September 15, 20013
I’ve had a busy weekend having a painting in charity auctions both Friday and Saturday evenings. Both of these events showed respect for the artists they asked to donate by also inviting them to attend the event. Some charities are not doing this. They expect artists to contribute a framed painting they may have spent a lot of time on. The painting is good enough to be at the event but not the artist. Even getting information after the event concerning how much the painting sold for and to whom is sometimes difficult. Once we have contributed the painting, that’s all they want to hear from us. I recently received a request for a painting for a charity auction but the letter said I will not be invited to the event unless I contribute a piece worth at least $450. I think I’ll pass on that.
There could actually be some value to the charity by including artists on their guest list. I was invited to contribute a painting to the Joshua Center by a relative who had been helped by the work they do, which is providing information to parents and services to children with neurological disorders. I didn’t know much about what they actually do until I attended and heard the master of ceremonies explain that. I was also impressed by the number of people who attended, many of them parents. This seems like an organization I would be willing to donate to again.
Even the IRS doesn’t think much of the worth of what we artists do. The painting which I donated to the Joshua Center auction sold for $120. I think that should mean that I donated $120 to that organization because they now have that money to spend. The IRS shows a lack of respect for artists when it says I can count as a donation only the cost of the frame, paint, and canvas.
We as artists are not the bunch of weirdos some people think we are. Our means of expression is different from the spoken or written word but we are also seeking to communicate, We are willing to contribute to contribute to our communities. We deserve respect.