Shop for cute, artist-designed caps – and this affordable art fundraiser – to support Melbourne’s Blindside Gallery

Now more than ever, small acts of kindness can have a big impact.

“It’s good to give someone a hat. It’s also nice to call someone, give them a compliment or eat a delicious meal, ”according to award-winning Sydney artist Jason Phu. With other artists Sanja Pahoki (a Melburnian doing “art on existential anxiety [that’s] sometimes funny ‘) and Ukrainian-Australian Stanislava Pinchuk, he made a bespoke illustration for a series of limited edition caps, which are on sale online to support Melbourne’s Blindside Gallery, a non-profit led by artists.

The conception of Phu features a character in the shape of a heart, his arm outstretched with a miniature cap in hand. “I’m giving you this cap because I love you,” he said. Pahoki’s, meanwhile, reads “Meditation and Exercise”, inspired by something a taxi driver once told him. And Pinchuk’s cap is all about the “surreality of this age we are in, ruled by big data”.

In addition to the caps, Blindside has put together the aptly titled B-Side, an online fundraiser featuring an incredible selection of over 100 works of art – starting at $ 150 – from some of the most exciting contemporary artists. from the country. The works will be on sale October 21-28, with all proceeds going to future Blindside art programs.

It is an alarming and familiar story. Over the past two years, the team have been caught in a brutal cycle of planning exhibitions and events, rescheduling, rescheduling, and then canceling – often at extremely short notice and with some work. and materials already invested. As Blindside Artistic Director Martina Copley said in a statement, “It is heartbreaking how the last two years of Covid-19 lockdown in Melbourne [have] impacted the Blindside exhibition program. So many artists and curators have seen their shows closed or rescheduled. ”

The gallery is also facing the prospect of losing its more than 15-year-old artistic home, with the iconic Nicholas Building going up for sale.

But, despite everything, the Blindside team mobilized for this fundraiser. Among the works is Singles (Distortion) # 15 by local artist Dan Moynihan; this is a miniature version of one of his iconic brick-shaped sculptures in mirror-polished steel and neon acrylic. It’s bright, bright and the perfect pep-up for a tired Melburnian.

Another established artist, Kate Rohde, contributed a Rococo-style chandelier in the shape of a sea serpent that appears to spring from choppy waves. Also find a shell-shaped sculpture by Benjamin Woods, a bewitching piece in paraffin wax and oil paint by Kaijern Koo and a geometric tapestry by Jacqueline Stojanovic.

Blindside has set an ambitious fundraising goal of $ 10,000. But getting involved is truly a win-win for any art lover: you will not only get a unique and affordable piece to display in your home, but you will support the community in their quest to keep creating.

The B-Side online fundraiser runs October 21-28. The first batch of caps are sold out, but pre-orders are now open for shipment within two weeks.

Alana Kushnir is the founder of Guest work agency, a curatorial practice and a legal and advisory firm for artists, collectors, commercial galleries and arts organizations.

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