The second annual ‘An Evening of Art’ auction benefiting the Wisconsin 4-H Foundation raised nearly $15,000 to support Wisconsin 4-H arts and communications programs. The event was hosted by Dr. and Mrs. Ray Cross at the historic Brittingham House in Madison.

“This year’s event was a great success,” said Wisconsin 4-H Foundation Board President and Event Chair, Linda Funk. “This is a great showcase for our 4-H youth, who are incredibly talented and creative, and a great opportunity for the public to support an important part of the 4-H program – and they did just that.”

Artwork created by 4-H youth from around the state, along with selected pieces from professional Wisconsin artists, were auctioned. The youth art was selected through a statewide contest that was held in June that attracted more than 100 entries. Drawings, paintings, mixed-media, pottery and photography projects were highlighted.

“What an experience for Rafferty,” said Jaime Dresden, mother of one of this year’s prize-winning 4-H artists. “She had the opportunity to meet professional potter Frank Breneisen and learn his story. She was delighted to learn he was a 4-H alum. It was a true honor for her to have Dr. and Mrs. Cross, who hosted us, along with the event sponsors, the Crave family, show interest in her work. I’m not sure who left more inspired, the youth or the adults.”

The ultimate purpose of the 4-H arts and communications programs is to provide opportunities for young people to develop the character and life skills they will need to become successful and contributing members of society.

The ‘An Evening of Art’ auction is one way the Wisconsin 4-H Foundation is working to enhance support of the arts and communications programming, including an endowment which permanently provides resources for arts-related programming. Funds generated from the auction will provide resources for 4-H arts and communications programs including visual and performing arts, communications, photography, speech and drama.

The Wisconsin 4-H Arts and Communications programs have a rich history and an exciting future.

4-H youth are encouraged to develop their creative, problem-solving and technical skills through their 4-H experience. Arts and communications programming is one of the largest project areas in Wisconsin 4-H. It provides unprecedented opportunities to explore and develop artistic awareness, creative potential and appreciation of art and the artistic process.

This year’s prize-winning youth artists included:

Best of Show

Thea Collins, Columbia County

“I’m a Little Teapot” winning bid $150

First Prize: Painting

Rochelle Heller, Jackson County

“Coneflower” winning bid $250

Second Prize: Painting

Grace Kling, Jackson County

“Some Pig” winning bid $550

First Prize: Drawing

Grace Schappe, Adams County

“Patriot’s Pledge” winning bid $150

Second Prize: Drawing

Hallie Stalvig, Douglas County

“Sunset” winning bid $150

First Prize: Photography

Annika Esselstrom, Green County

“Lake Sunset” winning bid $125

Second Prize: Photography

Cristina Gray, La Crosse County

“Violin” winning bid $125

First Prize: Other Media

Rafferty Dresen, Adams County

“Beaded Horse” winning bid $500

Second Prize: Other Media

Christian Julius, Outagamie County

“Amazing Grace” winning bid $300

In addition, professional artists donating their work included: Frank Breneisen of Fontana, WI who contributed two glazed pots; Mary Lindemann of Newton, WI who contributed several hand-made necklaces; Eric Treece, Great Lakes Ship Master who contributed aboard his ship, and Connie Glowacki of Rock and Door counties who contributed a collage of her paintings of Door County sunsets.

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