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Spotlight on the Haverford College Art Collective

In the wake of the nationwide Black Lives Matter protests, three Haverford students started an art auction to support nonprofits empowering Black voices. Sophia Kaplan ’23, Sophia Mohammed ’23, and Izzy Ray ’23 have recruited nearly 20 participating artists for the Haverford College Art Collective, raising over $2,000 to date. (Editor’s note: the author of this article is among the participants.)

Over 50 pieces of artwork have been donated by students from across the Tri-Co, each of which will eventually be raffled off to a lucky bidder. To buy a raffle ticket, people must make a donation to one of the Collective’s approved organizations. But the clock is ticking: on August 20, a random number generator will match the winners with their artwork.

To learn more about the Art Collective, the Clerk spoke with Kaplan via Zoom.

How did you get funding?

We reached out to CPGC in early- to mid-June about ideas and asked, “What do you think of our plan, recommendations, and feedback?” With regards to the money to cover shipping costs – there are no concrete numbers yet for a complete shipping estimate, but those will likely be funded by the college.

How did you conceive of the idea?

Sophia Mohammed’s friend ran a raffle on one of her pieces and raised a lot of money that way. Sophia was like, “What if we did this within the Haverford community?” We were just texting and I said I would totally be into that. We then began to reach out to artists to see if they would be interested in the idea.

Why do you think the Art Collective is important?

I feel like right now, the nation as a whole is at the precipice of something. Either things are really going to change [or not] – and I really hope they do, because a lot of people in our generation are fighting for that. Going into this project, the big thing was keeping a positive attitude and doing what we could to support a movement that we deeply believe in. It’s difficult to believe that you as an individual can fight against a whole system. We figured that by banding a lot of people together, maybe we would have a better chance of making change.

We wanted to have organizations across a broad range of pursuits, so one for voting rights, legal representation, education, so on and so forth. We honestly started Googling and wanted a focus on the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania area. We really liked what they were doing, and a lot of them weren’t places that were mainstream, so we wanted to support those causes.

Would the Art Collective be something you would continue in the future?

All the new pieces have been up on the website from the beginning of August. We are planning on doing another raffle during the holidays, but the biggest blockade is asking artists to keep donating their work.

How does the auctioning process work?

We will be collecting all the tickets until August 20, keeping track of it in a spreadsheet. On the 20th, each piece will be randomly assigned a number and then people will receive the piece.

Follow the Haverford College Art Collective at their website, on Instagram, and on Facebook.

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