Art Donor FAQs

What is The Art Connection?  

The Art Connection is the only non-profit in the Boston metro area that enriches and empowers underserved communities by providing access to original works of visual art. We were founded in 1995 by philanthropist and community leader in the Boston art scene, Fay Chandler to transform spaces, support art engagement, and empower through partnership with artists and social service agencies. Our primary offering is the Art Donation and Placement Program which results in permanent exhibitions of original artwork in social service spaces such as health clinics, homeless shelters, and safe houses. We also have the Artful Seeds Program, which results in art-making workshops as a form of reflection and community or team building.

How many artworks are on permanent exhibition?

In over two decades, we have placed nearly 8,000 artworks in over 400 different agencies in Greater Boston.

How many art donors participate?

Nearly 500 artists and collectors have donated their art through us.

What are the benefits of donating artwork?

Artists and collectors donate art through The Art Connection for a number of reasons, including permanent exhibition of their artwork, increased visibility, marketing, and outreach.

Why do the agencies need art?

Agencies need art for a number of reasons, including to: (1) enrich the lives of program participants; (2) stimulate dialogue, healing, creativity, learning; (3) boost the self-esteem of participants and staff; (4) create a more welcoming environment; and (5) allow them to participate in the collaborative process of choosing their new collection.

Who receives the artwork?

Qualified recipient agencies are public or nonprofit organizations that provide direct service to program participants, have secure areas used regularly by visitors and participants, and lack the funds necessary to purchase art.

What type of art donor am I?

The Art Connection partners with artists and collectors. An artist is defined as submitting artwork done by the artist. A collector is donating artwork made by someone else.

How do I know if I’m eligible to donate artwork? Learn more here

  • You are within a 15-mile radius of downtown Boston
  • You have art donations that are ready to hang. Works that fall under this category have one or more of the following: (1) A Frame, (2) A structure embedded within the work -like a stretched canvas or shadow box, (3) Hardware attached to the work itself (like d-rings, wire, or screw eye hooks) that make it ready to hang on a wall without any additional materials.
  • If a Collector, you agree to a financial contribution equivalent to 15% of the market value of artwork(s) submitted for donation through our program

How do I donate artwork?

You complete an online Application to Donate Artwork, including artwork information and images of your artwork. We review applications on rolling basis and will be in touch with any follow-up questions.

How will the art be stored?

We ask you to store the art at your studio or home until the time of selection.

What if I can’t store my donated art?

We provide temporary storage (up to three years) and you are responsible for delivery or shipping/handling costs. Framed/ready to hang works may be no greater than 18”x 24” and after staff reviews images, may request a limited number (5 or less) of works. You will be asked to sign our Storage Waiver.

When does my artwork get selected?

When artwork is offered for donation, it may take weeks or possibly a year or two before an agency selects it. If after two years the art donation has not been selected, it is removed from our digital portfolio.

What happens when an agency selects my art?

When your artwork is selected we will contact you for approval, share more about the agency, and handle all the paperwork needed to donate the art. We then put together a Confirmation Packet and ask the agency to contact you within 15 days and pickup the art within 30 days. Any art not picked up by the 3 month mark will be removed from placement.

How is the art transported?

The recipient agency is responsible for arranging a convenient time to pick up the art from art donors across Boston within 30 days.

How will my art donation be acknowledged? 

We will thank you at the time when the work is selected. We encourage agencies to acknowledge your donation in writing, invite you to visit the agency, and/or mention your donation in marketing materials. Also, a plaque will be hung next to each artwork listing the name of the art donor and details about the artwork.

What if one of the works I offered for donation is no longer available?

Please let us know as soon as possible if a work is no longer available and we will remove it from our digital portfolio.

Can I claim a tax-deduction on my art donation?

Collectors routinely deduct the market value of a donated artwork. Some artists write off the donated artwork’s cost of materials on their taxes, and others have different arrangements with their tax preparers. Federal law allows artists to at least deduct the cost of materials when they donate their artworks. You are responsible for assessing the value of your art donations and deciding how to record them on your tax return. While we do attempt to verify the charitable status of our recipient agencies, any burden of proof or charitable status for tax related or other purposes is yours as donor to the recipient organization.