It started out as one day. Last year it was two days. Now in its third year, the T.J. Martell Foundation’s Artworks for the Cure is expanding to three days (Oct. 11-13) at Barker Hangar in Santa Monica, Calif. Highlighting the benefit weekend: the Spirit of Excellence awards dinner.
The Oct. 12 affair will honor Spotify founder/CEO Daniel Ek, Atom Factory founder/CEO Troy Carter, Universal Music Group (UMG) president of global digital business Rob Wells, and Catherine An, founder of An Catering and Tiato restaurant. The headlining performer is singer/songwriter Colbie Caillat, and the MC is Hallmark Channel’s “Home & Family” host Mark Steines (Billboard.biz, Aug. 28).
Artworks for the Cure stems from the vision of West Coast board chairmen Dick and Elsa Gary. “They were looking for something unique to do in the fund-raising space,” says Sean Barth, T.J. Martell Foundation’s director of strategic development in the organization’s West Coast office. “They wanted to do something fun and more accessible to the masses and which also tied in art.”
The festivities begin with a “Meet the Artists” reception ($75 a ticket) on Friday. More than 150 artists from street to studio — painters, sculptors, photographers and mixed media — are represented in the global art collection for auction and/or sale. Among the music artists displaying their work are John Mellencamp, Yoko Ono and Dave Matthews.
Title sponsors are American Airlines and UMG. Additional sponsors include Live Nation, Wasserman Foundation and Microsoft. Artworks for the Cure benefits T.J. Martell Foundation’s funding of cancer research at 12 top U.S. research hospitals. In Los Angeles, the foundation funds pediatric cancer research at Children’s Hospital. To date, the foundation overall has raised more than $250 million.
Honoree Wells jokingly says he’s “become a painful nag. But I’m doing all I can to raise as much money as possible, because the foundation does an incredible volume of amazing work.”