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We love to hear how artists are engaging their artwork to meet needs in the world. We believe their stories are worth telling and hope you enjoy hearing about them as well.

Opening Night Proceeds Benefit Surfrider Foundation


20% of Opening Night Sales Donated

by Matt Beard 
Funds Raised: $195
Nonprofit: Surfrider Foundation

AidCurrent artist Matt Beard recently embarked on a three week long road trip down the entire California coast stopping to paint roughly every 50 miles. The resulting 32 paintings made up the show Free Range: California and were shown in his gallery in Arcata for one week only where he offered to donate 20% of any opening night sales to the Surfrider Foundation.  

Artwork by Matt Beard Raises $14,000 for Cancer Research and Treatment

"Scripps and Salsa"

36" x 24"
Acrylic on Canvas
by Matt Beard 
Funds Raised: $14,000
Nonprofit: UCSD's Moore's Cancer Center

AidCurrent artist Matt Beard painted and donated this studio piece to the 2015 Legends of Surfing Invitational & Luau held at the Scripps Pier in La Jolla, CA. The event raises funds each year for UCSD’s Moore’s Cancer Center. This piece was the official event artwork for the year and raised $14,000 in the live auction. Here's what Matt Beard had to say about it:

"Holy moly."

Artwork Auctioned to Support Cancer Research and Treatment


Artist: Wade Koniakowsky
Funds Raised: $3,000
Nonprofit: UCSD's Moore's Cancer Center

Each August, the Luau & Longboard Invitational brings together some of the most respected men and women in surfing history with business leaders, scientists, local politicians and national celebrities to "Surf for a Cure." The mission of the: Luau is to

  1. Raise money for cancer research and care.
  2. Raise cancer awareness.
  3. Have fun!

In 2015, Koniakowsky finished a painting of the local coastline at the VIP party and donated it to the cause bringing in a solid $3000.

Live Art Benefits UCSD’s Moore’s Cancer Center

"Last Rites"

12" x 16"
Acrylic on Canvas
by Matt Beard 
Funds Raised: $1200
Nonprofit: UCSD's Moore's Cancer Center

AidCurrent artist Matt Beard painted this small plein air piece on site during the 22nd Annual Luau & Legends of Surfing Invitational's VIP party held in La Jolla, CA. It was auctioned on site while the paint was still wet. Here's what Matt Beard had to say about it:

"Technically, this would be the 33rd piece in my Free Range series. Odometer maybe at 1525 miles or so. This little one raised $1200 to fight cancer that night (not to be confused with my large painting of Scripps Pier that sold for $14,000 at the main event the next day). Shortly after that I was keeled over in pain and ended up in the ER at Scripps hospital. They couldn’t figure it out and sent me on my way where the stabbing pain came and went for the next 2 weeks. Tests, appointments, all that. Still no answers but feeling better. Reckon 3 weeks of van life and brutal work pace had me neglecting proper nutrition and hydration and I paid the price this time. Anyway, all that is to say I’m not dead yet, and even though this is the last painting I’ve done as of this moment, there will be more. Just a reminder we never know what tomorrow brings. Life is short. Love people. Now.

"I’m beyond stoked to have been part of such an amazing event and grateful to all that work so hard to make it happen each year. I hope to be back, and in better condition to howl at the moon and fight cancer like a pirate with you all next year. Heroes."

Live Art on the Radio Benefits Humboldt Surfrider

"Passing Through V: Airwaves"

40" x 30"
Acrylic on Canvas
by Matt Beard 
Funds Raised: $200
Nonprofit: Humboldt Surfrider

