For many, it’s personal: Why artists support Venice Family Clinic

April 12, 2022

Sam Durant | Health Care for Everyone, 2018

When it began more than 40 years ago, Venice Family Clinic Art Walk & Auction was a fledgling fundraiser for a free clinic in desperate need of support. Today, Venice Art Walk continues to raise vital funds for the Clinic, but has also become a renowned event in the art world and in our community that so many artists have called home.

The event bolsters not only the work of Venice Family Clinic but also that of the artists, providing a platform for emerging artists to have their work purchased by serious collectors and for established artists to back a worthy community asset. It is no wonder then that these artists, many of whom over the years have used the Clinic’s health care services, give to Venice Art Walk with donations of their artwork, and even help recruit other artists to join the cause.
Marryam Moma donated her first artwork to Venice Art Walk last year. She understands what it’s like to need the services that Venice Family Clinic provides.
“Venice Family Clinic’s mission to provide quality primary health care to people in need resonates with me deeply, as I have been in this position as an immigrant of Tanzanian-Nigerian descent in the United States without health insurance,” Moma said. “It gives me so much joy to be able to add value through the art I create, to uplift others with similar backgrounds and from similar circumstances. I believe wholeheartedly in the work that the Clinic does.”

Alicia Piller, whose work examines issues such as colonialism, slavery and capitalism,said that she appreciates the Clinic for its role in the community.
“As a child of a physician, I have a special place in my heart for medical workers, as well as institutions that are doing their part for the community,” she said. “I am so grateful to Venice Family Clinic for providing health care to anyone who needs it.”
Zoe Walsh is transgender and their artwork brings that point of view to why they support the Clinic.

“I admire the Clinic’s intersectional lens and their commitment to taking an integrated approach to understanding their patients,” they said. “That Venice Family Clinic extends quality health care services to communities for whom compassionate health care is often inaccessible is imperative.”

Sam Durant personally benefited from the Clinic’s services. He has been donating artworks to Venice Art Walk since 2018.

“Many years ago when I was a young and very poor artist, I relied on Venice Family Clinic for my health care because I didn’t have health insurance,” he said. “I saw then how many people needed the Clinic, and unfortunately the situation has only gotten worse. Not only is there an emergency with multitudes of unhoused people, but so many of us are housed and working and still struggle to make ends meet. Venice Family Clinic couldn’t be more urgently needed.

“I have been living in Berlin for the last four years, but I still feel very connected to the Clinic and will always be a supporter of its vital work.”