They were once humble chairs. Now, they’re works of art you can own. Visit Mayfair Mall until August 26, and Take a seat, for Habitat.
“It’s amazing because all of them started with the same sort of ordinary wooden chair that you’ve seen in schools forever” explains Habitat Victoria executive director Yolanda Meijer.
“They all come from the old Oak Bay High School…
“So you hand them a chair, and then thirty-three artists take it away, and come back with something completely different.”
It’s the second year for this very artistic fundraiser. Contributors include Robert Bateman.
“Imagine that” gushes Meijer “an artist of that kind of renown, doing an original work here, absolutely adorable, of an otter, and somebody could own an original Bateman by helping our fundraiser!”
“My wife and I really respect Habitat for Humanity and what they do…what they stand for.” says Coast Salish artist Herb Rice.
Rice wove the Legend of the Raven into his chair.
“What I really liked about this…doing this piece, was the actual engineering of it. The wing comes off, the mask comes off…”
Kristofer Parley, who created a cityscape you can sit on, was thrilled to donate his talents.
“I can’t think of any other, better cause in the city here to donate to” says Parley.
Because one-hundred percent of proceeds from this fundraiser will help local families purchase their first home.
Meijer explains the philosophy of Habitat for Humanity.
“We believe that it’s the equity building that can break a cycle, often of poverty, and so we know how affordable housing is an issue here, and Habitat is one way of hitting that.”
And Habitat is grateful for the hundreds of volunteers who give their time to help others.
“It’s such a good cause, and this is such a fun place to be” says volunteer Sue Powell with a smile.
Volunteer Joanne Kenzie agrees. “I’m glad to see people getting a leg up and getting a hand, especially in Victoria where housing prices are so high, it’s nice that people who are in need can get housed in a decent place.”
So how can you help?
“One is by just donating to vote for your favourite, and that could be a toonie, it could be anything you need it to be.
“And the other way is to actually bid on a chair. There are reserved bid on all of the chairs because we want to respect the value of the work and the time that the artist put into it, and they vary from chair to chair, so we’re hoping to raise about 20-thousand dollars from our event.”