Drawing the Connections Art Auction Fundraiser and Gala

Opening Night: Thursday, June 17, 2021 5:30 – 6:30pm PT / 7:30 – 8:30 pm CT / 8:30 – 9:30pm ET  Breast Cancer Action's Drawing The Connections Logo

Auction: June 17 – 25, 2021 

An art auction and virtual event that will uplift the connections between breast cancer, health, and other social justice issues.

This fundraiser will reflect our core values. BCAction works to achieve health justice for everyone at risk of and living with breast cancer. We view breast cancer through a social justice lens with the understanding that, in order to address and end this disease, we must tackle the root causes of health inequities. These inequities arise from the complex interplay of culture, power, economics, racism, and sexism and result in unacceptable rates of breast cancer incidence, mortality, and survival and have disproportionate impacts on Black and brown folks. Drawing the Connections seeks to uplift BCAction’s work to address this though art.

At our opening night virtual gala and fundraiser on June 17, we will highlight a few of the participating artists whose art submissions best connect with BCAction’s work to achieve health justice for all people at risk of and living with breast cancer. You will also get to hear from our Executive Director, Dr. Krystal Redman, other BCAction staff, and three featured speakers.  

We will also feature one-of-a-kind 8×10 prints, one by nationally-known artist Favianna Rodriguez, as well as a piece designed specifically for BCAction by Lauren Friedlander. Sponsors and VIP ticket holders will receive their choice of one of these prints with their sponsorship package. Additional prints will be available to the general public for $100 during the auction. 

Thank you to the over 30 artists who have donated pieces of art for our week-long auction. BCAction is offering each artist a stipend of 30% of the proceeds generated for each piece, and some artists have even offered to donate that back to the organization. 

Join us by getting your tickets and sponsorships today!

The three artists who donated and commissioned pieces for BCAction's Drawing the Connections

In addition to pieces donated to the auction, the following artists have generously donated or commissioned 8×10 prints specifically for Drawing the Connections.

Favianna Rodriguez (Print Artist and Featured Speaker) 

Favianna Rodriguez is an interdisciplinary artist, cultural strategist, and social justice activist based in Oakland, California. Her art and praxis address migration, gender justice, climate change, racial equity, and sexual freedom. Her practice boldly reshapes the myths, stories, and cultural practices of the present, while healing from the wounds of the past. Favianna’s projects include Ben & Jerry’s Pecan Resist, two large scale public art commissions with the City of San Francisco, a partnership with Joey Soloway to create 5050by2020.com, and an upcoming storytelling initiative at the US Mexico border. Her work serves as a record of her human experiences as a woman of color embracing joy, sexual pleasure and personal transformation through psychedelics as an antidote to the life-long impacts of systemic racism. Her signature mark-making embodies the perspective of a first-generation American Latinx artist with Afro-Latinx roots who grew up in Oakland, California during the birth of hip hop and the crack cocaine epidemic. 

In addition to her expansive studio practice, she is the co-founder and president of The Center for Cultural Power, a national organization igniting change at the intersection of art, culture and social justice. She has been awarded numerous fellowships and accolades for her work. An artist entrepreneur, she has co-founded various institutions, including the EastSide Arts Alliance, a cultural center and affordable housing complex in Oakland, CA, and Presente.org, the largest Latino online organizing community in the US. She is currently working on a short form, web-based series about sex and consent.  Prints of Favianna’s powerful piece, “Survivor Justice II,” will be available for purchase during the auction. She will also be sharing her perspectives on art and social justice and the event via pre-recorded video. 

Sharon Steuer

(BCAction Member) For almost four decades, Sharon Steuer has pioneered the merging of traditional and digital painting, drawing, printmaking, and collage. Her art honors include the national Faber Birren Color Award from Guggenheim curator Clare Bell, a painting award from Judy Chicago, and a Connecticut Arts Commission grant.  

In 2011, Sharon accidentally discovered that she inherited the BRCA1 genetic mutation through her Jewish ancestry. Absent any illness, symptoms, or known family history of such cancers, merely having this defect dramatically increased her ovarian and breast cancer risks. All consulting doctors and genetic counselors advised her to undergo significant prophylactic surgeries, and to participate in ongoing genetic surveillance—always with the caveat that it was only “for her own good.” 

