John Cleese, Arsene Wenger, Martin Johnson and Matt Lucas are just some of the celebrities sharing their precious keepsakes, alongside people living with life threatening conditions in a photography exhibition from April 4 to 17 at the SW1 Gallery, London SW1 organised by national charity, the Willow Foundation. The photographs and interviews are also featured in a book, entitled ‘Keepsakes’, also released on April 4.
The exhibition recognises ten years of the Willow Foundation, a charity set up by Arsenal legend and former TV presenter, Bob Wilson and his wife, Megs, that provides special days for seriously ill 16 to 40 year olds throughout the UK.
Celebrities and supporters will attend a private view and fundraising event on April 6 from 6.30pm when signed photographs from the exhibition will be auctioned alongside top prizes linked to the celebrity including a tour of Tottenham training ground, a box at Arsenal and a visit to the Radio One studio.
Top UK photographers have taken part in the exhibition, creating striking images of the celebrities who are supporting the charity. Signifying the special days that the Willow Foundation creates, celebrities including Joe Calzaghe, Adrian Chiles, John Cleese, David Coulthard, Sir Alex Ferguson, Martin Johnson, Natasha Kaplinsky, Matt Lucas, Harry Redknapp, Gary Rhodes, Hardeep Singh Kohli, Theo Walcott, Arsene Wenger, Tim Westwood, Bob Wilson, Professor Robert Winston and Edith Bowman have been photographed with a special momento and told the story behind it.
Alongside the celebrities, people who have had a Willow Foundation special day over the past ten years have been photographed with a keepsake from their day. In some cases, a loved one has been photographed where someone has sadly passed away since their special day.
In all cases, the photographs tell a moving story about the impact a special day can have on their whole life, not just one day. Photographs and interviews are featured in the Keepsakes book which is available to buy at www.willowfoundation.org.uk priced at £10.
To date the Willow Foundation has provided more than 4,500 of these special days, for people living with cancer, cystic fibrosis, motor neurone disease, organ failure, muscular dystrophy and Huntington’s, amongst other conditions.
Top photographers have provided their time free of charge for this exhibition and include Robert Wilson, Seamus Ryan, Hamish Brown, Nick Daly, Nick Dawe, Michael Donald, Jillian Edelstein, Oliver Martin and Gino Sprio.
”This collection of stunning photographs convey what the Willow Foundation is all about – happy times and special memories. We’ve been bowled over by the number of celebrities and photographers who have given up their time to make Keepsakes possible. We hope that it will go some way to helping us achieve our ultimate goal of providing a special day for every seriously ill 16 to 40 year old in the UK,” said Bob Wilson.
Keepsakes has been generously sponsored by St James’s Place Wealth Management.
Information about the Keepsakes exhibition
Buy the keepsakes book