SIDNEY — Gateway Arts Council (GAC) is looking for candidates for its 2015 Bad Art by Good People Art Election.
But not just any candidate will do. This year, Gateway is looking to fill the candidate slate with local veterans.
“This year, voting for a favorite bad artist will begin at the Shelby County Historical Society’s Vietnam Wall exhibit. Since the kickoff will be at such at hallowed exhibit, it was clear that the artists should be veterans,” said GAC Executive Director Ellen Keyes.
This year’s artwork theme will be “Service to Country.” According to Keyes, GAC is working to ensure each branch of the military, as well as service from different wars, is represented.
“It is important for us to pay honor to those who have risked everything for us,” said Keyes.
Twenty-four local veterans will be given blank, 16-inch by 20-inch canvases and partnered with professional artists to create a pieces of art fitting the theme.
Over the next week Theresa Manteuffel, who is retired from the U.S. Air Force, and Chuck Craynon, who is retired from the U.S. Marine Corps, and Gateway supporters will canvass the county looking for veterans to participate. Christopher Gibbs, GAC president, called this a welcome partnership.
“Part of our mission at the Gateway is enrichment of the community. This partnership accepts this mission head on,” he said.
These artists will not only be creating artworks; they will be fighting for community votes. Once all the artwork is completed, the election process will begin. Every member of the community will be encouraged to vote and vote as many times as he likes for his favorite artwork. Voting will cost $1 per vote.
Once GAC reaches its funding goal of $10,000, 50 percent of all proceeds above that amount will be donated to the VA Hospice.
“There is not a lot of fundraising going on for Veterans Administration Hospice, so we were thrilled when this opportunity came along,” Manteuffel said.
“While this event is a fundraiser for both organizations, we envision that it will be a lot more,” said Craynon. “Those of us who are working to make this event happen see it as a way to pay honor to those individuals who put their lives on the line so we can be free.”
Proceeds from the election will help GAC provide artistic experiences and entertainment to Sidney and the Shelby County community.
The official Election for the Arts goes from Sept. 1 through Oct. 1.
The Bad Art by Good People Inaugural Ball will be Oct. 1 at The Palazzo in Botkins. This ball will feature a social hour and dinner, and the bad art will be auctioned. Tickets for the event are $25 per person and can be purchased at the GAC gallery, 216 N. Miami Ave.