A painting at a Horsham art gallery is set to go under the hammer this weekend to help raise money for this year’s Poppy Appeal.
‘A War Horse’ is to be auctioned off to members of the public at the new Poppy Shop in Swan Walk Shopping Centre, next to Sports Direct, sports clothing shop, at 11am on Saturday November 8 to raise funds for the Royal British Legion.
The painting is currently on display at Art Ache gallery, above Rachel’s Kitchen in the Carfax.
Artist Pete Oldreive donated the artwork to the charity after he decided the First World War theme of the piece tied in well with this years centenary commemorations.
He said: “I love it, it is something in me. I just love doing it.
“I thought I would do something different. I just paint as I go along and I thought I would make this one World War One themed.
“It took me about week to create it. I hope it makes a lot of money.”
The painting depicts a general and his horse on the battlefields in Europe and has connotations to the famous stage play War Horse, which is reflected in the artwork’s name.
Pete said he hopes it will reach at least £500 at auction.
“If I was to sell it I would want £500,” he said. “But it might sell for less, it might fetch more you just don’t know.”
Sally Bushnell, owner of Art Ache gallery, fell in love with the piece the moment she saw it.
She said: “I love it, it is just a wonderful piece. Pete is a fantastic artist. The day Pete walked into my gallery I kept him. I just hope it sells and we can make a lot of money off it.”
Both Sally and Pete also wanted to thank Ragdolls fine framing, in the Bishopric, after the shop spent the past week re-stringing the canvas and fitting a brand new hand made frame around the piece, all free of charge.
Poppy Appeal organiser, Dianne Loates also thanked the store for their hard work and was very grateful to Sally and Pete for their generosity.
She said: “I think the painting is phenomenal. I think the generosity of both Sally and Pete is absolutely wonderful and also Ragdolls, who framed it.
“It is an emotional painting and the mere fact that the artist has spent many hours doing this and everyone has spent so much time going round arranging for it to be framed gives me a lump in my throat.”
For more information about remembrance in Horsham this week see page 19.