The 50 Windows of Creativity art trail, which has inspired and entertained thousands of city-centre dwellers during lockdown and beyond, concludes with a wonderfully festive finale on Thursday 17th December, with an online auction live streamed from the glorious Kimpton Clocktower Hotel.
The trail, which transformed Manchester city centre into an innovative art gallery, celebrating the city’s rich creative culture, has been extended until Sunday 13th December. Christmas shoppers and other visitors to the city in the festive period can now ‘window shop’ the trail, discovering their favourite makers and creators, ahead of the auction, at which lucky bidders could win beautifully poignant and memorable art, to gift, self-gift or even donate.
At the auction, hosted by auctioneer and TV personality, Charles Hanson, 72 individually designed artworks, all created by Greater Manchester artists, will be under the Christmas spotlight with proceeds going to the talented artists, designers and makers involved, and ourselves at We Love MCR Charity. Charles Hanson will be joined by auctioneer Caroline Hawley from TV’s Flog It! And Bargain Hunt.
From spectacular Mancunian mosaics from Mark Kennedy and Mary Goodwin and fine art from RP Roberts and Dreph, to stunning photography from award winning Benji Reid, delicate craft from Kaper, murals, sculptures and more, there is a piece of art for most people and most pockets with lots estimated to go from just £30 up to £10,000.
Viewers will also be able to bid for an original one-off commission from some of the North West’s most famous artists including the opportunity to have a unique version of the 50 Windows artwork by iconic designer Trevor Johnson and spoken word poet Tony Walsh, illustrator Caroline Dowsett and a bespoke botanical commission from Charlotte Smithson, who will work with the winning bidder to create a custom piece to style a space or create a site specific sculpture or installation.
With the online auction landing just one week before Christmas, organisers hope that bidders will be inspired to buy something extra special this year to support the city’s creative community which has been hit so hard by the pandemic, and of course the We Love MCR Charity which supports Manchester’s disadvantaged communities and individuals.
Bidders can view the auction catalogue and register to bid in the online auction via beeinthecitymcr.co.uk/50windows
“I’ve been privileged to see many incredible objects ‘under the hammer’ and the 50 Windows of Creativity artworks – from fine art and photography to ceramics, crafts, mosaics and murals – will be no exception.”
He continues: “This is a fantastic opportunity to own an original piece of art and show support for Manchester’s artists, designers and makers while also helping to raise funds to support the important work of the Lord Mayor of Manchester’s We Love MCR Charity.”
Ben Reed, Head of Creative Development, Wild in Art said:
“We are delighted that 50 Windows of Creativity has enabled us to shine a light on Manchester’s art and creative community. We would like to extend sincere thanks to everyone involved and particularly the artists and makers who have worked so hard to create the displays and the auction pieces.”
The Lord Mayor of Manchester Councillor Tommy Judge, Chair of Trustees of We Love MCR Charity said:
“We are delighted to be chosen as the benefiting charity for the 50 Windows of Creativity auction. We Love MCR Charity supports disadvantaged communities and individuals to be the best they can be and the funds we receive from our partnership with 50 Windows of Creativity will go directly to improving lives here in Manchester.”
Sharon Cameron, Regional Director Of Sales at Kimpton Clocktower Hotel, said:
“We are extremely proud to have supported and played a part in this wonderful event and looking forward to the auction being showcased in our beautiful recently refurbished Ballroom, which is the largest single event space within a hotel in the northwest of England.”
The Auction Lots
Mancunian masterpieces up for auction include an exclusive character piece from illustrator and Manchester mural painter Hammo, a single edition signed print from Guy McKinley, a Manchester Doodle BookBench by illustrator Dave Draws, depicting some of Manchester’s favourite landmarks and a trio of intricate mosaics by Mary Goodwin which showcase the faces of famous Greater Mancunians, L.S. Lowry, Shelagh Delaney and Anthony Burgess.
There will also be 3D sculptural art available from multidisciplinary creative artist, Lazerian who has created the ‘Black Rose Shark’ with 6,000 individual silk roses and LeiMai LeMaow’s ‘The Belly of the Beast’, a 5ft fiberglass gorilla gilded with 24ct gold, which pays tribute to rave culture and sits inside the real king of the jungle.
Other designs inspired by Manchester’s musical heritage, include visual artist and illustrator Amy Coney’s canvas named ‘We Will Dance Together Again’, which is a tribute to the importance of music, hospitality and the arts and ‘Art and Soul of the City’, a piece of art from professional artist, illustrator and designer, Justin Eagleton, which captures the energy and colour of Manchester with its heartbeat flowing through the music, art and culture.
Artworks for Manchester football fans hailing from the blue and red side of the city will also be up for grabs including a framed ceramic mosaic of Manchester City Football Club’s 2021 home shirt, created by renowned mosaicist, Mark Kennedy, and Sarah Connell’s stunning original mixed media paintings of Etihad Stadium and Old Trafford, which displays the scene from the end of Sir Matt Busby Way.
Other highlights include a framed photographic print by award-winning photographer and the winner of the Wellcome Trust Mental Health Category 2020, Benji Reid, an oil painting from visual artist Dreph, plus two lots from contemporary British artist Thomas Wolski, including ‘Peace Out 2020’ #upyours’, a luxurious piece of fine art and an extension of the ‘Wonderful World of Wolski’ installation at Harvey Nichols, and The ‘Harvey Nichols Icon Bag (2020)’, an original freehand illustrated shopping bag from one of the most renowned department stores in the world.
For lovers of nature and the great outdoors, British landscape artist, RP Roberts, who creates incredibly detailed and colourful depictions of mountainscapes, will also be auctioning off paintings of Aiguille du Midi above Chamonix and a depiction of one of North Wales’s most iconic mountains, Tryfan
In addition there will be a delicate peacock paper sculpture from designer and paper artist, Kaper, a ceramic artwork from May Wild Studio inspired by Manchester and its city pigeons, an original painting by Jodie Silverman which tells the story of the peppered moths which began to change their colour as a consequence of air pollution and a stunning jumping fox spray paint artwork from artist, illustrator and author Matt Sewell.
To view all of the 72 lots available and to register to bid, please visit: beeinthecitymcr.co.uk/50windows
50 Windows of Creativity is created by Wild in Art in partnership with Manchester City Council.
The project is supported by Event Partners Auto Trader and Dandara Living with other businesses including Hobs Repro, Ocean Outdoor, Jamieson Contracting, TfGM and Kimpton Clocktower Hotel also stepping forward to support the project.