HALIFAX -- A long-running art show in Halifax has become a major fundraiser for a Halifax-area shelter.

Adsum for Women & Children is an organization that offers a variety of services and supports, predominately to women and children in need of emergency shelter and transitional and long-term housing.

For 13 years, the shelter has partnered with local artists for Adsum’s Mystery Art Show & Sale.

“The Mystery Art event is a culmination of art from all over the province and the Atlantic provinces,” says Sarah Carrier, executive assistant with Adsum for Women & Children.

“It’s art contributed by new emerging and established artists. The event comprises many different types of art; painting, textiles, sculpture. “

This year the event will feature close to 100 pieces of art from 63 different artists, ranging from students to gallery owners. Each piece of art will be sold for $100.

But how does mystery factor into the show?

“The mystery aspect of the art is that you don’t know who the artist is until after you purchase the art,” says Carrier. “And it really just allows people to be drawn toward art that they love as opposed to necessarily following an established artist.”

Sheri Lecker is the executive director with Adsum for Women & Children. She says these types of events are incredibly important to their operation.

“We have to raise about 50 per cent of our operating funds every year,” says Lecker. “I think this year we have to fundraise about $700,000 to $800,000, that’s a lot of money.”

Since its inception, the Mystery Art Show & Sale has raised close to $200,000 for Adsum.  

Lecker says, in addition to funds raised, events like this provide the organization an opportunity to network with others.

“They know that they’re going to something that they enjoy and they have fun, and maybe they go home with a great piece of art,” says Lecker.

“But then maybe they become involved with us in some other way, either as a donor, a supporter or volunteer. Or just by word of mouth, passing on to other people that they support Adsum.”

Adsum’s Mystery Art Show & Sale takes place Thursday, March 12 at 6:30 p.m. at Argyle Fine Art Gallery in Halifax.