Stephen Elliott Webb is into painting fine cars.
Covering luxury cars with fine art may be sacrilege to some, but local artist Stephen Elliott Webb hopes to make it a new trend in art philanthropy.
On Sat. May 27 starting at 5 p.m., Webb will paint a new Alfa Romeo Giulia in front of a live audience in the Meeting Street Courtyard of the Grand Bohemian Hotel. The event is free and open to the public, and guests will be invited to enjoy bruschetta from Élevé and Italian wines at a cash bar. An auction to sell the freshly-painted Giulia will begin at 8 p.m., with proceeds benefitting Fisher House Charleston.
The Fisher House, set to open on Wentworth Street in 2018, will house families of veterans being treated at the Ralph H. Johnson VA Hospital. Webb’s father has received treatment there while living in Charleston, and Webb hopes contributing to the Fisher House will make such treatment accessible for more veterans. “Art should always be, if possible, aimed toward giving back,” Webb said.
Webb made his first foray into art cars last year, when he painted the hood of a $330,000 Rolls Royce at Charleston Wine + Food Festival. So when Grand Bohemian Gallery Director Dayna Caldwell reached out to him for a Spoleto-inspired event, his mind went straight to Italian sports cars. He contacted Alfa Romeo USA and everything fell into place as the company offered one of their new Giulia model cars for the auction.
“It’s going to be an exciting challenge to make it look like one of my paintings,” Webb said. A special series of his abstract, expressive works inspired by Italy and the Spoleto Festival will be available for purchase from the Grand Bohemian Gallery during the event. After the auction, the painted Giulia will remain on display until the end of Spoleto, June 11.
Webb’s paintings and prints are available for purchase at LePrince Fine Art on King Street.