FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
IN RESPONSE TO CORONAVIRUS CONCERNS, VENICE FAMILY CLINIC ART WALK & AUCTION WILL EXCLUSIVELY BE AN ONLINE AUCTION
Nonprofit Community Health Center’s Signature Fundraiser Shifted from Large Public Event to Ensure Public Health is Protected
LOS ANGELES, CA (March 11, 2020) – In response to growing public concerns about the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19), Venice Family Clinic announced today that its signature fundraising event, Venice Family Clinic Art Walk & Auction, will be an online auction to avoid any potential health risks associated with being at large public gatherings at this time. The community celebration, which includes tours of local artists’ studios as well as live music, a beer and wine garden, and a family fun zone, will be postponed.
This year the Clinic will honor renowned architect Frank Gehry, who is one of the founders of the Venice Art Walk. The online auction will feature over 200 works by nationally recognized contemporary artists, including Kelly Akashi, Peter Alexander, Charles Arnoldi, Gary Baseman, Billy Al Bengston, Kelly Berg, Enrique Martinez Celaya, Greg Colson, Guy Dill, Laddie John Dill, Jean Edelstein, Timo Fahler, FriendsWithYou, Joe Goode, DJ Hall, Channing Hansen, Lynn Hanson, Kenny Harris, Toba Khedoori, Andy Moses, Renee Petropoulos, Vanessa Prager, Ed Ruscha, Alison Saar, Analia Saban, Kim Schoenstadt, Gregory Siff, The Haas Brothers, Vasa, and many more.
The online auction will be conducted through Venice Family Clinic with a well-established online auction house. The nonprofit community health center is also exploring options for collectors and supporters to engage in lieu of attending a public event that usually draws 6,000 people.
“We recognize Venice Family Clinic Art Walk & Auction is a beloved community tradition, and it is one we plan to continue for many years to come,” said Elizabeth Benson Forer, Venice Family Clinic chief executive officer. “At this time, however, shifting to an online auction is a prudent and responsible course of action that will ensure we can continue to reach the largest possible audience and protect the public’s health. Please know that times like these are when we most need your support to ensure Venice Family Clinic can continue its vital work to keep all of us healthy.”
Venice Family Clinic Art Walk & Auction began in 1979, when the Clinic was on the verge of closing its doors because of a lack of funding. A group of Clinic supporters gathered with local artists and created the first art walk to ensure continued vital medical services for the community. Since then, Venice Family Clinic Art Walk & Auction has raised more than $23 million to provide comprehensive primary care to people who might otherwise have nowhere to get the help they need to get well and stay healthy.
“Venice Family Clinic Art Walk & Auction owes its success to our artists, studio tour artists, sponsors, donors, volunteers and the community,” said Naveena Ponnusamy, the Clinic’s chief development and communications officer. “This is one of our biggest fundraisers of the year, and their continued support will be as crucial as ever during this year’s transition.”
About Venice Family Clinic
Venice Family Clinic is a leader in providing comprehensive, high-quality primary health care to people living in poverty. Now celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, the Clinic has grown from a small storefront operation into one of Los Angeles’ leading community health centers, providing care to nearly 28,000 men, women and children annually through 12 sites in Venice, Santa Monica, Mar Vista, Inglewood and Culver City. The Clinic leads the way in providing comprehensive and integrated care by creating a one-stop health system that offers multiple services, often at the same locations and same time as primary care appointments. These services include dental care, substance use treatment, mental health services, vision screenings, child development classes, health education, prescription medications, domestic violence counseling, HIV/AIDS services, street medicine for people experiencing homelessness and health insurance enrollment services. For more information, visit VeniceFamilyClinic.org. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.