Last night, the developers behind The Old Vinyl Factory and Clapham One held a thrilling event at auction house Bonhams in London, raising an incredible £86,900 for the charity KIDS. This was the final hurrah in a colourful fundraising campaign by Cathedral Group who challenged 20 top architects, designers, artists, model makers and poets to create working dolls’ houses for the charity auction.
The event was hosted by Bonhams in their newly revamped venue on New Bond Street, designed by Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands and opened only two weeks ago. Cathedral Group packed the room to the rafters in the auction house’s first charity event in its exceptional new space.
Throughout the evening, attendees were invited to peruse the 20 dolls’ houses on display and bid for their favourite using the hand-held devices at each station. Many of the artistic teams behind the inventive creations were also on hand to answer any questions about their designs.
At the climax of the event - and following a heartfelt address from Creative Director at Cathedral Group Martyn Evans - a live auction for 6 of the dolls’ houses was hosted by one of Bonhams' charismatic auctioneers. Generous hands flew up across the auction room, with the first house (and auctioneer's favourite) by Morag Myerscough and Luke Morgan selling for £4,600, swiftly followed by Lifschutz Davidson Sandilands' creation which sold for an incredible £11,000.
After a fierce battle, HLM Architects’ Sound [Play]ce was sold for £10,000 and Duggan Morris’ multi-storey dolls’ house for children with autism was taken home for £5,5000. Culminating the high-intensity auction were two completely opposing houses: Fat Architecture's collaboration with Grayson Perry inspired by Erno Goldfinger’s Balfron Tower raising £10,000 and Zaha Hadid’s wooden and Perspex interpretation of her 2007 Ideal House which was won for £14,000.
The silent auction continued for another 15 minutes to give those who missed out in the live bidding the opportunity to take home another original piece, before Martyn Evan took to the stage to announce the final total: an amazing £86,900. Every penny of this will be donated to KIDS, a UK charity that helps disabled children become more independent and develop social and interpersonal skills.