As the global coronavirus pandemic worsens and robs income from local artists with little recourse, the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit is partnering with the City Office of Arts, Culture and Entrepreneurship to help local artists sell their work.

The online initiative, called the Rapid Response Fundraiser for Artists and Creatives, is designed to support artists, creatives, and the institution itself, while all face financial hardships after canceled gigs, shows, exhibits and appearances. It also will help the museum, which like others across the city has had to shut its doors.

“In addition to health concerns, this is a challenging moment for many in our community as we deal with canceled income and revenue streams during uncertain times,” said MOCAD Executive Director Elysia Borowy-Reeder. “MOCAD has always been anchored by a rich spirit of community and mutual generosity, and we believe that continuing communication and exchange are crucial for all of us.”

Local artists interested in selling their work on the MOCAD website, should send an email and a single sample of their work to MOCAD Membership Manager Wayne Northcross at or the ACE Office at Chosen artists may sell a single piece of art on the site. If a piece sells, the museum will split the proceeds 50/50 with the artist. Buyers are responsible for arranging shipping.

“We find that most artworks priced from $1,000 to $5,000 sell quickly,” Northcross said. “This unique time in history is proving the need for interdependent resource-sharing. Although we are not a commercial gallery, we maintain our mission in supporting the creative ecosystem and to make artwork as accessible as possible to the public, including collectors and art-buyers.

Rochelle Riley, the city’s Director of Arts and Culture, lauded MOCAD for thinking of local artists who are struggling because of canceled events, gigs and appearances.

“Many artists are independent contractors, solo workers – musicians, muralists, dancers, poets, and others –  who live 1099 to 1099,” she said, citing tax forms for freelancers. “I spoke with one artist who lost $30,000 in income in a single day because of cancellations. She’s worried about how she’ll make it through the summer.”

The art fundraiser begins today (Friday, March 27). All work will be featured at To view all of the artworks available for sale, CLICK HERE.

Interested artists need to fully fill out MOCAD’s Agreement. Additional information can be found below.
Frequently Asked Questions

1. How should I price my art? 
Artists should price works commensurate with going market rate for their works. Newer or younger artists might not be sure how to price their work. A rough cost calculation might be something like: # of hours worked x hourly wage x cost of materials + 20%

2. Will MOCAD harbor any responsibility for the transaction? 
MOCAD agrees to facilitate the sale and pay the artist and provide recipient/collector information in a timely manner. MOCAD does not take responsibility for lost or damaged art but will request that artists handle shipping paid for by the buyer.

3. How many pieces should I submit?
Each artist may submit only one piece per artist. A dyptich or set of works should be submitted as a single work, and priced as such.

4. How long do I have to ship the works out to the buyer? 
Artists will coordinate shipping directly with the buyer after purchase.


Wayne Northcross, Membership Manager
Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit

Rochelle Riley, Director of Arts and Culture
Office of Arts, Culture and Entrepreneurship

applicable to artists working in these mediums:


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