Sharon is also author of books, articles, and video courses on digital art techniques, including the award-winning 14-edition Adobe Illustrator WOW! Book series. She hosts an ongoing “Digital Art Studio” series for online digital art magazine, creativepro.com.  

Lauren Friedlander 

Lauren Friedlander is an award-winning writer and graphic artist based in Brooklyn with a passion for storytelling, both verbal and visual. Lauren created two pieces specifically for Drawing the Connections, prints of which will be available for purchase during the auction. Check out more of her work here: laurenafriedlander.myportfolio.com.

Drawing the Connections' four featured speakers

In addition to Favianna Rodriguez, listed above, our two other featured speakers will be: 

Gaye Hyre

Gaye Hyre is an 11 year survivor of triple negative breast cancer. She is one of the last patients to have to suffer the terror and indignity of losing their health insurance coverage after her diagnosis, just before the ACA took effect. Once she finished a year of rigorous treatment, she founded ArtBra New Haven, a 501c3 charity, which brings together patients, survivors, and their supporters with listed regional artists, in a very unusual form of art therapy, creating works that express the person’s feelings about their experience of breast cancer. The pieces are then auctioned at a live runway show, the proceeds dedicated to paying for treatment for under and uninsured patients in the Greater New Haven area. 

Edith Borax Morrisonwho’s art is featured in Drawing the Connections, was Gaye’s very dear “courtesy Aunt”, and the inspiration for the founding of ArtBra New Haven. Edith was diagnosed with her first recurrence of cancer 11 years ago, and called Gaye in tears, not sure what to do. Gaye said she would help her all she could. Then 2 weeks later, Gaye was diagnosed. Going through their treatments together was a bonding experience like nothing else imaginable. Gaye would call Edith to check on her, and ask if she was in pain. Edith replied, “when I’m in pain, I add a T – I paint.” Gaye knew she had to get that incredible statement out there, so she started ArtBra. 

Caro Novella

Caro Novella is a performing artist, researcher and (health) activist trained in dance, improvisation, community health communication and performance art. Committed to community-health and research-creation, her work materializes in workshops, collaborative events, artistic co-creation laboratories, performances, installations, visual poetry and performative texts. Created in 2011, her performance project oncogrrrls centers cancer and transfeminism. Since 2018, she has been developing cosensing, we are already silkworms, a collaborative project to practice modes of mutual care through multispecies sensory imaginaries. She holds an MA in Communication – Dance and health communication from Ohio University) and PhD in Performance Studies from University of California, Davis with a designated emphasis in Practice as Research and Feminist Theory and Research.

Christy Chan

Christy Chan is an interdisciplinary artist based in Oakland and working primarily in video, installation, performance and oral storytelling. Her work has been included in exhibitions at Kala Art Institute, Southern Exposure, Root Division, SOMarts, the Los Angeles Film Festival, and in storytelling venues such as NPR.  She has been awarded residencies and support from the Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts, Montalvo Arts Center, Project 387, Kala Art Institute, Headlands Center for the Arts and Real Time and Space in Oakland. Chan holds an M.A. in Communication Arts from Virginia Commonwealth University.  She is working on the multimedia storytelling and film project Pen Pals which has been featured on NPR’s Snap Judgement and The New York Times and tells the story of Shelly, an 8-year-old girl who writes idealistic letters to the Ku Klux Klan after the Klan targets her family. Based on real-life events, Pen Pals draws on Chan’s experience growing up in a Southern town with a white nativism movement, an experience that continues to inform her ongoing explorations of race, power, and what it means to be an American. 

Gabby Poccia HeahshotAnd our emcee for the evening will be Gabbi Poccia! – A staple of the San Francisco Bay Area comedy scene, Gabby will bring her unique blend of quirky and bold humor that is both dark and lovable to this event. We are so honored that she’ll be our guide for this powerful and fun occasion. 




Pratap and Chitra Pal


Karen Klein and Ben Golvin
Richard Grosboll
Peggy Huston


Betsy Cotton
Benjamin and Katie Horne
Gail Kaufman
Tracy Kolian
Lee Ann Slinkard and Maria Morris

6 pieces of art surrounding the Drawing the Connections logo.