Everybody knows it's better to give than receive—but if you can receive at the same time? That's the BEST. Now you can do both at the same time with the Mercury Cover Art Charity Auction.

Since the year 2000, the Mercury has been putting the best artwork from the best local, national, and international artists on our covers. And now, for the first time ever, you can have a beautiful, fancy, full-color print of these original works of art—without all the stupid Mercury cover text on them—for insanely low prices. How? By bidding on them in the Mercury Cover Art Charity Auction!

Roughly 11 x 14 inches, each piece of art is a super fancy single-edition archival giclée print—so it's gonna look AWESOME on your wall, or on the wall of somebody you love. The highest bidders in our auction will receive their works of art in plenty of time for Christmas—so go on, give the best gift ever... an amazing piece of art, lovingly donated for this auction by the artists themselves.

AND! Every penny of the proceeds goes to this year's Mercury charity of choice, CHAP (Children's Healing Art Project) providing art supplies and instruction to hospitalized and in-crisis children and their families. Check out the profile of this great organization on this page, and then GIVE! GIVE! GIVE! to the Mercury Cover Art Charity Auction!



Step 1: Take a look at our cover archive here for a sampling of the great cover art we're offering in the Mercury Cover Art Charity Auction. Say to yourself, "Hmm. I am impressed. And I want to help. GIMMEE THAT ART!!"

Step 2: Go here. That will take you to our auction site, where you can view ALL of the original pieces of art in their awesome glory!

Step 3: Find the art piece you'd like to bid on, and click the link below it. This will take you to the item's home on eBay.

Step 4: Bid on the pieces of art you love best (all items have a starting bid of just $15) and check in regularly to make sure you still have the highest bid. Please be generous! It's all for a really great charity!

Bidding starts at 3 pm on Wed, November 28, at portlandmercury.com and ends at 3 pm on Saturday, December 8.

The winners will be notified immediately, and you will have plenty of time to pick up your art!



Meet the Beneficiary of the Mercury Cover Art Charity Auction, CHAP (Children's Healing Art Project) by Alex Zielinski

FOR CHILDREN CONFINED to lengthy stays in a hospital bed or dealing with a physically or mentally constrictive disorder, little is left in their control. From choosing what they eat for dinner (read: hospital-grade mush) to what they wear, most of their daily decisions are made by someone else.

Portland's Children's Healing Art Project, or CHAP, is working to change that by using an effortlessly effective tool: art.

"We provide the supplies, the rest is in their hands," says CHAP Executive Director Roxie McGovern, who originally started out as a volunteer in the program during its earliest days.

CHAP aims to bring the communal medium of art to children (and their families) suffering from disease or disability across the region. Whether it's bringing a tray of art supplies to a child's bedside, or leading group art classes at its Southeast studio, CHAP has found a way to bring out a child's strengths and facilitate family growth through creativity.

"It's hard sometimes to sit down as a family and just talk about what's going on. If the child and family have another project to focus on while they talk, it helps create real conversations," says McGovern. "It's really a beautiful thing to watch."

Currently CHAP has teachers at Doernbecher Children's Hospital, the Harold Schnitzer Diabetes Health Center, the Knight Cancer Institute, and the Shriners Hospital for Children, going door-to-door offering free artistic solace from the stressors of hospitalization and illness, and even setting up art-making stations in surgery waiting rooms.

While most of CHAP's work is hospital outreach, their two-month-old Southeast studio provides space for clientele that aren't bound to a hospital bed. Local families are encouraged to bring children who are facing mental illness, physical disability, chronic illness, or long-term recovery to their cozy studio—no questions asked. CHAP even invites parents of deceased children to use the space.

McGovern says that one father in particular, whose wife is battling cancer, brings his two daughters to the studio to decompress.

"We don't ask what they're dealing with or why they're here, we just let them work it out," she says.

The small studio is anything but gloomy, especially on a rainy November afternoon. Every corner of the workspace and gallery is touched by color, ranging from wild splatter paint to carefully constructed sculptures. Even the program's two-car fleet bears child-created paint jobs.

"Here, kids are in control," says McGovern, nodding to the plethora of art supplies and colorful tables. She says that occasionally, staff has to put parents in "time out" if they're trying to make decisions for their child.

"If a kid wants to paint a brown rainbow, they can paint a brown rainbow," she says. "If a parent tells them it's wrong, we won't allow it."

At the moment, CHAP's lead focus is on expansion. With only two full-time staff and a handful of part-time teachers, the team is often stretched thin. McGovern says reaching out to as many hospitals and families as possible is key in aiding the community—but CHAP's small workforce leads to fewer programs than they'd like.

"Wherever there's a demand, that's where we want to be," says McGovern.

With their move, the studio was gifted a massive printing press for programs. Currently, the press is churning out hand-drawn gift wrap, T-shirts, and cards for the holidays—items that will be sold at CHAP's December-long holiday store alongside the studio (1910 SE 11th).

From offering simple volunteer hours to having companies match funding goals, CHAP thrives with support.

"CHAP's a pretty unique concept, which makes funding tricky," McGovern says, adding that many hospitals don't accept contracted programs like CHAP.

"We aren't therapists... we aren't doctors," McGovern says. "We just give children and their families the tools they need to heal, grow, and learn together."