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ERDEM’S EFFORTS: Less than a month after Erdem Moralioglu debuts his fall 2016 collection, he’ll be curating a very different type of show — one filled with some of his favorite contemporary art.

WWD has learned the designer is teaming with Sotheby’s in London on an auction that will take place March 15. It will be centered on the art and artists that most inspire him and dovetail with his creative DNA.

Moralioglu has handpicked a group of artworks that will form the core of the sale, and he’ll also be curating the look of the catalogue and the feel of the galleries where some of the work will be displayed ahead of the “Contemporary Curated” sale.

The aim of the venture, Sotheby’s said, is to make contemporary art “accessible and enjoyable by telling its story through the voice of one of the world’s best designers.”

The designer has handpicked works that inspire him most, as both a designer and a collector, Sotheby’s said. His picks include works by Yayoi Kusama and Antony Gormley, as well as abstract and American figurative painting and photography.

The auction will include 205 works, and the sale is expected to realize between 2.5 million and 3.5 million pounds, or $3.6 million to $5.1 million at current exchange. The pre-sale exhibition will be open to the public from March 11 to 14.

The designer said art has always been part of his life.

“My mother would read to my sister and me every night and show us art books. She was a very visual person. When we visited England, her home country, we would go to places like the National Gallery and The British Museum. She always encouraged us to be creative. When I moved to London to study at the Royal College of Art my interest in art continued. I’m constantly looking to art for inspiration. It can often be a catalyst for what I’m exploring for the season.

“For my current collection I was looking at the European emigrants in the late 19th century who moved into the great plains of western America. I was looking at Andrew Wyeth’s realist paintings, in particular the piece titled Christina’s World,” he said.

The designer said he started collecting art about seven years ago and the first thing he bought was a photograph by Wolfgang Tillmans. “Initially, I only looked at photography, but recently I’ve become interested in illustration and painting. Most recently, I have bought work by Rineke Dijkstra, Candida Höfer and a Hockney photo collage.”

Moralioglu said his favorite pieces are on display in his South Audley street store, including the Hockney collage and drawings by Andy Warhol and Jean Cocteau. “My house is under construction, so most of the art is in storage or propped up at the studio,” he said.

The auction is not the first time that Erdem has worked with Sotheby’s. Late last year the designer partnered with the auction house for the launch event of Erdem X, a folio of 10 photographs by Sølve Sundsbø to mark his 10-year anniversary.

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