Report on HIAC’s Auction in Vancouver from
Cheryl Milner, Auction Chair
The idea for an auction came to me when I first learned about Zita Cobb who, after having had great success in high-tech business, went back home to Fogo Island, Newfoundland, to see how she could help out. The collapse of the 400-year-old cod-fishery threatened the economic and cultural viability of the region, so Zita, together with her brothers, began the Shorefast Foundation. Shorefast works to create a more diverse local economy through charitable programs and social enterprise businesses including the Fogo Island Inn, Shop, and Artist Studios. In every enterprise, artists and residents from the island are employees and contributors.
What I liked the most about what I read about Zita was her commitment to “cultural resilience,” and I thought that is exactly what HIAC should try to achieve in building an Art Centre: a space that honours the history of artists who have lived here through a permanent collection, but one that also offers a living, breathing space for new works, learning and workshops, for all the arts and the public. In my reading about the Shorefast Foundation, I also saw another potential parallel. It is the big city of Toronto that often supports Shorefast through activities to raise private support in the same way I hoped we could garner Vancouver’s support for Hornby’s Art Centre. HIAC has been aware of Fogo’s funding model for some time, and our Executive Director has even been there and seen the opportunities they have created.
The planning for our HornbyTime fundraiser in Vancouver was fast and furious, having only gotten underway at the beginning of August. We did have a bit of a head start from last year’s attempt where we received a generous donation of $15,000. We also realized that we—the new HIAC Board and staff—needed to prove our capacity: that we were serious about our commitment to programming, serving all of Hornby, and demonstrating the need for the Arts Centre. This year we felt your encouragement, our events overflowed and membership soared, and that momentum carried us through to the success we experienced on Wednesday in Vancouver and at the overwhelming vote of support at HIRRA on the very same night.
The auction itself was held at the old faculty club at UBC, which had been recently renovated and perfectly fit our needs. As people entered the building, they were greeted by Lynne Carmichael, Lyn Frankel, and Carol May. Check-in was at the end of a hall where guests received a drink ticket and an auction paddle: a number attached to piece of Hornby Island driftwood. To the right was a room where all of the live auction art items were professionally lit for viewing. In front of the chairs set for the auction, there was a slide show of Bob Cain’s wonderful photos. To the left, there was a buffet of food and then a little further down the 57 silent auction items where people spent a great deal of time. At 7:30 Kathryn Gretsinger (of CBC fame) welcomed everyone, followed by John McLachlan who played selections from his Call it Home performance and CD, setting the mood with his songs, evocative videos and stories. I presented our case for the Arts Centre, and then the amazing Hank Bull took the stage to run the live auction. In fact, Mr. Bull mentored me through the whole process of creating the auction, as this was my first effort, and I couldn’t have done it without him. He excelled at pointing out the qualities of each piece but also making the whole evening really fun and quite exciting. And just as the artists were generous in providing us with their works, so too were the patrons who bid and purchased so many pieces. Following the live auction, desert was served, and quickly thereafter the silent auction ended. We are still figuring out the precise figure, but taken all together, we conservatively estimate that we netted $50,000 for the building after all expenses and artist percentages.
I need to thank the artists who offered their works and services, the residents who offered their homes, those that provided so many Hornby experiences which will further strengthen ties between residents and patrons of the arts, and those that gave goods and services: these contributions represent the genuine desire on island to see this project completed. There are too many people to list here, but without them the auction would have simply been impossible to consider. Many thanks go out to my amazing auction committee members: Ginny Mulhall, Jennifer Pearson Terell, Lyn Frankel, Carole Arnston, Indika Gnanaratna, Michelle Easterly, Jeffrey Bernstein, Chris Sprague, Paula Temrick, and Noah Morse. Thanks also to Carol Defina, Susan Hoppenfeld, and Richard Lowy for their assistance when it was needed, and thank you to the table captains. We would also like to thank the members of our design team who were able to attend, Lewis and Susanna Morse. Special thanks the Hornby Festival for helping get the word out. John McLachlan was a total star in my eyes for his brilliant design for the postcard and promotional material, for laying out the catalogue, and for coming and playing and just being so kind and supportive throughout.
We will be following up with individual artists and contributors as fast as we are able. Almost everything sold and the entire event was so well received!
So many thanks to all who helped!
On Behalf of HIAC,
Dear Hornby Arts Supporters, and Vancouverites,
Now is the time to claim your seat at one of the most Engaging Auctions of the Year.
There will be fascinating sculpture by Wayne Ngan, Persimmon Blackridge, and Michael Campbell (see Michael’s Boat on the Hornby Arts Facebook Page). Scroll down for sneak peaks!
Paintings by Gordon Payne, Ane Zielinski, Vaugh Neville, Jolayne Devente, Tania Gleave, Tina Harrison, Peter Kiss, Roberta Sutherland and so many more.
And as special surprise, imagine being able to bid on a very special Gordon Smith.
Kathryn Gretsinger (of CBC fame) will be our MC, and VAG trustee, Hank Bull will be the auctioneer.
Silent auction items/services will feature, Pyrra jewelry, a Fluevog gift certificate, BC Ferry passes, holiday time in Hawaii, Hornby, and smaller art pieces.
John McLachlan will be playing from his gorgeous Call it Home CD, complete with a video screening.
This event will appeal to all budgets.
Tell your friends about this event! Bring out your Hornby gang, or Vancouverites come and see the beautiful modern art. Few pieces are representational of Hornby, and those that are will transport you here.
Place: Sage Bistro at UBC, behind the Chan Centre 6331 Crescent Road
Time: 7 – 11 p.m.
Date: October 10, 2018
Tickets: $125 each, with a $75 tax receipt
Auctioneer: Hank Bull
For those of you who know Tom Burrows beautiful resin pieces, this is one that you have the unique opportunity to bid on. You’re going have to outbid me on this piece!
Here is a beautiful piece by Wayne Ngan. Originally destined for a Gallery in New York, but Wayne very generously offered it to us for our charitable event.
You’re not going to want to miss this fascinating sculpture called “Field Recordings of Icebergs Melting,” by Michael Campbell.
Anne Zielinski’s Cinnabar Cow Parsnips