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Matthew Grogono donates art to charity auction

Yellowknife artist Matthew Grogono donated this work of art, titled Star Words, to a charity auction in Alberta. photo courtesy of Matthew Grogono

Houseboater, businessman and artist Matthew Grogono sold his first major art piece in Lethbridge Alta. in late July at a charity auction for the Ogan School Charity Project in Nigeria.

The piece titled Star Words went up at the auction and sold for $350.

Funds raised at the auction will go toward the reconstruction of a school in Nigeria that partially collapsed, leaving existing classrooms overcrowded.

Fola Soboyejo, organizer with the auction, said Grogono's piece fetched the highest price at auction.

"Mathew Grogono and wife Lynn Taylor have been great friends of Ogan school through this project before the recent art donation and auction," said Soboyejo.

The kite-sized art piece was made from a re-purposed countertop. Inspiration for the size and shape of the piece came to him while re-watching Mary Poppins with his mother, he said.

"The material caught my eye because of the star and space-like quality," said Grogono.

Grogono says strives to reuse materials whenever possible, something he pursues through his work at Yellowknife businesses: Old Town Glassworks and Old Town Bikeworks.

"Some say that the Lord's Prayer is the entire gospel summed up in one poem I thought it would be interesting to juxtapose the vastness of the universe with the gospel."

Grogono noted the Christian theme of the auction and thought his new piece would be a great fit.

"I'm glad I was able to help with a good cause," said Grogono.

The auction for the Ogan school had 64 donated art pieces and raised $3,000.