Upstairs Artspace to hold 100×100 annual holiday auction

Published 1:05 pm Monday, December 5, 2022

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One of the most exciting, meaningful, and personal gifts one can give and receive at Christmas is a work of art. Whether the work is by someone you know and admire or by an artist you’ve yet to discover, it is always appreciated by the giver and receiver.

With that in mind, Upstairs Artspace has brought back its popular annual 100×100 and 50×50 fundraiser shows, just in time for Christmas. Featuring pieces by local artists — plus a few not-so-local — ranging from professionals to elementary school art students, the exhibits will showcase an extraordinary range of mediums, subject matter, and genres.  

The 100×100 show, where all pieces are 12 inches by 12 inches, kicks off with an opening reception on Friday, Dec. 9, at 6 p.m. All pieces in this silent auction show will start with a $100 minimum bid.

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The 50×50 show, featuring 10-inch by 10-inch creations by aspiring Polk County art students, will have its family-friendly opening reception on Saturday, Dec. 10, 6-8 p.m. All pieces in this show will start with a $50 minimum bid.

All art will be on display in the gallery Dec. 9-18, Tuesday-Saturday, noon-5 p.m., and silent bids will be taken throughout the exhibition. Final bids will be taken at the closing reception Sunday, Dec. 18, 6-8 p.m.

“I just want to thank the artists for supporting us,” President of the Board of Directors Patti Trobaugh said. “We have received so many wonderful pieces that it warms my heart. It tells me they care about Upstairs Artspace. 100×100 has been a community favorite for many years.”

 The artists’ names will not be listed on their displayed work, which makes for excitement and speculation. 

“In-the-know art lovers will instantly recognize some of the pieces,” Trobaugh said. “However, some will surprise you. I know several pieces are by very renowned artists. To get one of those will make someone’s Christmas very merry.  But you don’t know whose art you have bought until after the bidding closes.”

This December the fundraiser is especially important, as the gallery was closed for a year because of a flood that caused nearly $200,000 in damage to the floors, walls, kitchen, restrooms, and storage. Having to close because of the pandemic was a double whammy, Trobaugh added. But Upstairs Artspace is back, thanks to the Polk County Community Foundation and patrons.

“When you reopen after being shut down for a year, every day is a challenge. If you are looking for great art to give as Christmas presents, come to this exhibit. Not only will you get world-class art at bargain prices, but you’ll help sustain the gallery,” Trobaugh said.

“We have art from aspiring art students to seasoned professionals,” Gallery Manager Steve Wong said. “These exhibits are a wonderful opportunity for parents to buy their child’s art to give to grandparents. And, of course, 100×100 is an opportunity to contribute to the success of one of the finest contemporary non-profit art galleries in the WNC region.”


Submitted by Steve Wong