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World's Largest Art Auction for Covid Relief to Close With Speech by Bitcoin Pioneer – Canada NewsWire



Brock Pierce to Speak Live at on June 27 as Global Infections Hit 10 Million

LONDON, June 27, 2020 /CNW/ – Art&Co., the world’s largest online auction for supporting charities addressing the five D’s of the Covid-19 virus:, Death, Disease, Depression, Domestic Violence and Disproportionality for ethnic minorities, will mark its closing today with a speech by crypto-currency pioneer Brock Pierce about philanthropy and art as collectible investments. Fineqia International Inc. (“the Company” or “Fineqia”) (CSE: FNQ) (OTC: FNQQF) (Frankfurt: FNQA) is among Art&Co.’s founding partners.

Pierce is an entrepreneur and venture capitalist with an extensive track record of founding, advising and investing in disruptive businesses. A noted philanthropist, he is also credited for pioneering the market for digital currencies and co-founding Blockchain Capital, the EOS Alliance and Tether.

255 pieces of art are being auctioned to bidders from across the globe by Art&Co. Funds raised are being shared by seven registered charities and 46 artists who have come together in the fight against Covid-19. Worldwide infections are approaching 10 million, with nearly half a million deaths, according to the World Health Organization. The United States, Brazil, Russia, India and the UK top the countries most affected.

“Covid represents a clear, present and global danger,” said Brock Pierce, founder of the Puerto Rico based non-profit Integro Foundation. “There’s no time like the present to fight this danger.”

Pierce will be live online at on Saturday June 27, at 5 PM UK/12 PM NY time. The auction will end at 7 PM UK/2 PM NY time.

“Brock has a knack for spotting early opportunities,” said Bundeep Singh Rangar, Art&Co.’s Founder and Fineqia’s CEO. “He’ll share his picks live on screen, among works from emerging artists in the collection.”

Fund’s raised from InsurAid’s Art&Co. project will go to artists and seven registered charities: ICU Steps (, The Care Workers Charity (, Khalsa Aid International (, Race on the Agenda (ROTA) (, Painting Our World in Silver (, Solace Women’s Aid ( and Za Teb (“For You”) ( Charities have welcomed the Art&Co. initiative by PremFina’s InsurAid unit as contributions have dried up, due to the lockdown.

London-based insurtech firm PremFina’s shareholders include global investors Rakuten Capital, the investment arm of Japan’s Rakuten, the UK’s Draper Esprit Plc, backed by Silicon Valley billionaire Tim Draper, Thomvest Ventures, the venture capital firm of Canada’s Peter Thomson, whose family is known for its namesake Thomson Reuters Corp., Emery Capital, Talis Capital and the company’s founder and CEO.

About Art&Co. (

Art&Co. is the world’s largest online art auction to help with the immediate as well as long-term effects of COVID-19, including illness, mental health and domestic violence.

About Fineqia International Inc. (

Fineqia International Inc. is a listed entity in Canada (CSE: FNQ), the US (OTC: FNQQF) and Europe (Frankfurt: FNQA). Fineqia International outlines the Company’s corporate governance, culture, processes and relations by which the Company and its subsidiaries are controlled, directed and governed. It oversees and ensures the overall success, planning and growth of the Company and all of its subsidiaries and investments, including those propagating blockchain technologies. For more information visit:

About InsurAid (

InsurAid is a PremFina company set up to encourage corporate and personal donations to support those affected by humanitarian disasters, public health, and safety crises. InsurAid focuses on events for which insurance is scarce or unavailable.

About PremFina Ltd (

PremFina Ltd is a UK-based premium finance company that promotes financial inclusion by enabling the payment of insurance premiums via installments. It supplies insurance brokers with funding lines and also enables broker-funded and branded credit agreements via its Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) affiliate IXL PremFina Ltd. With PremFina, brokers receive higher profit, greater autonomy, and the opportunity to increase the lifetime value of their customers as well as cross-sell and up-sell additional products. PremFina’s shareholders include global investors Rakuten Capital, Draper Esprit Plc, Thomvest Ventures, Emery Capital, Rubicon Venture Capital, Talis Capital, and the company’s founder & CEO.

SOURCE Fineqia International Inc.

For further information: For All Press Enquiries: JPR Media Group, Jessica Patterson, [email protected], +44 (0) 7950 977 765

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Métis women hoping to revive live art with 5 temporary outdoor installations across PA – Prince Albert Daily Herald



Local Métis artists Danielle Castle (left), who’s also the acting educator at the Mann Art Gallery, and Leah Dorion (right) are working together on five temporary outdoor art installations throughout July and August. (Jayda Taylor/Daily Herald)

Danielle Castle and Leah Dorion firmly believe they were meant to collaborate. The two Métis artists are the same person at heart: They’re both inspired by the land and dedicate their lives to arts education.

In fact, Dorion sees a younger version of herself in Castle. She remembers, nearly two decades ago, when she was trying to kickstart her art career while raising her son.

The pair is launching their Intergenerational Métis Artist Mentorship Project on Friday. Outside of the Mann Art Gallery from 1 to 3 p.m., weather permitting, they’ll be collaboratively creating a sidewalk chalk mural.

That will be the first of five temporary outdoor art installations across Prince Albert.

“We’ve had so much fun scouting locations, pitching ideas to people that we’re working with,” said Dorion. This includes the Mann Art Gallery and the City of Prince Albert.

“It’s going to go well no matter what because we’ve already—together—learned so much about how to do this public art.”

