Call it a virtual upgrade. Saratoga Springs nonprofit Beyond My Battle (BMB), which last year was forced to bring its annual Art with Heart & Hope fundraiser virtual due to the pandemic, will be hosting 2021’s in person at the Universal Preservation Hall on October 28.
The nonprofit, which provides individuals suffering from chronic illnesses and their families a support system and educational resources, has been hosting its Art with Heart & Hope for the past three years. It serves as a way for Beyond My Battle community members to display works of art, along with written statements, that represent how the art helped them move “beyond” their personal “battle” with an illness or disability.
“We started the event because we wanted to have a touchpoint to our local community, whether it was people who live with illnesses and disabilities in the Capital Region, or our local donors and volunteers,” says Martel Catalano, BMB’s co-founder and executive director. “The purpose of it being an art show was that we started to observe, from the very beginning of starting this organization, that a lot of our community members—patients and caregivers—use some kind of art form to soothe their stress, anxiety and depression,” she says. “It was a common thread.”
The art show will be a “pop-up,” taking place just the single night, in UPH’s community room on the first floor of the venue. But it will be anything but small potatoes: This year’s show will feature between 40-45 pieces of artwork from community members—along with those personal stories. “The stories that accompany them are so, so powerful,” says Catalano. “We like to call it a ‘storytelling exhibition,’ because that is just as important as the piece itself.”
The event, which will feature food, drink, live music and some raffles, will take place from 5:30-8:30pm on October 28, and tickets cost $48 online or $50 at the door (pick them up here). All proceeds benefit BMB.