Posted by: XL Results Foundation | February 13, 2008

Bali Contemporary Art

XL Life Members Susan Petrik and Lesley MacKenzie have a love for Bali and the Balinese people, and through an innovative idea have found a way to raise money and support the poor of the island.

Lesley and Susan at the launch of Bali Contemporay Art on the Gold Coast

Susan Petrik and Lesley MacKenzie, both XL Life Members from the Gold Coast, Australia, have formed

Bali Contemporary Art, which is an art gallery with a twist. The main focus of the website is to bring the work of emerging Balinese contemporary artists to the world via their online gallery. The ‘twist’ comes from the owners: putting their love of Balinese modern art back into Bali by buying artwork only from artists’ co-operatives (which benefits all the artists there), and by donating 10 percent to a foundation in Bali which, among other projects, helps children go back to school. Assistance is given to families living on or below the poverty line, which is around $14 per month.

The Bombings Take their Toll

Having visited Bali several times as XL Life Members, Susan and Lesley could see that Bali was still suffering from the bombings which contributed to the downturn in its economy. They decided that they were in a good position to help and that by starting a business that ‘gave back’, they could raise awareness globally of the plight of many of the Balinese people.

They knew about the great work of YKIP (Yayasan Kemanusiaan Ibu Pertiwi — Humanitarian Foundation for Mother Earth) whose mission is to improve the lives of the needy in Bali as a tribute to those who were killed, injured or lost their livelihood as a consequence of the terrorist attack of October 12th, 2002, and they approached them about forming an alliance. The artists and the YKIP foundation that Bali Contemporary Art supports will benefit from the sale of paintings and items such as calendars and cards, all designed around abstract art. The website went ‘live’ at the end of October and the web address is www.balicontemporaryart.com.

A Calendar by Children

When Lesley was thinking about creating a calendar for the new business, she decided that a calendar of children’s art would be a good way to raise funds for YKIP, and feed her creative soul.

She contacted YKIP CEO, Rucina Ballinger, and told her about her idea and how she would like to have a children’s painting competition, with the winning artwork to be put into a calendar. Rucina agreed that it was a great idea. One hundred and thirty children signed up, and they had a great day in September drawing, dancing and playing games.
The three judges — two top women Balinese artists and Rucina Ballinger — picked 19 winners. Their works are posted on the YKIP website. From those, Lesley chose the 12 that she thought best fitted the calendar, and put all 19 winners in the back pages. Initially,1000 were printed along with bookmarks. The calendar costs AUD $16.50 plus postage and the bookmark is AUD $1.00. Proceeds will go to YKIP.

Grow the Idea

Lesley says she would like to grow this idea into a business helping children around the world. “Everyone thinks the problem of poverty is so big that they can’t help, so they do nothing. If everyone helps, even a little, then a lot can happen. It is a well-known fact that education is the key to getting out of poverty — and if my calendar helps children, even in a small way, I will have made a difference,” she states.

Orders can be placed by email to
lesleym@resultsinsight.org or by phone at +61423683215 or Lesley@balicontemporaryart.com
The YKIP website is www.ykip.org

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