Monticello Road is a community arts project in Charlottesville, Virginia. Through photography and a series of public events and conversations, we explore how an art can be an essential, integral and everyday part of a healthy community.
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Monday, April 26, 2010
San Angelo (scratch board). Oil pastel on inked mat board, 4" x 6" 2010.
When I was first getting started as an artist I planned to donate a sculpture to an auction to benefit the homeless of Washington, DC. Unable to decide which piece to give, I asked one of my mentors for advice. His response: “Give your best piece.” It’s always hard for an artist to give up their work, so the idea of giving away my favorite was a bitter pill to swallow.
He was right though: it’s only a donation if the piece actually sells. So if you wish to benefit a cause, you need to make the sacrifice and anyway the business reasons for making the donation redound the most if you put your absolute best foot forward. The desirable audience that attends the gala is impressed with your strong work and the art shows—and moves—well. Everyone comes away happy.
I took his advice and the piece sold and I gained a new patron as well as good karma and a tax deduction; an example of doing well by doing good.
I have that advice in mind as I prepare for this weekend’s Wet Paint gala to benefit the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts (VCCA). VCCA is one of the nation’s most established artist communities and a beacon for the visual arts in Central Virginia. Like so many other artists, VCCA holds a special place in my heart and I made some of my best work while I was there. Much that I have done since was inspired by that magical place.
I wanted to contribute something worthy that would be a response to my residency there. I am proud of the result and you can see it this Saturday night. Buy a ticket, make a bid. The cause is more than worthy and hopefully you’ll walk away with an important and resonant work of art.
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