Art of compassion

International celebrities are set to hit Dubai next month for a charity art auction

By Adam Zacharias

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Published: Thu 16 Oct 2008, 8:48 PM

Last updated: Sun 5 Apr 2015, 3:43 PM

CELEBRITIES INCLUDING DAVID Beckham will lend their creative touch for a charity art auction to be held next month.

Sponsored by Khaleej Times, ‘Art with a Smile, India on Canvas’ will see personalities from all walks of life paired with noted artists to create a unique artwork. Each piece of art will then be auctioned off, with proceeds shared between Khushii and the Al Noor Centre for Children with Special Needs.

Khushii (Kinship for Humanitarian, Social and Holistic Intervention in India) was established in 2003. The charity raised $7.5million last year through art auctions in Delhi and Bombay - with the money going towards projects in fields including healthcare, education and rural development. It is looking at expanding into Dubai to support future charitable ventures.

The Al Noor Centre opened its doors in November 1981, helping eight children. Today it cares for 220 youngsters with special needs, teaching them life skills and helping to integrate them into society.

The auction will take place under the patronage of Princess Haya Bint Al Hussein, Wife of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE, Ruler of Dubai.

It will be held on Friday November 28 at the Madinat Jumeirah. Christie’s will conduct the event, and there will be a special performance by renowned pianist Richard Clayderman. A total of 60 lots will be auctioned.

As well as Beckham, other famous names involved in the project include Amitabh Bachchan, Jaya Bachchan, Ratan Tata, Ritu Kumar and Vijay Mallya.

An Audi A4 and a Nissan Murano will also be auctioned off to raise money. The Audi will have artwork on its body, painted on by respected artists Patricia Millns and Paresh Maity. Patricia is originally from London and has lived throughout the Middle East since the 1970s. Her artwork is inspired by the region, looking at Arabic themes with a western eye. Paresh is an award-winning artist whose work has won particular acclaim in Europe.

“‘Art with a Smile’ will be an effective catalyst in bridging the gap between various segments of society,” said Khalid Al Halyan, chairman of Al Noor. “It will bring them towards a common cause of global concern, reaffirming the power of the individual and the perseverance of the human spirit.”

Vandana Luthra, president of Khushii, added that it was everyone’s responsibility as human beings to strive for the good of our fellow man. “We must do what we can for the wellbeing of people of all ages, genders and races,” she said. “Adopting initiatives that fulfil our creative desires and give us an opportunity to give back to society is just a small step towards creating awareness and support for global causes.”

See or for more details on the works of either charity.

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