Art collector Christian helps charities with lockdown portfolio by 16 UK artists

PUBLISHED: 17:39 30 October 2020 | UPDATED: 09:42 02 November 2020

The Help Portfolio features art by Michael Craig-Martin and Margaret Calvert.

The Help Portfolio features art by Michael Craig-Martin and Margaret Calvert.

The Help Portfolio

An art consultant from Harpenden is launching a charity box set of artworks in conjunction with internationally renowned artists to raise awareness of charities hit by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Help Portfolio features art by Michael Craig-Martin, Margaret Calvert and Jake and Dinos ChapmanThe Help Portfolio features art by Michael Craig-Martin, Margaret Calvert and Jake and Dinos Chapman

Christian Mathews has helped pull together The Help Portfolio, 2020.

Available from Thursday, November 5, 16 UK artists have each made a new signed, limited edition print which they have generously donated to the set.

All profits from the sale of this boxed collection of prints will be donated to 16 charities, each one selected by the artists involved.

The idea of 16 artists and 16 charities was conceived and developed during the COVID-19 lockdown by artist Sue Arrowsmith, collector Christian Mathews, director of Jealous Gallery and Print Studio Dario Illari, and director of Cristea Roberts Gallery, David Cleaton-Roberts.

Harpenden's Christian Mathews has helped pull together The Help Portfolio, 2020 which features work by 16 UK artistsHarpenden's Christian Mathews has helped pull together The Help Portfolio, 2020 which features work by 16 UK artists

Christian, who went to school in St Albans, said: “I wanted to do something to help charities that were suffering this year due to lack of funding as a result of COVID.

“During lockdown I had the idea to approach a small group of leading and influential artists to see whether they could produce an artwork that would be presented and sold as a limited edition box set.

“The idea soon became a reality after Sir Michael Craig-Martin, Ian Davenport, and Jake and Dinos Chapman all agreed to produce a new work and come on board.

“The result is The Help Portfolio – a stunning portfolio of 16 leading UK artists.”

Michael Craig-Martin's Gerberas features in The Help Portfolio, 2020Michael Craig-Martin's Gerberas features in The Help Portfolio, 2020

Works can be purchased online from 11am on Thursday, November 5 from JealousGallery.com.

Christian has also teamed up with a local framer Marks & Tilt in London Road, St Albans, who will have the portfolio box on display and can provide bespoke framing advice.

The charities selected each reflect a cause or organisation that the artists’ feel passionate about.

These include larger national bodies, as well as local organisations whose vital work in communities is often overlooked and underfunded.

Jake and Dinos Chapman's Colour Out of Space features in The Help Portfolio, 2020Jake and Dinos Chapman's Colour Out of Space features in The Help Portfolio, 2020

The collection of prints is presented in a portfolio box, featuring a cover designed by the iconic British graphic designer Margaret Calvert.

Best known for designing the UK’s road signing system, Calvert designed the Help logo, which also appears as a print in the portfolio.

Christian added: “All profits from the sale of this boxed collection of prints we be split amongst the 16 charities selected by the 16 contributing artists.

“We have a really broad range of charities being supported across the UK ranging from food banks, women refuges, cancer charities and mental health research.

Margaret Calvert's Help features in The Help Portfolio, 2020Margaret Calvert's Help features in The Help Portfolio, 2020

“I was especially thrilled to get the iconic graphic designer Margaret Calvert, best known for designing the UK’s road signing system, to design the Help logo which also appears as a print in the portfolio.”

Margaret currently has a retrospective show at the London Design Museum.

The works in the portfolio cover a wide range of mediums, themes and imagery, distinctive to each artist.

Michael Craig-Martin has created a screenprint depicting gerbera flowers in his characteristic bold, iconic style.

Ian Davenport's Uplift features in The Help Portfolio, 2020Ian Davenport's Uplift features in The Help Portfolio, 2020

Yinka Shonibare CBE incorporates gold leaf into his print to illustrate a symbolic tulip that sits under the words ‘Thank you’.

Sue Arrowsmith’s copper leafed print resonates with green ink that changes in the light.

Paul Winstanley offers us a lily, a symbol of hope in these strange times.

Nicky Hirst’s print is taken from her Elemental Works, an ongoing series of found objects and paired pages from books and magazines.

Harpenden's Christian Mathews has helped pull together The Help Portfolio, 2020Harpenden's Christian Mathews has helped pull together The Help Portfolio, 2020

Mathew Weir’s delicate still life entitled The Watching Hour is brought to life with snippets of glow-in-the-dark ink.

Paul Morrison’s Night Pond is a debossed version of a signature black and white image, and Elizabeth McGill captures an evocative landscape.

Annie Morris, who often draws on the history of art, presents Flower Woman.

A portrait of the Dali Lama realised in glow-in-the-dark inks by Chris Levine is entitled Compassion.

Yinka Shonibare CBE, Thank You, 2020, features in The Help PortfolioYinka Shonibare CBE, Thank You, 2020, features in The Help Portfolio

Jake and Dinos Chapman’s smiley face is illustrated in glitter in three different colours.

Idris Khan has obscured the notations on a sheet of music with densely applied areas of blue to make a work entitled Four Bar Rhythm, and Paul McDevitt presents an interpretation of a brick wall.

Abstract compositions exploring line and colour are realised in signature works by Ian Davenport, and No consequence by Remi Rough is printed directly onto plywood.

Charities benefitting include Shelter, Diabetes UK, Trussell Trust, Greenpeace, Pancreatic Cancer UK, and Teenage Cancer Trust.

Sue Arrowsmith, The Stars Can Only Get Brighter, 2020 features in The Help PortfolioSue Arrowsmith, The Stars Can Only Get Brighter, 2020 features in The Help Portfolio

Idris Khan, Four Bar Rhythm, 2020 features in The Help PortfolioIdris Khan, Four Bar Rhythm, 2020 features in The Help Portfolio


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