SINGAPORE – A treasure trove of 45 sculptures by the late Brother Joseph McNally will be sold to raise funds for HopeHouse, a halfway house run by La Salle Brothers of Singapore.
This is the first time that such a large collection of works by the founder of the Lasalle College of the Arts has been put on sale.
All proceeds will be used to finance a five-story building located on the grounds of St Patrick’s School. Brother Nicholas Seet, 62, says the construction budget has dropped from $ 5 million to $ 9.5 million due to delays related to the pandemic.
This collection represents Brother McNally’s last artistic legacy – the La Salle Brothers have no more works.
Brother Seet thinks the art educator would have approved the reason for the sale. “Knowing Brother Joseph and his concern for the marginalized, he would not disagree with the sale. It is in line with our mission.
Ms Diana Lim, 62, an art collector who helps the Brothers organize the auction, says the collection is in very good condition. “They were stored in two rooms with no windows, just a door.”
Most of the exhibits have remained intact since Elder McNally died in 2002 from a heart attack in Ireland. Brother Seet admits that the works remained in reserve because the Brothers did not know what to do with them. “We have no aesthetic knowledge.”
The sale, organized by 33 Auction, is scheduled for late September or early October, depending on the date of completion of the renovation work on the new auctioneer space at Tanjong Pagar Distripark.
33 Auction handled the sale of two McNally’s works in 2018, the last time his works hit the market. Company director David Fu, 38, said, “One of the works valued at $ 20,000 sold for $ 30,000.”
Organizers hope to raise at least $ 600,000. Brother Seet says he was very surprised by the assessment, but Ms Lim thinks that number is quite conservative and hopes she can increase more for the house, which caters to boys aged 14 and over. She adds: “There are small works that collectors can display in their homes.
Prices start from $ 4,800 for small works, numbering 29. The pieces cover all of Brother McNally’s practice from the 1970s to the 2000s, and showcase his versatility with mediums, including woodworking. bogs, metal and multimedia works incorporating glass and epoxy.
Mr. Fu says, “We will definitely approach institutions, but I wouldn’t be surprised if the larger works went to private collectors. A lot of people are very excited about this coming to the market.
Details of the auction will be available at 33 Auction site soon.