An anonymous donor has handed over a painting estimated to be worth $2,000 to the Cayman Islands Humane Society.
The painting by artist Chris Mann is set to be sold at a silent auction, with bidding opening on Tuesday. The artwork was left at the reception area of the Humane Society two months ago. It would have been sold in the charity’s thrift store for just a few dollars if one of the directors had not recognized the work – and its value.
“It was left in reception anonymously,” said Lesley Walker, one of the Humane Society’s directors. “Somebody spotted that it was a Chris Mann and that it was probably worth a bit of money, so it didn’t go up to the thrift shop, and it was kept out of sight until we decided what to do with it.”
Humane Society directors were trying to figure out the best way to sell the painting when volunteer Linda Rowe came up with an idea to contact the Visual Arts Society. Now the painting is on display at the Peripheral Spaces pop-up gallery in Camana Bay.
Visual Arts Society Marketing Coordinator Mary McCallum said the painting, done in 2003, was inspired by a series Mr. Mann did based on Cuban dance, landscape and music. It measures 42 by 50 inches and is acrylic on canvas.
“It’s quite colorful, very much like a Cubanistic movement piece,” Ms. McCallum said, adding that the painting is in very good shape.
Those interested in the painting will have a couple weeks to visit at the gallery and bid in the silent auction.
Ms. Walker said the bidding will start at $1,200, and she hopes the auction will raise at least $2,000. It costs about $50,000 a month to run the shelter, she said, so money raised by the sale of the painting is sorely needed.
“We need money constantly,” Ms. Walker said. “Our medical bills are always quite high.”
The money raised in the auction could help one dog in particular that is in need of expensive leg surgery, she said.
Ms. Walker said there are currently 50 dogs and 13 kittens up for adoption at the Humane Society.