Raffling a World-Class Picasso for Charity

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September 11, 2013;Guardian


If you have an extra €100 to spare and you are a Picasso fan, perhaps you might want to take a chance on a raffle ticket where the prize is Picasso’s L’Homme au Gibus, or Man with Opera Hat. The painting from the master’s cubist period is worth an estimated $1 million, and the raffle, which hopes to sell 50,000 tickets, will benefit the International Association to Save Tyre.

Péri Cochin, one of the organisers, said this was their strategy to avoid the dread fundraising event and appeal to a more international audience. “You go to those dinners and you are bored, and you don’t know what to say to your neighbour, and you are in a hurry to go home before eleven.”

This strategy involves a bit of risk taking on the part of the organization; the Picasso, which is expected to bring in €5 million was not donated, but bought by the charity.

 The drawing is on the 18th of December. The proceeds will be used to finance arts and cultural projects in the city of Tyre, founded in 2750 BC, where many ancient structures were badly damaged during the Lebanese civil war.

NPQ finds this interesting on a number of levels, not the least of which is the fact that the organization bought the painting to raffle it. Have other organizations tried anything similar?—Ruth McCambridge