Magazine article Art Business News

Artists Aid Tsunami and More

Magazine article Art Business News

Artists Aid Tsunami and More

Article excerpt

In last month's editorial, "Tsunami Requires Response," page 14, Susanne Casgar, editorial director, asked "how is the art market responding? What are artists, publishers, art organizations and galleries doing to assist with the relief efforts?" The following efforts have come to our attention since the February editorial appeared. ABN will continue to report art-related tsunami relief efforts in the months ahead as we become aware of events and stories from our readers. Send your information to Lyndsey Walker, assistant editor, at, or call 216-750-0356.

Elephant Paints on eBay

Artist Melissa Leaym-Fernandez has posted her limited edition, "Edification," on eBay (item #3776714522) and will donate 60 percent of the sales to tsunami aid in Sri Lanka. Leaym-Fernandez, who is half Sri Lankan, hopes to donate $45,000, which will be possible if her portfolio sells out.

"I have spoken to my sister in Colombo, Sri Lanka, and she has shared some of the horrific stories and the long-term need within the area," says Leaym-Fernandez. "I really hope that I can sell all of the prints. I have been studying elephants for years and travel onsite to interview handlers and keepers, take photos and get inspired by the animals' personalities to create my art--all of my work is elephant related."

Leaym-Fernandez explains that all of the money raised for the relief efforts was initially supposed to go toward the start-up of her own art studio. "I have wanted to work as a professional artist all of my life, but I am giving it all up for this little island-country that aches for support. I know it may sound corny, but I have seen and heard the sorrow within the area, and I know that I would be the same way if my children were gone--how can I not help? I can earn studio/business money another time."

Web-Site Aid

The Web site has been created to allow artists to donate works to their favorite charities, and many are using the program to aid tsunami victims. Artworks that are donated are then sold online to customers and a percentage of each sale goes to the charity that the artist designates. Artists wanting to contribute to the relief efforts should visit

The percentage of each sale allocated to the charity varies depending upon the level of the artist. All artists can set their own prices, ensuring that their artwork is not undervalued. Premier and professional artists may choose to receive up to 40 percent of the sale from their donated work. takes 20 percent of the sales to cover overhead and expenses, while the remaining percentage (40 to 80 percent) is given to the charity that the artist has chosen. Sales from amateur and children's work are divided between the charity and only--with 70 percent going to the charity and 30 percent to the organization.

"The goal of is to allow artists to easily contribute to the causes they believe in," states creator and owner Lori Faunce, "as well as create a community for artists and provide opportunities for them to expand their businesses. …

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