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October 23-25, 2020   Washington, DC HOPE FOR AMERICA HONOR WEEKEND
October 23-25, 2020 Washington, DC HOPE FOR AMERICA HONOR WEEKEND

A COVID-19 HOPE Quilt event sponsored by the Diane & Mike Canney Foundation

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COVID-19 HOPE Quilt A National Coronavirus Memorial
COVID-19 HOPE Quilt A National Coronavirus Memorial

Project funded by the Diane & Mike Canney Foundation

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COVID-19 HOPE Quilt @ Freedom Plaza
COVID-19 HOPE Quilt @ Freedom Plaza

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October 23-25, 2020   Washington, DC HOPE FOR AMERICA HONOR WEEKEND
October 23-25, 2020 Washington, DC HOPE FOR AMERICA HONOR WEEKEND

A COVID-19 HOPE Quilt event sponsored by the Diane & Mike Canney Foundation

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Art of the Matter, Inc.
who we are

Art of the Matter, Inc. is geographically located in the rural and historic community of Purcellville, Virginia. We are committed to supporting the arts using a tiered top-down approach, from national art institutions such as the Smithsonian, to Virginia local and regional organizational art centers and councils. We have supported a wide variety of local musicians and community performance events, and have collaborated with educators ranging from grade school to college level on curriculum art projects.


Since the Foundation’s establishment in 2005, we have donated more than $500,000 to over 100 charities. The majority of projects have focused on the Commonwealth of Virginia and DC metropolitan areas, with the exception of the COVID-19 HOPE Quilt, which has become a national memorial project. Our targeted demographics are underserved and diverse populations in the Commonwealth, as well as DC metropolitan and rural communities.

 
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Our Projects

What We Do: Participation and Inclusion

By partnering with other nonprofits like ours—high-impact and low-overhead—we maximize our ability to reach more individuals and communities. We work collaboratively with local governments and community leaders focused on urban renewal and economic development to encourage community expansion of art projects.
 


We began the COVID-19 HOPE Quilt project in 2020 to reach not only local communities in Virginia and Washington, but also others across the nation. We have focused our efforts on gathering participants using grassroots approaches, including online messaging, word of mouth, and soliciting volunteers at events where the Letters of HOPE have been displayed.
We’ve encouraged people of all demographics to contribute panels to our Quilt display, but most particularly those with family and friends who are frontline workers or who have suffered or died from COVID. The communities most hard-hit during the pandemic have been low-income, rural, and people of color, and thus most of our collaboration has been with those groups.

 

Effect of Covid-19 on Operations
& The Path Forward

Despite our history of success, prospects for increasing the participation and inclusion of underserved communities in artistic and cultural events have worsened, both directly because of the pandemic and indirectly from the pandemic’s downstream economic devastation.The pandemic has forced us to curtail operations and suspend further development of projects. No fewer than 20 artists, a dozen others who manufacture our exhibits, and four employees who manage our social media, communications, and community outreach, have been either let go or had their work suspended. Despite the obstacles and restrictions of the pandemic on our foundation’s operations, we have aggressively stepped up our efforts to provide opportunities for people to find release in such an unprecedented time in the nation.

For our COVID-19 HOPE Quilt project, we used many imaginative ways to reach contributors during a time of isolation. We created COVID-safe home art kits with templates, paints and supplies with self-addressed return envelopes for families and students to use as home projects. We held pop-up art events in DC’s Freedom Plaza and provided supplies & materials at the Lincoln and Jefferson Memorials on the National Mall.

 We held “Paint-a-Panel” events for students of all ages and talents to help them process their emotions on the effects of the pandemic. We collaborated with multiple schools, from grade school to universities, to provide a way for students to express themselves through art. Art teachers at private and public grade schools and Riverside High School created class curriculums for creating fabric and digital art panels so that their students could contribute to the quilt collection. We delivered art supplies to seniors homes in Virginia and Florida to encourage residents to participate. As one of the most vulnerable groups, they were severely affected by the pandemic. With the supplies, we enabled them to create panels honoring medical workers and delivery personnel and memorializing those in their community who were lost to the pandemic.

Using social media and QR codes, we created online galleries that allow art and stories to reach people across the nation, well beyond the geographic locations of contributors. People can easily contribute to the quilt by uploading their panel using our online submission form. People of all ages and walks of life, from age 5 to 95, have been able to participate.

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During the darkest periods of the pandemic, a first set of HOPE letters was displayed at the Reston Hospital, in Reston, Virginia. Covered with over 150 panels of gratitude to the doctors and nurses, it was lit 24 hours a day so workers and patients traveling to and from the hospital could receive encouragement and honor. Del Ray Artisans in Alexandria helped us create another set of HOPE letters, measuring 9.5 feet tall by 30 feet wide. These large white letters were installed on their outdoor fence and gradually covered with messages of hope and inspiration by local professional artists economically affected during the pandemic. The public has been able to purchase original artwork on letters directly from the contributing artists. The exhibit has been on display since December 2020.

contact us

 

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Art of the Matter, Inc.

information@ArtoftheMatterInc.org

15865 Wenner Farm Lane  

Purcellville, VA, 20132-2936

Tel: (703) 725-2495