A piece of art by Turner Prize winning Jeremy Deller is up for sale – with the money being donated to pay for accommodation for homeless, Margate artist John Prastitis.
John, 52, has been homeless since being evicted via a section 21 order from his Cliftonville home on January 15.
Since then he and his girlfriend have sofa surfed, slept under bridges, been burnt out of the boathouse at Palm Bay and had windows smashed while they were inside an old caravan at the rear of Dreamland.
The former gallery assistant, who has contact with homelessness organisations Porchlight and RISE, said: ““I literally haven’t been able to go home since January 15.There is nowhere to put anything, I can’t just lay down and sleep or have something to eat if I feel like it.
“I can’t have a cup of tea and watch TV. You are just walking around, there is nothing to do all the time. It is tiring getting through the day. Where does it end, with me under a train?”
But John, who came to the isle more than four years ago because of talk about the burgeoning art scene, found a lifeline with the Prison to Pavement project after going into the Stretch Outsider gallery’s former home in The Centre with a piece of his work.
Dean Stalham, who heads up Stretch Outsider gallery with Carlotta Allum, worked with John who then displayed several pieces in thePrison to Pavement exhibition at The Margate School in the High Street.
Dean previousy worked for the national prison arts charity, the Koestler Foundation, alongside artists Jeremy Deller and Grayson Perry.
Now Dean is selling Monarch of the Glen, a piece created by the 2004 Turner Prize winner, in a bid to raise the cash for a deposit on a room or flat for John.
Dean, who is an artist and writer, said: “I want to find a buyer for my Jeremy Deller piece so thatIi can find a place for John.
“The Monarch of the Glen is a beautiful controversial piece, beautifully framed and signed. It is one of just four with the three others having all sold for between £1000 and £1,500.
“it really is a wonderful work of very unique art by one of this nation’s most brilliant contemporary artists.”
To find out more email Dean at email@example.com