Just two weeks prior to the above date, Shirley, our president, moved by the situation in Ukraine, suggested at the AGM that we could do an art fair to raise some money to help the people of Ukraine. This was unanimously agreed by those present at the meeting and by council members. Subsequently Shirley met with Stuart at Calder Graphics in the Byram Arcade, in Huddersfield Town Centre and arranged to have a stall on the ground floor of the arcade on Saturday 19th.
Emails went out to members of the society asking for art donations and requesting that people publicise it as much as possible. With a group of volunteers, the stall was set up on the Friday afternoon with an amazing array of different art works that had been donated. Stuart was incredibly helpful bringing down several tables that we could use, including table top and floor standing easels, and holding various art works in his studio as things came in prior to setting up. He also said we could have a raffle so a painting by Bruce Mulcahy was selected to be the first prize, with a print by Glen Williams as the second prize. The tables were loaded with colour and beautiful works - it was a marvellous site!
For the day Shirley had drafted a rota of volunteers making sure that there were at least 4 people on for every two hours, but in the end there were often more people who dropped in for an hour or two to help, often bringing extra art work to display and sell. One of the many highlights of the whole event was the feeling of friendship and solidarity as members from the different groups of the society joined together helping to make it happen, catching up on news and sharing some painting stories.
The public were also amazing - we had keen visitors even during the set up on Friday afternoon who wanted to contribute to our efforts and buy work as we were setting it out on the tables. During Saturday, again Stuart and Angie from Calder Graphics were incredibly helpful and supportive, as were many of the shop owners within the Byram Arcade, dropping by to see what we were doing, encouraging us in our endeavour and supporting us and the Ukraine by purchasing art works and raffle tickets. The morning in particular was incredibly busy and many members of the public were keen to support our efforts, loved seeing the range of work produced by members of the society and were interested in what the society does, Maybe, we might even get some new people looking to join!
On the day we raised an amazing £ 1213!
Update: Shirley held a further session the following Saturday and made a further £233.27, making a new grand total of £1,446.27! All this money will go to a charity supporting people from Ukraine.
At the end of the day we still had some artworks left over, which were carefully stored in Stuart's studio room temporarily but efforts will be made either to sell these works in the next few weeks or pass some of them on to other charity events supporting help for Ukraine.
Many thanks go to Shirley our president for her initial inspiration and all the work she did organising the event so quickly, pulling us all together in such a successful way. We also thank all the shop owners in the Byram Arcade who were especially accommodating and supportive, and in particular Stuart and Angie at Calder Graphics. And thanks go to you, our marvellous members, who donated so much wonderful work to sell and volunteered your help to make it happen.