Thursday, March 15, 2012

Austin fundraiser March 22-23

By Suzie Siegel
Artist Mark Goad and Rio’s Brazilian Café are helping the Sarcoma Alliance raise funds and awareness March 22-23.

This month, the cafe is exhibiting art by Goad, who has been a professional artist for more than 30 years. He created work depicting sunflowers and photographed them for cards that will be sold to benefit the Alliance. The cards will sell for $5 apiece or six for $20. They should be up shortly in our store.

I've known Mark since birth. We were born in the same hospital, an hour apart. Having a friend with sarcoma, he says, “has taught me so much about life and how people survive. No one needs to go through this alone.”

“I take recycled Texas King Cotton fiber pulp, steep it in natural dyes and local water," he says, explaining his artwork. "The liquid images are assembled on screens, and transferred onto drying blankets where they dry into sheets of textured paper. The cards are reproductions of sunflowers I made by tearing pieces of the paper into petals.”

I'll sell the sunflower cards and other merchandise March 22-23 at Rio's, 408 N Pleasant Valley Road, in East Austin, close to downtown. There will be a happy hour from 4 to 7 p.m. that Friday, featuring free appetizers, $1 off all beer and wine, and free caipirinhas, Brazil’s national cocktail.

Elias Martins, a native of Rio de Janeiro, is the chef. He and Ben Googins met in Brazil in 1998; they moved to Austin in 2006 and started selling their food at the Downtown Farmers' Market. In 2010, they opened the cafe.

Mark introduced me to Rio's, and the owners have been so enthusiastic about helping the Sarcoma Alliance. To show my support for them, I ordered their yummy cheese breads from Foodzie, and I’m really looking forward to eating my way through the rest of their menu.

I had planned to go to Austin anyway to represent the Alliance at the annual meeting of the Society of Gynecologic Oncology, as I've done since 2006.

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