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Nectar hosts benefit for Make-A-Wish

THURSDAY, FEB. 2, 2012

Art show exhibits hope, strength, joy

Through the month of February, seven artists will be exhibiting work that encompasses hope, strength and joy in an effort to raise awareness about the Make-A-Wish Foundation and the work it does to help local children at a time when their days are challenging because of treatments and illness.

Leslie Woodfill, the wish manager at Make-A-Wish Foundation of Alaska and Washington, arranged the show at Nectar Tasting Room, 120 N. Stevens St. The display kicks off with a reception from 5 to 10 p.m. on Friday that includes live music by local singer/songwriter Karrie O’Neill.

“Hope, strength and joy are three emotions that are the heart of the mission of the Make-A-Wish Foundation and each artist chose the expression that best fits the work that they offered for the show,” she said. What doesn’t sell in Spokane will be brought to a gala fundraising event in Seattle in March.

Woodfill, also a photographer, is donating a photo that, to her, represents joy. Other photographers include Crystal Toreson, whose work elicits strength, and Mark Anthony, who is donating a photo of a young boy whose wish has always been to be a wheat farmer.

“Taking his photo really touched my heart,” Anthony said. “He and his family were flown from Norway and brought to a farm in Tekoa, Wash.” The boy couldn’t walk but he sat proudly on a wheat combine.

Painters involved in the exhibit are Linda Christine, Brenden Genther, Janice Ashe and Breanne Lamoureaux.

“I have contact with most of the artists in my personal life and I asked them if they would participate,” Woodfill said. “I met Linda at an art show and I asked her to join.”

Woodfill felt that Christine’s work was consistent with the theme of the exhibit. She is donating a large mixed media painting from her collection called “Ascending Journey.”

The other painters created pieces specifically for Make-A-Wish; both Genther and Ashe chose different perspectives of a sunrise illustrating hope and Lamoureaux relays strength in a tree with figurative elements. All of the artists see this as a way of giving back and a way to help wishes come true.

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