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Hamilton artists donate works to online auction in support of refugee family

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Hamilton artists donate works to online auction in support of refugee family

Members of Hamilton’s arts community have come together in an effort to help raise funds in support of a refugee family who arrived in the country a short time ago.

Just Art is an online auction that launches this Friday (Dec. 4) and features works of art from several prominent Hamilton artists.

According to a press release, Hamilton artists have contributed more than 50 pieces to support an Iranian mother and her two daughters who arrived in Canada in September and were among the first refugees allowed here after a six-month COVID-19-related suspension on immigration.

Some of the many artists featured include Sylvia Simpson, E. Robert Ross, Tom Wilson, Lee Munn, Sandee Ewasiuk, and Gordon Leverton.

Bidding on the works starts Dec. 4 and runs until Dec.10. The catalogue and more information can be found on the Just Art website.

The release says that interested buyers can peruse the catalogue now and should note that right up until bidding starts more works will be added.

“Just Art resonated significantly with me, as my art subjects are homes, and I attempt to capture the beauty of the home in the community they serve,” said local painter, Gordon Leverton, in the release.

“I’m proud to participate, knowing that all proceeds will support this refugee family of three women settle in our community.”

The family’s first year in the country is being privately sponsored and supported by a group of volunteers from the Church of St John the Evangelist in Hamilton, as well as community members who are helping to organize housing and connecting the family to health care and language classes.

“It’s been challenging to undertake the many necessary settlement tasks in the midst of a pandemic, but we are wrapping our arms around the family as best we can,” said host committee member, Sarah Wayland.

“We’d been looking for pandemic-friendly ideas for fundraising, and decided that a focus on art was fitting as the women are all artistic themselves. Each of them created art as an outlet during the time they waited to be resettled in Canada.”

Proceeds from the auction will go directly to helping the family with costs such as rent, groceries and other essential needs, estimated to be at least $46,000 for the first year.

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