Local artists donate work for NSF fundraiser
Art and athletes, as opposed to general stereotypes, go hand in hand.
"Most artists and athletes have a common focus on energy, they each get into the zone," said Bambi Knight, professional sky diver and owner of the Park City jewelry store, Designs by Knight. "When you look at top athletes or top artists they’re able to focus part of their energies in a way that works for them."
The combination will come to a head next week in the National Sports Foundation’s (NSF) second annual "Arts for Athletes" fundraiser at the Park Meadows Country Club. Artwork from local and renowned artists will be auctioned off Friday, July 28 to help the funding for athletes’ training.
Knight, a member of the all-women’s skydiving demonstration team, The Misty Blues, has made over 3,000 jumps in 20 years. She has accomplished six world records, one of them being a jump with 151 women to raise money for breast cancer awareness. She understands the financial need of athletes and will donate some of her jewelry to the event.
"I know what it takes to raise funds to help out athletes. I donated a pair of 18 karat platinum, gold earrings; they have carved little paths called "Paths of life" because life’s paths are never straight. I donated one and they are going to auction off one," Knight said.
Knight commends the NSF for their work in the auction. NSF will split proceeds of some of the items 50-50 with the artist.
"That’s a really nice thing to do for artists. Its’ really a win-win for everyone," Knight said. "I think I’m blessed that I have plenty and I can help out others. If I can’t get them my time I can help out in other ways. A lot of these athletes have to earn a lot of money to stay in these programs."
A new artist to this year’s event is 25-year-old Joy McManaman.
"She’s new to this year, but she’s a young, very talented artist. She’s very good." said Linda Mackay, the president of the NSF.
McManaman splits her time living in Park City and Washington, D.C. She is featured in galleries in both areas. She specializes in landscape artwork through the medium of realistic and acrylic paints.
"I’m really interested in creating a peaceful mood that’s often hard to catch in our everyday lives. I often find this in landscapes," McManaman said. "I especially love coming to paint in Utah during the winter and summer for the spectacular scenery.
"A winter ski trip or a summer mountain hike is my recipe for dissolving worry. These places have become the setting for my most recent paintings. I hope to prolong their effect beyond a temporary moment. Each painting is illuminated through vivid color and a realistic style, and done with acrylic paint on canvas."
She will feature two paintings of Alta in the fundraiser. They are giclee prints. Giclee is a French word for sprayed ink.
"I take it to a print shop and they have heavy-duty printers, roland printers, state-of-the-art printers. Both prints are of Alta and one is a big line of skiers ‘Into the High Life’ hiking up to Devil’s Castle. The other one is also a landscape of big, tall evergreen trees called, "Standing Among the Greats."
Alta has a special place in the heart of McManaman.
"My brother has been taking my sisters and I to Alta for annual ski trips for the past eight years," McManaman said. "Many of my paintings are of Alta, because of its unique charm, as well as the nostalgia of sharing face-plants with my siblings. ‘Into the High Life’ depicts an unusually large procession of skiers hiking up to Devil’s Castle at Alta. What a sight it was to come across this multitude of eager powder hounds while riding up the Sugarloaf lift. I knew instantly this was a spectacle worthy of a painting. I hoped to convey the yearning we all have to touch perfection and the effort it takes to get there."
Erik Schlopy, a slalom skier on the U.S. Ski team, is donating photographs for the second year in the event. He travels the world and has made a hobby into photographing unique settings he has seen. Some of his photos are seen in local galleries.
"I kind of have gotten a knack for it," Schlopy said. "Anytime anyone is doing a local fundraiser I give them a shot, if they can raise a couple hundred bucks, it gives something."
As of Monday, Schlopy hadn’t chosen his work.
"I’ve got about 12-15 pictures that are studio quality that I sell to some of the galleries in town, I’ll choose between those."
The National Sports Foundation’s second annual "Arts for Athletes" fundraiser will take place Friday, July 28 at the Park Meadows Country Club. For more information, call 901-9675.
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