Both a showcase for Christie's upcoming 20th/21st Century art sales and a glittering celebration of London's art scene, ELLE's Editor-in-Chief Kenya Hunt joined Christie's to host a champagne reception with a star-studded guest list.
Frieze London 2022 commences today, October 12, bringing some of the finest contemporary art to Britain's capital and attracting visitors in their droves, from those looking to place their bids, through to others who simply want to marvel at the colours and creations of the world's most exciting living artists.
With over 160 leading contemporary galleries taking part, the collections available to view this week are extensive, but undoubtedly one of the most interesting and arresting is being presented as part of Christie's 20th/21st Century art sales this week.
A Place with No Name: Works from the Sina Jina Collection comprises around 70 pieces from patron of the arts Robert Devereux, whose 1996 journey from Mozambique to Kenya inspired him to collect contemporary works from Africa and the diaspora. The pieces on show, which will be auctioned on October 13, include work by El Anatsui, Ibrahim El-Salahi, Nicholas Hlobo, William Kentridge, Marcia Kure, Elias Sime, and Lynette Yiadom-Boakye.
To celebrate what is anticipated to be the largest single owner sale of contemporary art from Africa and the diaspora - as the market for works by the artists presented continues to expand - ELLE joined Christie's to host a champagne reception and private view of the works this Tuesday evening, October 11, coinciding with the start of Frieze Week 2022.
ELLE's Editor-in-Chief Kenya Hunt welcomed friends and guests to the showcase at Christie's King Street establishment, among them including Black Panther actor and November ELLE cover star Letitia Wright, former ELLE cover star and Olympian Ramla Ali, two-time Olivier award-winner Sheila Atim, Bridgerton star Golda Rosheuvel and more.
Maximising on the occasion to celebrate the creativity of the diaspora, notable guests such as Golda Rosheuvel and musician Yazmin Lacey were invited to dress in designs by ethical and sustainable Nigerian fashion brand Torlowei and arrived in a glittering array of bold colours, lace motifs and lurex fabrics. Fun fact: Torlowei's 'Esther Dress' was the first piece of couture ever to join the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of African Art's permanent collection.
Other than the actors in attendance, the party also attracted an impressive array of authors, speakers, activists and designers, including Burberry's newly appointed Chief Creative Officer Daniel Lee, Booker prize-winner Bernardine Evaristo, authors Emma Dabiri and Dolly Alderton, fashion critic Susie Lau, ballet dancer Francesca Hayward and broadcaster Afua Hirsch.
Enjoying the endless stream of Perrier-Jouët, guests joined Kenya Hunt to preview A Place with No Name: Works from the Sina Jina Collection, which occupies a Christie's wing on ground level, while upstairs there was also the opportunity to clap eyes on major works like David Hockney's 'Early Morning, Sainte-Maxime' and Tracey Emin's 'Like A Cloud of Blood.'
Live music by Yazmin Lacey was followed by a DJ set from Esa Williams, to the backdrop of Andrea Bonaceto's NFT work 'Ab Infinite 1,' displayed on The Wall, thanks to innovation partner Samsung UK.
After Thursday's auction, part of the proceeds from the sale will be used to support arts and environmental charities. In Robert Devereux's words, 'Proceeds from this auction will benefit a number of charities that are close to my heart, including The African Arts Trust that I founded. For as long as I can remember, Gasworks has been at the forefront of presenting artists from under represented parts of the world with a healthy focus on Africa. It was here that I first encountered the work of Lynette Yiadom-Boakye. In its new incarnation in the London borough of Southwark, The Africa Centre is the best possible platform for showcasing the breadth and depth of artists’ creativity in Africa and the diaspora. Bët Bi will be one of the first contemporary museums to be built in Africa designed by an African architect, led by the inspirational founder of the Albers Foundation, Nick Fox Weber. I have a home in Lamu and therefore the protection of the island’s bio- diversity is a private passion, which The Lamu Environment Fund supports, particularly in the preservation of marine life.'