Castle is the acting educator at the Mann Art Gallery. Last year, the gallery launched a small residency project with Dorion.

Before the COVID-19 pandemic entered Saskatchewan, Dorion hosted workshops there making Métis moss bags and Plains-style Métis ribbon skirts.

“We were looking for ways to extend and do things with Leah at the gallery for her mini residency that we started, and we were just looking at grants and how to do it,” explained Castle.

“Then, with COVID, things changed. Leah was just like, ‘You know what, I want to mentor you,’ and I’m like ‘yes.’”

Dorion will work with Castle on the outdoor installations, teaching her how to plan, produce, install and implement the art.

The project is inspired by Dorion’s children’s book The Giving Tree: A Retelling of a Traditional Métis Story. The book highlights the culture’s core values, including strength, kindness, courage, balance and love.

Nowadays, they said, live public art is scarce.

One of Dorion’s favourite memories is setting up her easel at Batoche National Historic Park. Children who were there on a field trip were constantly checking in, excited to see what her next brush stroke would bring.

“When people see me working publicly, making art, they’re so inspired and so curious and so excited. We don’t watch people live, making things as much as we used to.”

Castle agreed, saying art isn’t always about seeing your finished work on display.

“It’s the process, not your final product,” she said. “It’s so important. That’s where you’re getting the therapy and the expression.”

“I think the public will just come to the spaces and just feel good about the art being in the public locations. It will really elevate the city’s story and the city’s visual arts,” added Dorion about the temporary installations.

The Intergenerational Métis Artist Mentorship Project is funded by the Aboriginal Arts and Culture Leadership Grant from SaskCulture and the Community Initiatives Fund.

Castle and Dorion will be working on each of the five art installations in accessible locations for the public to come watch and ask questions. They’ll be ensuring that no more than 30 people are gathered at one time, and that everyone is physically distanced to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

They will be working on separate projects on the Friday of every week, for the next five weeks.

However, they may have to move the events to the weekend depending on the weather. The Mann Art Gallery will update the public on its social media platforms.

“To work with younger artists pushes a person who’s been practicing art for so long to different directions,” emphasized Dorion.

“It’s honestly such a perfect time in my life,” said Castle about the collaboration.

“The universe made it happen.”


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Coronavirus: Vernon Public Art Gallery moves fundraiser online –



Staff at the Vernon Public Art Gallery have been hard at work to move their biggest fundraiser of the year online.

The 34th annual Midsummer’s Eve of the Arts, a garden party that has been adapted to an online art auction and night of entertainment made viewer-friendly to ticketholders from their homes, where they can enjoy live music and a little friendly competition.

Read more:
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“It’s such an important event not only for our community but for the operations of the gallery,” said Dauna Kennedy, Vernon Public Art Gallery executive director.

“In order to maintain the type of work we do from the gallery we look at raising $80,000 to $90,000 between fundraising and Midsummer’s Eve of the Arts is our big fundraiser of the year.”

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The event normally raises approximately $60,000 for the gallery. All money is raised through ticket sales and a live auction.

Read more:
Coronavirus: Vernon Secondary School’s grad street art is back after nearly 40 years

“Culture is one of the foundational building blocks [of our community] without culture you don’t have community,” said Andrew Powell, Vernon Public Art Gallery president.

“It’s a great opportunity for the gallery and I think there’s a lot of artists that like to use it as an opportunity to showcase themselves.”

The art that is available on auction can be viewed at the Vernon Public Art Gallery. To join in on the festivities on July 15, visit their website at 

Zoos and Aquariums fundraiser

Zoos and Aquariums fundraiser

© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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Video brings art exhibit to life, raises funds for Lethbridge Soup Kitchen –



Art, culture and community; that’s what a group of Alberta creators are trying to promote with their latest venture, a video highlighting a local artist after his exhibit was cut short due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It was heartbreaking,” said John Savill, owner of the Trianon Gallery in Lethbridge. “We had an opening, but then immediately after, COVID[-19] started and no one was seeing the show.”

The novel coronavirus has imposed a number of restrictions on Albertans, including artists trying to showcase their work. One of those artists is Robert Bechtel, who has roughly 200 of his paintings currently on display at the Trianon Gallery.

Bechtel is a local artist who attended the University of Lethbridge and has a studio near the city.

The Trianon Gallery and its latest exhibit by Bechtel can currently be viewed by appointment-only because of the pandemic. The limited access sparked an idea among some local creative minds to bring the exhibit to the masses.

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READ MORE: ‘The show cannot go on’: Canada’s arts scene takes hit from COVID-19 

Nick Bohle, a producer with HatChap Productions Inc., and Savill put their heads together and decided to make a video highlighting the artist’s work so everyone can enjoy the exhibit.

“A chance meeting with Nick Bohle led to a conversation that led to a video and then a concept of a sale that we would donate back half the profits of the sale [of the art],” Savill said.

The Lethbridge Soup Kitchen has been selected to receive 50 per cent of the profits from the sale.

“It’s local, it’s very direct, it feeds people that need help and has been operating a long time and is a wonderful organization,” Savill said.

“I think it’s always good to reach out to the community, especially in these trying times, and to help the most vulnerable people in our society,” Bechtel says in the video.

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“Art is going to reach out, be more than just painting — it’s going to reach out to the community.”

The joint effort proves that even during a pandemic, passion for art can go beyond the canvas and touch those in the community, even if you can’t see it in person.

© 2020 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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