angel oak“Having read and watched your kickstarter Quench Project presentation a couple of times, I am yet unclear on the percentage of money going to “their” great cause, as opposed to “your” cause? And, what percentage of the sale of your work goes to “them”?”

Thanks for bringing this up. You make an excellent point indeed.

The money will go towards my being able to create visibility and evoke action with the WMI using my art and attention around the exhibition as a vehicle. See below for how the budget is broken down.

The Quench Project
is the kind of collaboration that I believe is a model for the future of arts and also arts entrepreneurship. One of my hopes, if this is successful, is that our efforts will inspire other artists to align their artistry with social causes that will exponentially increase awareness, lead to enlightenment, move people to action and FUNdamentally alter the evolutionary trajectory of all humanity. Yep, it’s a movement and it’s that important! Artists must find ever more creative ways to make it in a world that seems to value hand made things less and less.

As an artist, a father, a businessman and a concerned citizen of this planet, I am always looking for ways to benefit everyone with my talent and lifelong dedication to the arts. I have served as President of Wayne County Council for Arts, History & Humanities, as well as numerous arts organizations, spearheading amazing projects, winning numerous state and federal grants, which have empowered thousands of people. As host of ARTBEAT and as a gallery owner in Detroit I have launched and celebrated numerous art careers. I have donated over $250,000 in portraits and fine art to charities. And, equally important. I have worked extremely hard to become the artist I am today. I think I deserve to feed my family.

Also, to be sure, WMI is receiving two original oil paintings which will help tell their story in a powerful way. They will receive a lot of visibility and will be introduced to hundreds of potential contributors who had not previously heard about the great work they are doing.

We are on this planet to help one another, offering our talents in the service of others. I don’t believe there is a “them” or “us.”  Each of us, from the little boy in Haiti struggling for survival, to the artist trying to use his talents to benefit humanity, all deserve God’s blessings, just for being born into this world. As a Christ follower I believe we are all children of God. Whatever belief or non-belief you may have, we all share in this creation, this planet, and we all deserve the opportunity to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness; I also stand for others to be able to do the same.

Here is a modest breakdown of how the $3,500 will be used: The airfare to and from Haiti ($900). The cost of immunizations and materials in connection with the trip ($250). The cost in time and money to create this meaningful body of work, including art supplies ($350), and the hundreds of man hours away from other more lucrative pursuits (priceless). The cost of framing and presenting the work for exhibition ($1,900). The cost of writing, designing and printing the exhibition catalog ($1,800). The marketing and promotion of the exhibition ($300). The cost of shipping the work to the various venues and fulfilling obligations to backers ($400). These estimated costs, not including my labor of love, which is priceless, come to $6,000.  So I guess that makes me one of my “own” biggest backers.  I’m good with that.

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