Home · Blog · Art : Just Around the Corner Art Auction: Update!


We are thrilled that our art auction with Sotheby’s, held on May 22, 2011 at the Kistefos Museum outside Oslo, Norway raised $750,000 (NOK 4.2 million/£ 467,000) to improve the lives of people in Africa with access to clean water! In February 2012, representatives from Voss Foundation and donors from the art auction visited Urra, site of the first project to be funded by Just Around the Corner. See photos of the project and learn more about the trip here!


The Just Around the Corner Art Auction shattered an outrageous number of records. It was the most successful charity art auction ever to be held in Norway, and marked Sotheby’s first in the country. Kistefos Museum witnessed unprecedented crowds with over 2,200 attendees. Among the international artists who achieved record prices were Tony Cragg (NOK 850,000), Marc Quinn (NOK 360,000), Darren Almond (NOK 150,000), Olav Christopher Jenssen (NOK 290,000), Kjell Erik Killi Olsen (NOK 160,000), Mikkel McAlinden (NOK 130,000), Bjarne Melgaard (NOK 170,000) and Candida Höfer (NOK 350,000).


Sotheby’s Vice Chairman, Lord Poltimore auctioned the 52 lots donated by artists, galleries, and collectors from around the world. Proceeds will go towards water projects in Kenya and supporting the charitable activities of the Voss Foundation and Milgis Trust.


The community of Urra, where the first Just Around the Corner Art Auction project was implemented, is located in the Samburu region of Northern Kenya, west of the Ndoto Mountains.  The well currently serves approximately 500 people, and the community additionally plays host to hundreds of nomads, especially during the dry season, when they travel up to 20 kilometers to reach this spot.  As Helen Douglas-Dufresne, founder of Milgis Trust, remarked:


“Orra [sic.]is the safest gateway to the north of the [Ndoto mountains], and there will be many travellers [sic.]enjoying the fresh drinking water here…”


Students benefit from clean, convenient, centrally accessed water at the Urra School, which has two classrooms and a kitchen.  And the wildlife that Milgis Trust works so hard to preserve also enjoy water–elephants come to wallow in mud near the water basin built for them.


“This triumph is a result of global collaboration between artists, collectors and galleries  lasting over a year, exceeding all of our expectations. By combining our efforts, we found that we could achieve what was believed to be unattainable. We learned that no challenge – not even the water crisis in Sub-Saharan Africa– is insurmountable,” said Knut Brundtland, Founder and President of Voss Foundation. Christen Sveaas, Founder, Board member, and sponsor of Kistefos Museum, congratulated the Voss Foundation on an outstanding accomplishment to provide much-needed aid to the people of Africa.



To see photos of the event, please visit our Facebook page.  You can also view photos of the first project completed with the funds raised.  For more information, please contact info@thevossfoundation.org.

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