AidCurrent artist Matt Beard painted this piece on live radio. Yes, radio. Well, it was something to do on a Thursday afternoon anyway, and when his friend Mike Dronkers announced he was leaving his post as the midday show host at Humboldt County's free form radio station KHUM, Beard figured it was time to catch him before he left and see what it would be like to paint on live radio. The piece was started and finished in the KHUM studio in Ferndale, CA during the duration of Mike's Midday show. Beer and coffee happened as well as awkward silences and some pretty epic acoustic swoosh rhythm sounds whose audio was expertly captured by Mike with a range of equipment and instruments that had Beard worried he'd be getting a shot of novacane and a root canal before the show was over. The piece was auctioned over the radio with the final bid coming from some friends of Mike who wanted to give this piece to him as a going away gift. If you look close enough, and drink enough coffee and beer, and think about the dentist long enough, you can sort of make out the inner workings of the KHUM studio here complete with multiple monitors, turn tables, sound boards, the window to the outer world of Ferndale, and yes, Mike himself in a blur of activity spinning tunes for Humboldt County and beyond.

Erik Abel: Artist Ambassador for Save the Waves


Artist: Erik Abel
Funds Raised: $1240
Nonprofit: Save the Waves

AidCurrent artist Erik Abel became a Save The Waves Artist Ambassador in 2015. Abel designed the artwork for their annual fundraiser , the 2015 Life is A Wave Event as a donation and released limited edition prints of the event artwork which were sold through the Abel Arts website with 15% of sales benefiting STW. Abel donated a set of matted prints, a paper print, and a print on wood to the Life Is A Wave fundraiser for a 100% donation.

Promotional Event Artwork helps raise funds for Cancer Research and Treatment

Survivor Beach Poster

Artist: Wade Koniakowsky
Funds Raised: $4,000
Nonprofit: UCSD's Moore's Cancer Center

Survivor Beach is a SUP race to raise funds and create awareness about the UCSD John Moores Cancer center’s research and treatment options and to support cancer patients in their struggles with the disease. In 2015 AidCurrent Artist Wade Koniakowsky created the even'ts official promotional image, an original painting and the design for posters, t-shirts, and a variety of other Marketing materials which altogether brought in a conservative estimate of $4000 for the cause. 

Live Art Supporting H2O Trash Patrol


"Pray For Her"

36" x 36"
Acrylic on Canvas
by Matt Beard and Skye Walker
Funds Raised: $600
Nonprofit: H2O Trash Patrol

One of the only collaboration pieces Matt Beard has ever created in a live setting, this piece was created with Skye Walker at the San Diego Surf Film Festival in 2015 to benefit the H2O Trash Patrol, a small group dedicated to keeping our beaches and oceans clean.

Artist Spearheads Youth Art & Environmental Education Program



Artist: Erik Abel
Funds Raised: $1000
Nonprofits: Save the Waves & Sustainable Coastlines HI

Through their nonprofit arm, the Abel Arts Collective partnered with Sustainable Coastlines HI and Pangea Seed to create a youth art and environmental education program. They held an art fundraiser at the Wyland Gallery in Haleiwa where Abel and partner artists donated 100% of sales from original artwork and prints to the project. Total donations were split between partner nonprofits and to cover expenses of the project, raising $500 each for Sustainable Coastlines HI and Pangea Seed.

Live Art Supporting Trinidad School’s Surf and Skate Clubs


"Architecture of Flow"

30"x 40"
Acrylic on Canvas
by Matt Beard
Funds Raised: $180
Nonprofit: Trinidad Elementary School's Surf and Skate Clubs

AidCurrent artist Matt Beard painted this piece at Trinidad School's Surf and Skate Fest to benefit the kids' surf and skate clubs. He began this piece by organizing a revolving group of skateboarding dads to skate past his paint mixing area and grab a brush with a fresh of load of newly mixed paint and skate past the canvas dragging the brush across its surface as one may drag a hand across a wave's face, then complete the loop back to his paint mixing area and hand off the used brush to receive another with a fresh load of paint. The cycle worked well and once a rhythm was established, 20 or 30 passes happened in a flash, with only one minor mishap when a wheel hit a rock and one dad ended up getting a close up view of the school's black top. He brushed it off and continued on, but throngs of kids came rushing in to take their turn with the brush and the whole thing lost its rhythm as quickly as it had been gained. Those first strokes became the Architecture of Flow for this piece.