Page last updated at 14:36 GMT, Monday, 3 August 2009 15:36 UK

Attenborough-owned art to be sold

Old Houses by Lowry
Old Houses, by Lowry, is estimated to fetch between 300,000 and 500,000

Fifty works of British art owned by Lord and Lady Attenborough - including a piece by LS Lowry - are to be auctioned on 11 November.

Sotheby's London says the sale, which also includes works by Barbara Hepworth, Henry Moore and Edward Burra, is expected to fetch more than £2m.

Old Houses by Lowry is estimated to fetch between £300,000 and £500,000.

The film director, 85, said the time was right "to pass on these ravishing images for others to treasure".

Lord Attenborough
We have loved and cherished these wonderful pieces throughout the course of our lives but, in all truth, art belongs to no-one
Lord Attenborough

Lord Attenborough, whose 1982 film Gandhi won eight Academy Awards, added: "Sixty years ago, my wife Sheila and I bought the house we live in to this day.

"We could not afford carpets or curtains but, more importantly for us, we had a few pictures for our walls."

Their passion had led the couple "to the position of possessing more paintings than those walls can contain", he added.

"We have loved and cherished these wonderful pieces throughout the course of our lives but, in all truth, art belongs to no-one.

"Some of us are simply its temporary, fortunate and delighted custodians."

Included in the sale will be a rare collection of prints depicting World War I by Christopher Nevinson.

The collection reveals both a personal and public journey through much of the best British art of the 20th century
Henry Wyndham
Sotheby's

The work of artists including Ivon Hitchens, Ben Nicholson, Graham Sutherland and Christopher Wood will also be in the sale, entitled A Life in Pictures: The Collection of Lord and Lady Attenborough.

Sotheby's said the artists featured in the collection each interpreted the experiences of their day, "just as Lord Attenborough did through his work as a renowned actor, director and producer".

Sotheby's Europe chairman Henry Wyndham said the sale would "generate great excitement among collectors and connoisseurs alike".

"The collection reveals both a personal and public journey through much of the best British art of the 20th Century," he said.



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