Sunday, April 15, 2012


We went to a Drawing Rally (fundraiser/benefit) at the ArtStart Gallery on Friday the 13th.  What fun! 
ArtStart (sponsored by the City of Santa Rosa) says it best in their own statement:

"Our vision is to create a healthy community that takes pride in inspiring and supporting our young artists; a community where the diversity of talent and perspectives are encouraged and celebrated; a community that finds inspiration in the joy of the creative process. The humanity of art influences, enriches, transforms and teaches all of us the spiritual expression of being human."

To that end, Art Start has created over 150 painted park benches, and bus-stop benches, 34 large murals, and several installations around the city.  They are beautiful works of art...I'm sure you've seen a few.  One of my friends thought ArtStart was just for little kids...but no!  Their program helps student artists of all ages and stripes.  

For the Rally, Art Start invited forty artists who had been involved with their program in the past to donate their talent and time and help raise money.  They built a square of tables under a tent behind the gallery, and each of three groups of artists had 40 minutes during which to create works of art (on 8x10 pieces of paper) for a silent auction. 

Potential buyers wandered around the square, watching the artists at work.  Chefs tossed dough into the air and churned out yummy pizzas, baked in a stone wood-burning oven, while the ArtStart admin folk manned a beer-and-wine bar, with music provided by local DJ's. 

Jeff and I hung around for an hour or so - long enough to see the first set of pictures go through both their creation and silent auction.  (Yep, we bought one!)  We left when the place got crowded...although I was sorely tempted to watch the next two groups draw.  One of my sons was there, and I ran into a couple of ex-theatre students, too - all donating their time as artists.  Great to see them!  Everyone seemed to be having a fantastic time - artists and buyers alike.

Kudos to ArtStart!!   Our day was topped off by a fabulous sunset...

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