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Truro artists paint and decorate old instruments to raise money for local charities

Lori Holman from the Marigold Cultural Centre and David Mingo of Mingo Music Sales show off some of the brightly-painted instruments ready for distribution to local stores. Instruments that include guitars and ukuleles were painted by 15 local artists. Proceeds from the sale of these instruments will be donated to local charities and organizations under the banner of Artists in Harmony.
Lori Holman from the Marigold Cultural Centre and David Mingo of Mingo Music Sales show off some of the brightly-painted instruments ready for distribution to local stores. Instruments that include guitars and ukuleles were painted by 15 local artists. Proceeds from the sale of these instruments will be donated to local charities and organizations under the banner of Artists in Harmony. - Fram Dinshaw

Consider it a marriage of art and the arts.

Instruments that have outlived their usefulness are being repurposed and reimagined, to serve as works of art.

Jen Power recently transformed a guitar into an intricate piece, with delicate circular patterns. It would make an ideal wall or mantel decoration.

Power’s creation is part of an effort by Artists in Harmony to raise money for the Marigold Cultural Centre, and other groups, and she’s one of 15 local artists converting unneeded instruments, from guitars to ukuleles, into art.

“I think it’s incredible that it incorporates the downtown community, businesses, artists and also local non-profits and charities,” said Power. “I love to do unique art projects and support the community.”

The decorated instruments were distributed for display purposes in downtown stores by Lori Holman from the Marigold Cultural Centre and David Mingo of Mingo Music Sales. They will be auctioned through the Artists in Harmony Facebook page from Nov. 5 to 18.

The violins, ukuleles, banjos and guitars incorporate bright patterns. One features an image of a 1960s-style hippie van. Power’s used an eastern-inspired ‘mandala’ design, employing oil-based paint markers to decorate the old guitar.

Such geometric designs are usually circular in nature and the word ‘mandala’ itself means ‘circle’ in Sanskrit, the language of ancient India. Mandalas themselves represent the connection between one’s own inner world and the wider outside reality.

“I probably spent about 14 hours in total working on my design,” said Power.

Groups being supported by the artists include the SPCA, Wayward Cats Society, Third Place Transition House, Slate Youth Centre, Scotia Pool, Cobequid Arts Council, Marigold Cultural Centre and the Colchester East Hants branch of the Canadian Mental Health Association.

A previous Artists in Harmony drive in July raised more than $2,000 for local organizations.

“I think it’s great,” said Holman. “As a not-for-profit, it’s nice to see the community supporting us and the local artists in whatever way they can. I think the project itself brought people together.”

Instruments created through Artists in Harmony go up for auction beginning at 9 a.m., Monday, Nov. 5, and bidding continues until 10 p.m., Sunday, Nov. 18.

People can bid on the Artists in Harmony Facebook page using the comment section to post a bid on the instrument they want. Bids must be separate and cannot be replies to earlier comments.

While there are no minimum bids, Artists in Harmony ask prospective buyers to respect the fact that artists have donated time and talent to help local charities and organizations when making an offer.

Go to https://www.facebook.com/artistsinharmony/

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