Boy George unveils his Planet Punk artwork as WaterAid announces artists and celebrities behind the art in secret auction

Posted by
Rachel Sewell
4 October 2022
WaterAid/ Oliver Dixon

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Artwork from artists and celebrities including Boy George, Damien Hirst and Rankin have now been matched with their creator following WaterAid’s Art of Change secret auction.   

Launched at a special preview event at London’s Saatchi Gallery on Thursday 29 September and held for the duration of British Art Fair the art in the auction was kept anonymous. Following the auction’s close on 2 October, the artwork and artists have now been paired up, including Boy George’s bedazzled You Planet Punk piece and Damien Hirst’s Twist and Shout.  

The collection featured climate-themed works and the funds raised by the auction will be used to mitigate the devastating impact of climate change on vulnerable communities’ access to clean water. All the artists involved are kindly donating between 50% to 100% of their sale to WaterAid, helping to bring clean water to everyone, everywhere. 

The artworks were by the following artists: 

  • Ben Okri & Rosemary Clunie collaboration, in dry times how deep are your roots 
  • Boy George, You Planet Punk 
  • Carolyn Trant, Arcadia with Mosquitos 
  • Carrie Reichardt, Greed is stopping our human evolution 
  • Damien Hirst, Twist and Shout 
  • David Hockney, Untitled 468 
  • Giles Deacon, A prophetic sea nymph 
  • Haseebah Ali, Emerald Floods 
  • Henry Ward, Shed Painting  
  • Heywood & Condie, Born to be Wild 
  • Jessica Albarn, Blue Shadow Bees 
  • Jonathan Barnes, The Sphinx 
  • Julian Wild, Stripping the Willow no.5 
  • Nettie Wakefield, Your Plaice or Mine 
  • Pure Evil, Aristotle Onassis’ Nightmare 
  • Rankin, Flower Power 
  • Rowena Easton, Tributary 
  • Sir Peter Blake, The Beatles 
  • The Connor Brothers, tell him I was too fxxxxx busy 

One in ten people worldwide do not have clean water close to home. With more extreme weather such as more droughts and floods, it’s becoming even harder for the most vulnerable communities to access clean water, which is affecting women and girls the most as the burden of collecting water for the family often falls upon them. 

Tim Wainwright, WaterAid’s Chief Executive, said:  

“The climate crisis is the biggest threat of our lifetime, and art is an amazing way to highlight the issue, share thoughts and ideas and bring emotion across. Art stimulates creativity of the mind, which is what we need to address the global change that is on our doorstep – and is impacting vulnerable communities across the globe. 

“Working in partnership with British Art Fair, we are so pleased to have curated these incredible pieces, all highlighting the devastating crisis happening to our people and planet currently. This year we have seen heatwaves, floods, droughts, hunger and disease outbreaks. Water is at the centre of the climate crisis and therefore must be at the centre of our climate fight.” 

See the final bids at and join the conversation online using #ArtOfChange. 


For more information, please contact:  

In London: Rachel Sewell, PR Manager, [email protected] or Jemima Young, Senior Media Officer, [email protected], or call our after-hours press line on +44 (0)7887 521 552   

Notes to Editors:  

WaterAid is working to make clean water, decent toilets and good hygiene normal for everyone, everywhere within a generation. The international not-for-profit organisation works in 28 countries to change the lives of the poorest and most marginalised people. Since 1981, WaterAid has reached 28 million people with clean water and nearly 29 million people with decent toilets.  

For more information, visit our website, follow us on Twitter @WaterAidUK, @WaterAid or @WaterAidPress, or find us on Facebook, LinkedIn or Instagram.  

771 million people in the world – one in ten – do not have clean water close to home.[1]  

1.7 billion people in the world – more than one in five – do not have a decent toilet of their own.[2]  

Around 290,000 children under five die every year from diarrhoeal diseases caused by poor water and sanitation. That's more than 800 children a day, or one child every two minutes.[3]  

Every £1 invested in water and toilets returns an average of £4 in increased productivity.[4]  

Just £15 can provide one person with clean water.[5]  

WHO/UNICEF (2021) Progress on household drinking water, sanitation and hygiene 2000-2020. Joint Monitoring Programme. Geneva: World Health Organisation.   

WHO/UNICEF (2021) Progress on household drinking water, sanitation and hygiene 2000-2020. Joint Monitoring Programme. Geneva: World Health Organisation.   

WaterAid calculations based on: Prüss-Ustün A, et al. (2019). Burden of Disease from Inadequate Water, Sanitation and Hygiene for Selected Adverse Health Outcomes: An Updated Analysis with a Focus on Low- and Middle-Income Countries. International Journal of Hygiene and Environmental Health. vol 222, no 5, pp 765-777. AND The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (2020) Global Burden of Disease Study 2019. Seattle, WA: University of Washington.   

World Health organization (2012) Global costs and benefits of drinking-water supply and sanitation interventions to reach the MDG target and universal coverage  

Since 1985, Saatchi Gallery has provided an innovative platform for contemporary art. Exhibitions have presented works by largely unseen young artists, or by international artists whose work has been rarely or never exhibited in the UK. This approach has made the Gallery one of the most recognised names in contemporary art. Since moving to its current 70,000 square feet space in the Duke of York’s Headquarters in Chelsea, London, the Gallery has welcomed over 10 million visitors. The Gallery hosts thousands of school visits annually and has over 6 million followers on social media. In 2019, Charles Saatchi formally stepped back from his management of Saatchi Gallery with the organisation beginning a new chapter in its history as a fully independent registered charity. Saatchi Gallery has an expansive education and learning programme and partners with a wide variety of schools, colleges, universities and community organisations.  

Registered Charity Number: 1182328 

#saatchigallery @saatchi_gallery 

Saatchi Gallery, Duke of York's HQ, King's Rd, Chelsea, London SW3 4RY 

Founded in 1988, British Art Fair is the only fair dedicated to Modern and Contemporary British Art. Its showcase of paintings, drawings, prints and sculptures covers all the important artistic movements of the past 100 years. Most of the great names of 20th century British art are represented: Frank Auerbach, David Bomberg, Lucian Freud, Elisabeth Frink, Terry Frost, Barbara Hepworth, David Hockney, L..S. Lowry, Henry Moore, Paul Nash, John Piper, Bridget Riley, Walter Sickert and Graham Sutherland alongside contemporary names such as Grayson Perry, Banksy and many others of the 21st century. Much of the work is privately sourced and fresh to the market, and dealers – many of whom have been with the fair since its inception – keep work back for it each year. The result is a niche event of the highest quality. 

British Art Fair 

28th September to 1st October 2023

Saatchi Gallery, Duke of York Square, King’s Road, London SW3 4RY @britishartfair 

British Art Fair Press Contact:  Jessica Wood, [email protected] 07939 226988