Cezanne’s Closet raises money for Union Gallery

Annual art gala pulls in $7,000 through event ticket sales

Guests admire the work on display at the event.
Guests admire the work on display at the event.

This year’s Cezanne’s Closet fundraiser brought students and community members together to support Union Gallery.

Cezanne’s Closet is an art appreciation gala that began in 1994. Held at Ban Righ Hall on Saturday, the event hosted roughly 110 guests and artists this year. The event sold out 55 tickets.

The purpose of Cezanne’s Closet, throughout its 21 years of operation, has been to raise funds for Queen’s student-run Union Gallery, while raising awareness of student artists and art on campus.

Jesse Wardell, BFA ’15, served as a co-chair for Cezanne’s Closet charity gala along with fellow fine art student Francesca Pang, BFA ’15. This is Wardell’s third year volunteering as a committee member for the event.

This year, she was in charge of coordinating the event’s different committees, which included fundraising and advertising. She also coordinated volunteers at the event.

“It was really good,” Wardell said. “It was packed, it moved at a good pace, everyone seemed to be having a fun time.”

With ticket sales and art purchases combined, the event raised a total of $7,000, all to be donated to Union Gallery. Tickets, which were $150 for two guests, included dinner and a piece of artwork donated by fourth-year fine art students.

“The event is the Union Gallery’s biggest fundraiser of the year, and so all the money goes directly back to them and supporting them,” Wardell said.

According to Wardell, the most outstanding accomplishment of this year’s event was the number of students who attended.

“Usually it’s very much professors, it’s a lot more so professionals,” Wardell said. “But this year, we were able to get a lot more students involved, which is what the event is supposed to be about.”

After three years of unsuccessful attempts, 57.1 per cent of students voted in favour of Union Gallery establishing a $4 opt-out fee in the 2014 AMS fall referendum.

Going unfunded for so long, the money raised from Cezanne’s Closet has been vital for sustaining the gallery’s operations.

Wardell said the most important thing about Cezanne’s Closet — aside from fundraising — is the ability for the people who purchase the artworks to be able to interact with the artists who created them.

“It was kind of this interesting back-and-forth of people not only donating work, but purchasing it as well,” she said.

“The goal of the event is trying to get students and the community working together, so it was kind of a nice way to mix those two worlds.”

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