Through the month of August, D.C.’s Capitol Hill Arts Workshop (CHAW) is teaming up Serve Your City to sponsor “Art for Mutual Aid,” a fundraising project that benefits grassroots efforts to support at-risk minority communities impacted by Covid-19. Thirty-five DMV area artists have donated prints of original artwork available for sale via the CHAW website until August 31, and all proceeds minus the cost of printing will go directly to the Ward 6 Mutual Aid Network (W6MA). The network, organized with partners by Serve Your City, provides supplies, resources and outreach in direct response to needs expressed by the community.
“It has been great organizing this fundraiser for my community,” says CHAW’s project director Adi Segal. “As an artist and recent social work graduate, I am excited to help support W6MA efforts through organizing my community of local artists.”
Patrons can purchase 8×10 inch archival paper prints of digitally reproduced artwork donated by local artists for $50. A variety of artistic styles are represented, and several artists have provided descriptions of the pieces they’ve chosen to include in the fundraiser.
“The Soldier of U Street” by Imar Hutchins is a hand-drawn sketch; “Tambourine Free Fall VI” by Chee Keong Kung is from a geometric, abstract ink and acrylic work. One print, a reproduction of a digital photograph by Elizabeth Dranitzke, features a mask-wearing man in front of the MLK Memorial holding up a painting.
“Sage and his beautiful handmade sign caught my eye at one of the Black Lives Matter protests earlier this summer and I asked if I could photograph him,” writes the artist. “It turns out he’d only started painting again recently and this was one of his first pieces. His creativity, positivity and warmth give me hope for the future.”
Segal says the fundraiser was inspired by a recent one in Baltimore, Images for Baltimore, which raised funds for the Maryland Food Bank, and also one in Queens, NY, Pictures for Elmhurst, which raised over $1.3 million for Elmhurst Hospital’s COVID-19 response.
To date, DC’s Ward 6 Mutual Aid Network has partnered with 35 partner organizations and 100 active volunteers to deliver more than $20,000 in groceries, masks and supplies at seven distribution pods. The network has also provided critical public health information, connected students with tutors and distributed 100 laptops and tablets.
CHAW is participating in the network by serving as a collection point for food donations and art supplies and a hub for distribution. In addition to or in lieu of purchasing artwork, patrons can also donate directly via the program’s “Paint Bucket” campaign, which helps bring art education to children in need during the pandemic.
Visit www.art-mutual-aid.chaw.org to learn more or purchase art.
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