Award-winning West Ashley portrait artist Robert Maniscalco has just launched a Kickstarter campaign in an effort to raise money so he can travel to Haiti along with Water Missions International (WMI). He also plans on creating a series of paintings that will raise awareness for WMI, a Charleston-based non-profit, who have invented a unique water purification system to bringing fresh water to remote areas around the world.
“I will assist in the WMI work to process and bring fresh water to areas devastated by famine and water shortages,” says Maniscalco, who will take photos, make sketches, and interview Haitians surviving under difficult conditions.  “I will gather this written and photographic reference to create an exhibition of 10-15 paintings for a traveling exhibition called The Quench Project, focusing on the impact of WMI’s living water message and world-wide relief efforts,” he says. WMI will provide food and lodging in Haiti for the duration of his trip, which will be for 7-10 days.
“I believe in the power of art and the power of art to transform and to convey information and to inspire people to action,” says Maniscalco. “We’re all struggling with something and my work is about that struggle and how we find creative ways to make it possible to be happy.”
According to Maniscalco, the primary intention of The Quench Project will be to raise awareness of WMI’s mission as well as generate funding for its continued mission in Haiti.  A portion of the proceeds from the sale of work will go to WMI in the form of a donated work for their permanent collection. A larger goal for the project will be to raise awareness of the world water crisis related to a growing population, a disparity of wealth, and the effects of global warming.
“While in Haiti, I will also teach basic drawing classes to kids and adults who might wish to benefit from knowledge and experience in this area, not only as an artist but as an entrepreneur,” says Maniscalco. “My purpose while there is to come away with a full a sense of the experience of the Haitian people and express/respond to that authentically on canvas and in the written word.”
Upon returning from Haiti, Maniscalco will take the next 5-6 months to complete 10 to 15 works of art for The Quench Project traveling exhibition. During this period, he and WMI will work in a coordinated effort to line up exhibition opportunities in Charleston and other areas, expressing the non-profit’s living water mission through art.  WMI will also provide an exhibition and launch event in their facility for invited guests.
Through, Maniscalco has set a goal to raise at least $3,500 for the project before the deadline of Aug. 31. As of earlier this week, he had raised around 1/8 of the amount needed to fund the project. All contributors will receive an inscribed copy of a full-color catalog/booklet with reproductions of the images, along with the stories surrounding each piece and personal responses and impressions from the artist. “Please take a look, contribute and/or share with your friends. There are opportunities to become involved on so many levels,” says Maniscalco. Higher level contributors will also receive other perks, such as choice of one of the original paintings (valued at $1,500-$8,000).
For more information about The Quench Project, visit Robert Maniscalco’s website, You can contribute to the project through and search for
“The Quench Project
in Haiti.”

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