The auction will remain open through May 1. Those wishing to view the chairs and place a bid can go to the school. Bids can also be placed by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org or visiting https://www.facebook.com/WestForsythHighSchoolChairsForCharity.
West Forsyth High School students are asking the community to have a seat.
More than a dozen chairs, including rocking chairs and baby seats, are being auctioned off as part of the fine arts department’s Chairs for Charity event.
The chairs have all been hand-painted by students in the National Art Honors Society. Art teacher Stephanie Pickens said they have been working on the project for more than six months.
“We had a lot of trouble getting it going, but now it’s finally coming to fruition, so it’s a good thing,” she said.
Each chair was painted with a theme, including a circus, cherry blossoms and Vincent van Gogh’s “Starry Night.”
In total, the auction features 13 chairs, two shy of what the students had planned. Senior Haley King, who painted a space-themed chair, said the group ran into some unforeseen circumstances.
“We ran into a lot of copyright instances,” she said. “Like there was one chair that was Shel Silverstein’s ‘The Giving Tree.’ We weren’t actually allowed to sell it, so the Shel Silverstein foundation actually bought the chair for $750, so that actually didn’t turn out so bad.
“We had another one that was an Andy Warhol chair. They weren’t going to let us sell that either and actually they demanded the chair was destroyed. But they sent us three Andy Warhol state-of-the-art skateboards instead to put in our auction.”
Pickens said the group lucked out with the Warhol and Silverstein chairs and still expects to raise between $2,000 and $3,000. All proceeds from the auction will go toward Jesse’s House and the Bald Ridge Boys Lodge.
Madison Colson, senior who painted a whimsical floral design, said the minimum bid is $40, but “they’ve been pretty popular,” so she’s hoping the auction will garner a much higher interest.
While the event was designed to raise money for local nonprofits, Colson said it was also a fun activity.
“We had the freedom with what we wanted to paint on the chairs, so it was really cool to see,” Colson said. “Each of the kids and their personalities shone through each of the chairs, which was pretty neat. It was really fun.”
While the artwork is original, the idea is not, said senior Marisa Franz, who painted a fire-engine themed piece.
“We heard it was very successful from the kids at Lambert [High School] and we wanted to be able to give back to the community and do something as a club,” Franz said.
While King plans to study journalism in college, Both Colson and Franz are looking at careers in studio art.
Colson plans to pursue graphic design at Florida State University, while Franz has received a scholarship to attend the University of Michigan and study industrial design.
Projects such as Chairs for Charity help the students practice their craft on their own schedule, Colson said.
“It’s helped us quite a bit I think,” she said. “Because of being able to do things like this, we’ve gotten into some very good art schools.”