Following my Red Rum exhibition at the Osborne Studio Gallery in London’s Belgravia in April, and thanks to gallery owner Geoffrey Hughes, I was asked to donate four of the images by Peter Jenson for The Jockey Club sponsored British Sporting Art Trust charity auction which I readily agreed to.
After selection and being beautifully printed, mounted and framed by Point 101, the four photos from the exhibition were sold on Tuesday 5th June at the racing charity auction held at Christies in King Street, the world’s leading auction house.
Hung in the same room as my photos (but not in the charity sale) were also oil paintings by Alfred Munnings, George Romney and John Constable.
Humble is far too grand a word to explain my reaction on seeing this juxtaposition, my photos alongside work by some of the world’s greatest artists, an impossible situation to have ever expected. Everything at Christies is beautifully lit with theatre style lighting which makes every picture a star in the spotlight, the best lighting of any gallery or saleroom in London I know of.
After being treated to admirable Taittinger champagne and canapes for an hour, the excellent Christies auctioneer, Hugh Edmeades, skilfully got the price up of every lot before my four photos, Lot 12. Bidding started at £1,000 and within five minutes were sold for £3,000, a great result for the charity. The total for the whole evening was £43,000 from the very generous bidders.
But for me the best thing is that those Red Rum photos of mine will be hung in the Boardroom at Aintree Racecourse thanks to Rose Paterson, the chairman. I could not wish for them to be in a better place than Aintree where Red Rum went into horse racing history, became a legend and is buried at the finishing line.
I am totally astonished by all this; never in my wildest dreams could I have thought this would happen to me. All in all a most wonderful night!
Copyright images by Chizuko Kimura and Jeremy Hoare