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Last Saturday night, February 6th, the Santa Monica Art Studios filled with over 800 guests who came ready to makeover their homes with some stunning art — while also supporting a great cause. Heart of Los Angeles (HOLA) was honored to be this year’s beneficiary of the McCall Family Foundation’s annual event that raises funds for a chosen non-profit as well as the artists, with a 60/40% proceed split. Founded in 2001, fresh stART was created to fund art education programs that serve children designated “at-risk.” Fresh stART also helps support the arts in Los Angeles by providing potential collectors with a personal connection to both established and emerging artists. This year, fifteen curators, including HOLA’s Visual Arts Director, Nara Hernandez, carefully selected over 175 established and emerging artists to participate in the one-night exhibition including Anna Sew Hoy, Frohawk Two Feathers, Olga Koumoundouros. Tanya Aguiñiga, Eve Fowler, and Scoli Acosta. The event raised nearly $200,000 for HOLA’s visual arts program.

“We’re immensely grateful for the tremendous support we’ve received over the years, and this year is no exception,” says Cris McCall, fresh stART founder, director and one of the show’s curators. “A big thank you goes out to Toni Collette and her husband, Dave Galafassi, who served as our 2016 Honorary Chairs and generously collected 12 pieces from emerging artists including Mariel Capanna, John Bucklin and Dave McPeters.”

In addition to benefiting HOLA, the evening served as a platform to connect artists with potential collectors. The guest list was given equal attention as the art itself and included young professionals and collectors from the areas of film, TV, art, architecture, design, politics, fashion, and culinary arts. At Saturday’s event. Mayor Eric Garcetti and Councilmember David Ryu served on the Honorary Committee, and Councilmember David Ryu attended the event, along with Hollywood celebrities including Honorary Committee members Walton Goggins and Nadia Conners who purchased photos by Jordan Sullivan and Izumi Tanaka.

Fresh stART has pledged a two year commitment to HOLA and we are already looking forward to next year.  Nara Hernandez describes the event as a shining moment for HOLA’s art department. “We are honored to have been given the opportunity to work with fresh stART. They certainly have empowered us to enrich and inspire the lives of these young HOLA artists


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