Fundraiser Pairs Artists, Influencers in the “Chair Affair”

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Furniture Bank to benefit from Pathways to Housing PA event.

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Pathways to Housing PA has scheduled its unique Chair Affair fundraiser and announced its pairings of area artists and influencers.

The annual event, to be held April 25 at the Moore College of Art in Philadelphia, brings together 10 local artists with area cultural and thought leaders, influencers and tastemakers.

Prior to the event, each artist and influencer team discussed what home, furniture, safety and security means to them and what inspires them. Each artist then selected a chair from the Philadelphia Furniture Bank and redesigned it based on the conversation with the influencer. Completed chairs will be sold during a silent auction at the event, which will be emceed by Jennaphr Frederick of WTXF FOX’s Good Day Philadelphia.

The Chair Affair showcases the teamwork and creativity of prominent artists and designers while raising money for the highly respected Pathways to Housing PA’s Philadelphia Furniture Bank. Tickets are $150 and are available on the organization’s website. Sponsorships are available by contacting Valerie Johnson, director of institutional advancement for the nonprofit.Those attending this very special event can also buy raffle tickets for gift certificates and experiences

Pathways to Housing PA’s ambitious mission is empowering people with disabilities to improve their housing stability, achieve better health, and reclaim their lives. The Chair Affair is based on the premise that a house is not a home--rather it’s the things that fill it that make it a home and the feelings that come along with having a safe space and the connections people build in their communities.

Pathways opened the Furniture Bank in 2014 because no child should sleep on the floor, no family should be without a dinner table to share a meal, and everyone should have a place to store clothes and treasured belongings. Pathways partners with more than 40 local service agencies to provide furniture to individuals and families for a small fee. Each participant schedules a time to visit the Furniture Bank and works with a personal shopper to pick out pieces, and delivery service is available for those who need it.

Pathways serves those who have been experiencing homelessness for long periods, sometimes for decades. Clients typically suffer from serious mental illness, long term substance use disorder or are marginalized in other ways. The nonprofit has an astonishing housing retention rate of more than 85 percent with people previously thought to be non-compliant and unable to be housed by traditional systems.

The Chair Affair is Pathways’ largest fundraiser. In its first two years, the Chair Affair raised a combined $72,000. The goal for this year is $50,000.

This year’s artists come from throughout the Tri-State area and work in various media, including paint, textiles, sewing, woodwork, stamping or embellishments.

The artists who redesigned the chairs are:

*Lesley Haas, a paper artist whose work has been shown internationally, from Italy to New York City and at the Smithsonian in Washington, D.C.

*Christian A. Rodriguez, also known as TAMEARTZ, the first graffiti artist to be featured in the Philadelphia Art Museum, whose “dinosaur graffiti” work is currently displayed at the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia

*Sandra Koberlein, an abstract painter in South Jersey, whose paintings show interest in mark-making, pattern and texture

*Dan Scullion, a Philadelphia-based artist who has worked in a wide variety of subject matter and media, including photography

*Jalina Evans, who uses her creative talents for healing, working in acrylic and canvas and using bright colors and the human body in her surrealistic creations

*Denise Fike, an illustrator who works include handmade wall coverings for children’s hospitals; children’s book illustrations; design and and layout for commercial venues and live fashion illustrations for events

*Lawren Alice, a freelance painter who is curator and co-founder of Arch Enemy Arts in Philadelphia

*Laura Lyn Stern, an artist and educator in Philadelphia whose intensive studies in kiln formed glass fuels at vibrant studio practice and who is an office-holder of the Mosaic Society of Philadelphia

*Brujo De La Mancha, a multidisciplinary, self-taught artist born in Mexico City who now lives and creates in Philadelphia

*Mayada Alhomsi, an artist and architect from Iran, who began to paint after confronting war many times and creates images that introduce the beauty and complexity of Iraq to her current home, Philadelphia

*Diane Pieri, a visual artist, including sculpture and murals, with 31 solo exhibitions to her credit and who has been a teaching artist at the Philadelphia Museum of Art for 21 years.

The college is at 1916 Race St., Philadelphia 19103.

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