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Charlotte Artist Pays It Forward With Arts For Life

April 10, 2023 | By Snee Howard

Elijah Kell has been creating art for himself for a long time, knowing how meaningful creativity and making has been for him since a very young age. And as his skill and portfolio has grown, he continues to create art for others – most recently, in support of Arts For Life. At a recent celebration of the formal launch of his own art business, Elijah generously took the opportunity to raise both money and awareness for Arts For Life.

Laura Funderburg, one of our former Board Chairs and a current AFL volunteer, joined in the celebration to speak about Arts For Life’s mission and Elijah’s support. “What a wonderful evening – for Eli and for Arts For Life! It was an honor to be there… The former deputy director of The Mint, Steve Musgrove, calls him a genius. And I’m most impressed with his heart.”

Elijah made his first glass piece when he was ten years old, and now he’s making glass pieces in support of Arts For Life—including the piece that you see here.

As a part of his statement on giving back, Elijah shares, “For me, exposure to art lifted me up and forged a new path. It was the generosity and encouragement of a teacher who helped me find joy through art lessons that eventually led me to find my passion for glass and discover my purpose as an artist. For others, their struggles might be different and their light may come through another source, but no matter what it is, a brighter outlook often emerges thanks to the kindness of an individual, the help of a community, or the selfless work of an organization.”

Arts For Life is grateful to have such wonderful partners in our communities, especially those who know firsthand the importance and impact of creativity on children and young people.