OpenDoors Asheville Announces Art Affair 2023

A person holding up a sign to bid on a piece of art.
OpenDoors Asheville

OpenDoors Asheville is excited to announce that its largest annual fundraiser, the Art Affair, will be held on Saturday, February 25, 2023, at The Venue in downtown Asheville.

The 13th annual Art Affair celebrates students while raising awareness and critical funds to eliminate the race-based opportunity and achievement gaps in the Asheville community.

Proceeds directly support OpenDoors students moving to and through college by providing increased access to education, enrichment, and other critical resources. The Art Affair is one of Asheville’s most anticipated fundraisers, attracting hundreds of passionate donors every year with its exceptional art auction.

Thanks to generosity of donors, supporters, artists, and local businesses, last year’s Art Affair raised a record-breaking $300,000 for OpenDoors Asheville, which led to:

  • 48% more students on the OpenDoors roster
  • 47 students attending summer camp
  • 600+ hours of one-on-one tutoring
  • And so much more!

This year’s theme is Kaleidoscope: Beauty Found. “We owe it to our community and to all of our children to support and celebrate the potential within each child, bringing talented young people, who often get overlooked, forward into full view so they can lead and work wonders,” said OpenDoors Asheville Executive Director Jen Ramming.

AVL Rise Education & Arts Director David Kennedy is working with OpenDoors students to curate a creative arts experience and presentation for Art Affair incorporating a short film, a music video, and more. “Building community and cultivating our students’ cultural capital are two important intended outcomes within our AVL Rise literacy and mentorship program, and it has been beautiful to witness the various student relationships that have blossomed as a result,” says Kennedy.

Other event highlights include:

  • Live and mobile auctions featuring extraordinary artwork and experiences donated by area artists and supporters
  • Annual “To & Through” scholarship and Laureate of the Year awards
  • Food and signature drinks from WNC’s top chefs and mixologists
  • Live entertainment by top-notch regional musicians and DJs

“As we enter our 13th year of offering Asheville our beloved Art Affair, we feel like we’re just getting started. OpenDoors’ depth and strength is because of the tenacious and creative students and families whom we serve,” says Ramming. “We firmly believe that equitable access to education and opportunity are the anecdotes to generational poverty, and so our committed volunteers, generous sponsors, and brilliant artists work hard to bring WNC an extraordinary evening filled with abundance and hope — raising money and creating lasting change for local students.”

Individual tickets are $150 and go on sale January 21. Visit OpenDoorsAsheville.org for tickets, updates on artists, experiences, auction items, live entertainment, and more! To learn about sponsorship opportunities, please contact Development Director Dosty Quarrier at [email protected].