This special ART for indigo event aims to raise $20,000 to empower women and girls | HerCanberra

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This special ART for indigo event aims to raise $20,000 to empower women and girls

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There are many sayings about the power of art, and its ability to transform perspective, affect change, and trigger emotion.

After all, a picture is worth a thousand words. So, what’s the value of an artwork that can affect real change to empower disadvantaged girls and women? A local art auction being organised by the indigo foundation is hoping to find out – and raise $20,000 in the process.

Founded in 2001 by women who were disillusioned with the way international development was being approached by governments and international NGOs, the indigo foundation is a small international development organisation that is passionate about the significant change that is possible through community-led development and respectful partnerships with some of the most marginalised communities in the world.

Holding the first ART for indigo event at Rydges on Friday 5 April, they’ll be auctioning and selling art and other items to fundraise for two women-led partnerships – PEKKA NTT in Indonesia and Juventude ba Dezenvolvimentu Násional (JDN – Youth for National Development) in Timor Leste. Anna Vidot, ABC News Canberra, will be MC and host – working the room to ensure everyone has a great night.

According to indigo foundation Chairperson Lyla Rogan, the organisation has always had a strong network in Canberra – often holding gala dinners and annual events – but this year they wanted to try something new to raise money for their important cause.

“ART for indigo is a fundraiser with a difference, in that we have approached well-known artists and galleries to make donations of artworks that we will auction and sell on the night,” she explains.

“We also have valued partners who are donating luxurious retreats and wine for auction. Our guests will have the opportunity to respond to the generosity of these donors by bidding at auction or buying the works, all in the cause of indigo foundation’s community development partners, and women and girls more specifically.”

Focusing on areas like education, health, economic security, and empowerment of women and girls, the indigo foundation currently has seven community partnerships in six countries, each one different in focus, organisation, and context.

In the past 24 months, the foundation provided support to communities facing ongoing humanitarian and economic catastrophes, the fallout from natural disasters, gender-based discrimination and violence, poor access to education, health issues,  and more.

“Our education partnership in Ghazni Province in Afghanistan, initiated in 2003, is supported by the Afghan diaspora in Australia and has assisted over 12,000 students to gain access to education in very remote communities,” says Lyla.

“Our partnerships in Bougainville, Indonesia and Timor Leste are led by women and focus on family and sexual violence, discrimination, and public safety for women and girls.”

The aim of the ART for indigo event is to use the power of art to directly benefit women and girls who face violence, harassment, and discrimination in their cultural and community contexts.

“And the money raised on the night will empower women and girls to become more self-sufficient and confident to lead change – to improve the wellbeing of their families and communities,” says Lyla.

“PEKKA NTT is part of a national network of cooperatives set up to empower and support women-headed households – a huge problem in Indonesia where women have no rights under the law if they divorce, are widowed, or abandoned by their husbands.”

“JDN was formed by Timorese young people in 2014 to address issues they face and increase opportunities for their futures. Young women work with their male peers to challenge and prevent sexual harassment through community education and local action.”

The fabulous Louise Harget, Belle Property will auction several high-value items – including donated art pieces, escapes to Indigo Retreat in Bermagui, a luxurious beach house at Mollymook; and an apartment in Bondi, quality wines and more. Attendees will be treated to a selection of drinks and canapes and will have the opportunity to take away special lucky door prizes and lucky dip wines.

And if that’s not enough, Lyla says that there will also be other artworks for sale, donated by Canberra and Sydney artists, including paintings, photographs, a beautiful indigo textile from Indonesia, and ceramic pots.

“Guests will have the opportunity to hear about the impact our local partners are having on the ground and to feel connected to the generous indigo community in Canberra.”

“We have been blown away by the willingness of these artists to come on board with this special event. And we are very grateful for the support of this event from Beaver Galleries and Grainger Gallery.”

Tickets are $90 and this covers drinks, canapes, and a small donation, Get some friends together and support this event. To buy your tickets visit

If you’re interested and can’t attend, you can always donate the ticket price or another amount through the indigo foundation donations page. All donations are tax-deductible and will support PEKKA NTT and JDN.

For more information about the indigo foundation and the work they do, email Lyla Rogan at or Dianne van Meegen at or visit


What: ART for indigo
Friday 5 April, 6.30 pm – 8.30 pm
Rydges Canberra, 17 Canberra Avenue, Forrest
Tickets + more information:

Images supplied

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