London-based Polish artist and designer Matt Gidaszewski has launched #Portraits_For_Ukraine – uniting artists from around the world – to raise money for humanitarian aid for Ukrainian refugees.
The initiative has been launched by My Design Arsenal (MDA), a platform for designers and artists created by Matt Gidaszewski and Allan Parsons.
It invites artists to put their skills to use by illustrating portraits, with all proceeds passed to Razom charity, a non-profit Ukrainian-American human rights organisation established to support the people of Ukraine.
Matt – who is spearheading the project – says he created the initiative after hearing heart-breaking stories from back home in Poland, where his mother has opened up her house to help Ukrainian refugees forced to flee their war-torn homeland.
Inspired by her support, he hopes the project will enable artists to put their talent to good use to help the millions of people who have fled their homes since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February, many to neighbouring Poland.
“We hear terrifying stories from them about their families, about a brother who they have not spoken to for over a month as he is trapped in Mariupol, loved ones that they had to leave behind, and siblings who tragically died. This was one of the triggers for the Portraits_For_Ukraine project. I wanted to create a project where an artist can have a direct impact by using his or her talent to induce some good.”Matt Gidaszewski
Matt Gidaszewski currently works for start-up company Medics.Academy as Head of Art and Design.
He launched #Portraits_For-Ukraine as a way to provide an outlet through which artists can show their support for the people of Ukraine.
So far £675 has been raised from the campaign, with 25 portraits created by 8 different artists with more artists continuing to join.
The platform enables anyone globally to commission a portrait of themselves or of their pets, with a contributing artist creating a unique portrait in their very own style. The artwork will then be sent to them and also displayed on the #Portraits_For_Ukraine website.
The goal is to get 1000 portraits created to produce a book containing all the artworks, names of all the artists and all the donors. The book will be available to buy with on demand printing and the money will also go to Razom Charity.
People are invited to donate £25 for a portrait of one subject or £50 for a portrait of 2 subjects. All donations can be made through the website. For more information, visit: www.portraitsforukraine.com/order