by Tamara Neely

There are two opportunities coming up to socialize and pick up some art at bargain prices. Both are fundraisers, both are in Whitehorse and both feature art with heart.

The first is the Yukon Artists @ Work’s silent auction on April 5 and 6. The second is the Rendezvous Rotary Club’s Experienced Art Auction, taking place on Friday, April 12.

Yukon Artists @ Work

The co-operative of approximately 35 artists have been in their studios creating new pieces of art for their silent auction and the group show taking place through the month.

The whole extravaganza is called An English Garden P’Arty and Group Show and kicks off on the Friday with an opening reception and the first showing of the silent auction items. The next day, the event ramps up with English high tea for civilized socializing and art browsing.

Daphne Mennell, spokesperson for the event, says the silent auction will feature objects that are useful in a garden; things like planters, birdbaths, birdhouses and sculptures. The group show will include paintings, ceramics, glasswork and fabric art.

“The inspiration… is the returning light and most people at this time are thinking about their gardens and spring and green and having fun outside — and that’s the idea behind the Garden P’Arty,” Mennell says. “I don’t know how close we’ll get to an English Garden, but with all the paintings and auction items and some plants around, it’ll help to deceive you into thinking something like that.”

The opening reception for the silent auction and the group show is on April 5, at 5 p.m. The English high tea starts at 1 p.m. on April 6, and ends with the closing of the silent auction at 4 p.m. The group show runs until May 3.

Experienced Art Auction

The Old Fire Hall will be filled with pieces of art representing the tastes of decades past — showcasing the timelessness of creativity.

The Rendezvous Rotary Club is hosting their third Experienced Art Auction on April 12, which draws together artwork from the past and people with an appetite for economical treasure.

The club’s previous auctions, in 2008 and 2011, were good parties and a good way to raise money for charity. There’s also a solid demand for recycled art.

Club President Lois Craig says people dig into their collections of art for pieces they want to unload as a charitable donation and drop off up to five pieces by Saturday, April 6.

The artwork’s original price should be at least $50.

When a given piece sells, the owner will receive 50 per cent of the selling price and a tax receipt for the other 50 per cent.

The Experienced Art Auction is a fundraiser for ShelterBox International Disaster Relief and Habitat for Humanity Yukon, and the art owner has the option of donating the whole selling price to the Rendezvous Rotary Club, which will then split the sale between the two charities.

People have already started to drop off artwork for this year’s auction and so far there are prints from Ted Harrison, Jim Robb and Chris Caldwell among other gems.

“I suspect there will be other well-known Yukon artists’ work in the auction to come,” Craig says. “We’ve had some prints come in that were done from etchings from one of Captain Cook’s trips to the Antarctic in the 1700s — they were done by someone in his crew. So there’s Yukon art, art from across Canada and different parts of the world.”

In previous years, artwork has sold for between $10 and $1,000, with a live auction increasing the excitement of bargain shopping.

“Sometimes it’s people looking for a good deal; some people are looking for something a bit different; some people are just curious and others who want to socialize,” Craig says.

The Rendezvous Rotary Club’s Experienced Art Auction takes place on Friday, April 12, starting at 5 p.m. at The Old Fire Hall.

For more information call Lois Craig at 633-5002. Donations can be dropped off at Assante-Thivierge Financial in Whitehorse at 4137 Fourth Avenue (side entrance on Jarvis Street).