The Italian bank UniCredit, which has an art collection of 60,000 works, is planning to sell 312 works in an effort to raise €50m to fund a Social Impact Banking initiative. The first tranche of works is coming to market during the Frieze week sales in London in two weeks. Christie’s will be selling 33 works with a combined low estimate of £14m. The most valuable works—accounting for nearly £12m in low estimate— are two Gerhard Richter paintings and an Yves Klein sponge.
Here’s Christie’s release on the upcoming sale:
UniCredit has appointed Christie’s to manage the sale of artworks from Austria, Germany and Italy. The proceeds will be primarily used to support the further roll-out of the group’s Social Impact Banking (SIB) initiatives. The remaining balance will be dedicated to other relevant projects, including the support of young artists.
The artworks will be offered at various Christie’s international salerooms across a range of marquee week sales in 2019 and 2020, with the first pieces being auctioned in London on 4 and 5 October as part of the Post-War & Contemporary Art Evening and Day Auctions alongside Thinking Italian, taking place during Frieze Week. The selection will include works by Gerhard Richter, Yves Klein, Ernst Wilhelm Nay, Enrico Castellani, Sam Francis, Andreas Gursky and Nam June Paik among others.
Further details of these lots can be found here. Information regarding works being offered in future auctions will be announced in due course.
Social Impact Banking is part of UniCredit’s commitment to building a fairer and more inclusive society. It aims to identify, finance and promote people and companies that can have a positive social impact. As well as continuing to provide credit to projects and organisations not usually served by the traditional banking sector, UniCredit employees educate micro-entrepreneurs, social enterprises and vulnerable or disadvantaged groups, building valuable networks within our communities. SIB also focuses on
monitoring and measuring outcomes, essential for sustainable growth. It is currently being rolled out in 10 additional UniCredit markets, including: Germany, Austria, Serbia, Croatia, Hungary, Bulgaria, Romania, Turkey, the Czech Republic and Slovakia, and Bosnia and Herzegovina.