Birmingham’s Ikon gallery has celebrated the finale its 50th anniversary year by holding a fundraising auction at Sotheby’s in London.

Just under £800,000 was raised by the Artists for Ikon sale which took place on on 2 July, laying the foundations for Ikon’s 50th Anniversary Endowment Fund. The money will go towards developing the gallery’s artistic programme and the commissioning of new art work.

A number of high profile artists donated work, all of whom have previously exhibited at the gallery. Highlights included Julian Opie’s Red socks and Chanel bag which sold for £93,750. Also on sale was a neon work from artist Martin Creed, FRIENDS, which fetched £36,250. Cornelia Parker’s work Alter Ego (Mutiny) – a reference to her 1988 Ikon installation, Thirty Pieces of Silver – achieved £32,500.

However, the biggest sales belonged to Birmingham-born artist Hurvin Anderson and Chinese artist Ding Yi. Their works Cypress Hill and Appearance of Crosses 2008-38 sold for £173,000 and £155,000 respectively.

Director Jonathan Watkins commented: “The buyers have not only invested in contemporary art – vital for the well-being of cultural life in this country – but also made invaluable donations to a charitable cause. The strength of the sales, from artists who have all previously exhibited at Ikon, bears testament to the continuing quality and relevance of our artistic programme since it started fifty years ago.”

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