On March 22-23, The New Community School transforms its gym into a pop-up art gallery, showcasing the works of both well-known and up-and-coming artists. The 11th annual READ (Raising Educational Awareness for Dyslexia) Art Show & Sale is a fundraiser that presents over 100 local and regional artists all in one space. The North Side school has served fifth- through 12th-grade students with dyslexia and related learning differences since 1974.
This year, the featured artist is Andras Bality, a modern impressionist who received a Pollak Prize from Richmond magazine in 2013.
“As an artist it’s a wonderful opportunity to present work to a large audience who may not otherwise see it,” Bality says.
Other regularly participating artists who exhibit nationally and internationally include Holly Markhoff, Diego Sanchez, Frankie Slaughter, Cynthia Erdahl, Curney Nuffer, Laura Loe, LeeAnne Wright and READ founding artist Susan Dull.
“Each year we get better and better artwork in terms of variety and talent,” says Jennifer Miller, who plans the event and has two sons enrolled in the school.
While many of the artists exhibit on a large scale, some are less well-known, including Virginia Commonwealth University college students and members of The New Community School’s senior class. That diversity of artists means the show has something for every budget.
“Prices range from $50 to $4,000, with an average of just under $300,” Miller says.
The art show includes a ticketed preview event with music from Little Known Legends and food on Friday evening. On Saturday, the sale runs from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., and admission is free.
“The event has a twofold goal,” explains Dan Stackhouse, director of development at The New Community School. “We are raising money for the school while also highlighting local and regional artists who are doing great work in the community.”