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The Big Issue is auctioning 9 unique artist-customised Fender Stratocasters to support its vendors over winter

(Image credit: The Big Issue)

The Big Issue has teamed up with Creative Giants and The Auction Collective to produce 9 heavily customised Fender Stratocasters that will be auctioned to support homeless and vulnerable people over winter.

The Strats were donated by Fender and will be sold as part of The Big Art Auction, which will be live-streamed on 4 November with video messages from the contributing artists.

Speaking in the Big Issue, the street magazine's managing director Russell Blackman said that this was particularly difficult time for vendors, with the pandemic reducing footfall in the high-street. The Big Art Auction will raise much-needed funds.

“We are delighted to be working with Creative Giants and The Auction Collective on this hugely exciting event," said Blackman. The Big Art Auction comes off the back of an idea originally sparked from a kind donation from the legendary guitar manufacturer Fender and the timing couldn’t be better."

Twenty-one artists were involved with the event, with a variety of paintings, sculptures and prints joining the guitars under the hammer. 

The designs are incredible. Some, such as Goldie's Splattocaster and Gavin Turk's Turn It Up Strat you can play. Others maybe not. 

The Portuguese installation artist Joana Vasconcelos covered her Flower Power Strat in a knitted-wool floral pattern, while conceptual artist and photographer Bran Symondson's Change Stratocaster is covered in US Dollar bills arranged as butterfly origami.

The Big Art Auction comes off the back of an idea originally sparked from a kind donation from the legendary guitar manufacturer Fender and the timing couldn’t be better

Russell Blackman, Big Issue

Joe Rush of Mutant Waste Company mounted his Strat on wood, covered it in plastic anatomic bones with valves from a Marshall amplifier extended out of a skull.

Other artists turned loose on the Strats included Glaswegian illustrator Rugman (Anthony McEwan), contemporary multidisciplinary artist Lauren Baker, who converted her Electric Star with a signature flash of neon, Portuguese street artist Vhils, and Jamie Reid, who designed the Sex Pistol's Never Mind The Bollocks cover.

Register for the auction at The Auction Collective

Support the Big Issue here.