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Barbara Frohmader and Susan Hanning, artists at the Red House Studios and Gallery, are contributing a portion of sales to local schools during a silent auction of four of their works.

Through the end of June, prospective buyers can submit bids at the artists' studio, Studio 13, a light-filled room tucked behind the stairs on Red House's  second floor.

Filled with the bright colors the artists work with in oil, acrylic and watercolor, the room faces a lovely dogwood tree and the Monte Vista Hotel. It's clear that  Frohmader and Hanning are having a good time creating their artwork. Everything on the walls mirrors the excitement the painters have for their subject matter. Their work is inspired by their travels and by the beauty that surrounds residents of Western North Carolina.

The highest bid wins the art. Hanning will donate part of her sale to the Black Mountain Montessori School, where her daughter is director. Half of Frohmader's  proceeds will go to Art Space Charter School. The gallery, at 310 W. State St., Black Mountain, is closed on Mondays.

Hanning, who moved from Wisconsin six years ago and has been involved in the Red House Studios and Gallery since then, considers painting to be "my love," she said. "I render flowers and landscapes in a representational manner using oil and acrylic paint. Poppies are a particular favorite." Hanning coordinates the quarterly art exhibits at the Monte Vista Hotel for the Swannanoa Valley Fine Arts League.

Frohmader, a resident of Swannanoa, was a member of The River Arts District in Asheville for five years. "There is so much wonderful creative expression everywhere," she said. "Art lovers and buyers have unlimited choices... I see it not as artists competing with each other, but rather thriving in a creative atmosphere that is unique to this area."

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