity.

On paper, one could assume that life has been handed to Messenger on a silver platter. The school, the friends, the opportunities but Messenger insists this is not the case. “Technically I am a Chelsea rah rah but I’m about as un-rah rah as you can get,” she insists. She went to Bedales on a scholarship, drives a battered old Golf and doesn’t assume life owes her anything. “I’m so proud of myself because I know I’ve done it all by myself.” And no one is going to argue with that.

Journal Live

SUNDERLAND UNI GLASS ARTISTS SHORTLISTED IN COMPETITION

A PAIR of artistic students have been shortlisted in a national sculpture competition.

Jessica Irena Smith and Erin Dickson, from Sunderland University, were picked out of thousands of entries to exhibit their glass sculptures at the renowned Saatchi Gallery in London. The pair, both former students on the university’s MA in glass, will be heading down to the capital next Thursday where the 30 finalists of the Art of Giving competition will display their work.

There were three categories in total – painting and drawing, photography and sculpture – each with 10 shortlisted artists.

A panel of top artists along with comedian Vic Reeves will judge the pieces at the invitation-only preview night before announcing a winner from each category and an overall winner.

Jessica, 27, said: “It’s quite inconceivable that two of us from the same course are two of the 10.”

Erin and Jessica didn’t actually know each other as they graduated a year apart but they got in touch as soon as they saw they had both been selected.

And the pair are hoping the opportunity to show at the prestigious Saatchi Gallery will help boost their blossoming careers as artists in a particularly competitive field.

“It was really stressful, I didn’t sleep for a week waiting for the final shortlist to be announced. Just to get to show at the Saatchi Gallery will hopefully bring more interest,” added Jessica.

Since graduating last summer, Jessica, of Consett, County Durham, now works as a full-time artist and has had work exhibited at Newcastle’s Biscuit Factory as well as permanent work on display at galleries in London and Edinburgh.

She’s now looking forward to heading down to London for the event, which also has three other categories, as she’s been told that there will be a string of celebrities there as well.

Jessica said: “There is a charity auction on the same night so there will be work by celebrities exhibiting as well. I think Derren Brown is one of them.”

Actress Jane Seymour and designers Terry de Havilland and Charlotte Dellal will also be attending the private event.

If Erin or Jessica are lucky enough to scoop the prize for best sculpture they will be taking home much-needed money and artists’ vouchers to assist them in their future projects.

There is also an overall prize judged across all categories of the Art of Giving competition with an even bigger sum of cash up for grabs.

But Erin, who completed her MA at Sunderland University this summer and has now begun her PhD, is just happy to see her work on display.

The 23-year-old, from South Shields, said: “It’s the ultimate place, I never expected that I would get through. It’s one of the top galleries in the world. I hope a lot of people get to see my work – maybe I will get a couple of commissions out of it.”

Both of the artists work with glass to create intricate designs and sculptures using hi-tech machinery at Sunderland’s National Glass Centre to form the delicate pieces of work.

Their work will be on display at the Saatchi Gallery in London from Thursday, October 7, which is an invite-only viewing, to October 9.

 

ArtsHub

ArtsHub | 21 July 2010

THE ART OF GIVING AT SAATCHI GALLERY THIS OCTOBER

THE ART OF GIVING: Stars from the art and entertainments world are teaming together for a brand new charity art exhibition

Stars from the art and entertainments world are teaming together for a brand new charity art exhibition, the Art of Giving, to be held at the Saatchi Gallery, London this October. Among the celebrities showing off their artistic skills is illusionist Derren Brown who is showing a series of three limited edition caricatures. Comedian Vic Reeves has paintings and installations on display. Vic studied at Goldsmith’s College of Art before embarking on his television career. Shoe designer, Terry de Havilland is exhibiting a site-specific installation, and actress Jane Seymour, a selection of her delicate Californian watercolours. Jane has been painting for over twenty years. These celebrity works will hang side by side with paintings, drawings and sculpture by famous contemporary artists such as Gavin Turk, Leonardo Drew, Steve Goddard, Penny Lamb, Zac Ove, Hassan Hajjaj and Alexa Meade. All works are up for auction to raise money for a series of charities: Crisis/Michael AZ Art Foundation, CHASE, Elsa Trust and GAWPT, Music Makers, Independent Age, Witch Children of Nigeria, House of Fairy Tales and One Drop Foundation. In addition, the Art of Giving will exhibit works by the finalists of an international art competition. Over the past six months, artists have been submitting details of their art in three categories: Painting and Drawing; Sculpture; Photography for a chance to win cash prizes and the opportunity to exhibit at the Saatchi Gallery alongside famous artists. The judges of the art competition are comedian Vic Reeves, portrait artist Christian Furr and photographer Terry O’Neill who are contributing works to the celebrity exhibition as well. The aim of the competition is to give lesser-known artists a step up in their career.

Ice & Fire e-Mag

QUEEN’S ELM GALLERY GOES WILD AGAIN . . . FOR CHRISTIAN THE LION

ART OF GIVING AT QUEEN ELM'S GALLERY, CHELSEA SW3

Celebrity supporters will be joining John Rendall and the Art of Giving for the launch of the new Christian the Lion book. John will be sharing his wonderful experiences with Christian combined with an art gallery event, being supported by a wealth of amazing artists generously donating a percentage of sales of their work to George Adamson Wildlife Preservation Trust and the Born Free Foundation.

Art of Giving was created by Ben and Tracey Bambrough who wanted to channel their passion for art and a desire to really make a difference, into a worthwhile and sustainable project. The company will be launched at the V&A in June 2010. However, a chance meeting with Simon Tarrant of the wonderful Queen’s Elm gallery, a conversation with Born Free and consequent meeting with John Rendall, created a pre-launch opportunity which was too good to miss . . . to bring ‘Christian the Lion’ back to London and celebrate his life - just a stone’s throw away from where he lived in the Kings Road.

The book shares the heart-warming and true story of Christian. The lion cub bought from Harrods by John Rendall and Anthony (Ace) Bourke, raised in their Chelsea flat and finally returned to live wild and free on the African plains with the help of Virginia McKenna, Bill Travers and George Adamson. Christian’s story is told in scrapbook style, using original photographs* of him as a cub. These images are both funny, moving and heart warming. The simple and accessible text, told in Christian’s voice, deals with themes familiar to little ones - love friendship, play and exploration.

The story and film of Christian the Lion has been shown around the world and has captured everyone’s hearts. John and Ace’s meeting with him in the wild was the most watched clip in 2008 with over 44 million hits on You Tubehttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oiGKWoJi5qM

Christian, in this celebration of his life, is being an ambassador for those wonderful animals now so critically reduced in numbers due to human population growth, habitat loss, trophy hunting and depletion. GAWPT and the Born Free Foundation are doing everything in their power to raise awareness, to educate the world on how to save the lives of wild animals, stop suffering rescue individuals and protect rare species, but the cost of doing this relies heavily on support and donations to enable this to be achieved.

For more information on this event, please contact info@artofgiving.co.uk

Christian the Lion books can be purchased at the event or via the GAWPT website http://www.georgeadamson.org/ and the Christian the Lion DVD can be purchased via the Born Free Foundation website http://www.bornfree.org.uk/

ANIMAL CONSERVATION FACTS

40 years ago, there were 200K lions in the world today there are only 30K – in Kenya 40 years ago, there were 30K lions, there are now only 2K. At this rate, lions could be extinct in just years.

 

 
 

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Renaissance as Augury-4

 

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Lance Percival

 

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Hugh Bonneville & Charlie Cox

 

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