Fine Arts

Part of Ulster Bank’s extensive art collection goes under the hammer

All sale proceeds from the Morgan O’Driscoll online auction will go to the philanthropic hub Community Foundation Ireland

The Road Bends, by Donald Teskey, which will be on offer in Morgan O’Driscoll’s online auction in aid of Community Foundation Ireland. Picture: Phil Pound

The affaire de coeur between financial institutions and the art world has been in play since the time of the Renaissance, when merchant bankers on the continent – such as the Medici of Florence – funded artwork, particularly as a means to guarantee themselves a stairway to heaven.

The practice of banks continuing to collect art has persisted since then for a plethora of reasons, with some banking institutions amassing enormous and impressive legacy art ...