Pieces to be auctioned off May 4 to aid childhood cancer research

At age 4, local artist Laszlo Kristof was diagnosed with leukemia.

“I woke up one morning and felt that something was wrong,” he said.

Worried about the swollen lymph nodes, his mother, Beti Kristof, took her son to the hospital, where he would spend the next nine months. He celebrated his fifth birthday in a hospital bed.

“Being a kid, I had no idea what was going on,” he said. “People acted like nothing was wrong. They kept their spirits up and mine.”

Family and friends visited, but his mother, also an artist, never left his side. She would stay up with him coloring and painting.

“I had my sick days when I couldn’t move, but the smiles and laughter were the best cures,” said Kristof, now 25.

At the time of Kristof’s diagnosis, the chance of survival for young children was around 70 percent, according to Lainie Strouse, a spokeswoman and event producer for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Thanks in part to the charity’s research, that number has risen to more than 95 percent, she said.

Kristof is one of a dozen artists participating in this year’s Affair of the Art auction to raise money for the Las Vegas chapter of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Artists such as Kristof, Robert Wyland and Michael Godard have lent their talents to painting 5-foot-tall hearts to be auctioned off at a black-tie gala set for 6 p.m. May 4 at the Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health, 888 W. Bonneville Ave.

Kristof’s heart sculpture is on display in Symphony Park until the auction, and he hopes children “will look at it and smile.”

“I have a stake in this, and I’m happy to give back,” Kristof said. “This is just my own perspective on the cause. There are many artists coming together to help out.”

This is the fourth year St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital has put on the event locally. Strouse said the hearts have sold for as much as $25,000. Last year’s auction raised more than $350,000, a mark Strouse said will be surpassed this year.

“The research St. Jude is doing benefits the whole world,” Strouse said. “It may seem like a distant problem to some people. They may not be able to relate. But to see one of these children in front of you, to hear their story, it is clear the very direct impact peoples’ donations have.”

The arts have always been an important part in the charity’s mission, she said.

“Having someone like Laszlo involved is what St. Jude is all about,” she said. “We’re dealing with children facing life-threatening illnesses, so it is important to us to highlight the success of patients and the possibility of a long life.”

After being released from the hospital, Kristof spent the next two years in and out of doctors’ offices. Finally, at age 8, Kristof was told he had beaten leukemia. His mother threw him a party at their home. He said through all of it, his family, friends and art helped him to carry through. It is that positive outlook Kristof wanted to carry over to his work for St. Jude.

“I was thinking about being a child and that pure imagination,” he said of his heart painted in bright colors with rich textures of cactus shapes, peacock feathers and fish scales. “I imagined being that sick kid again and what I would want to see. Bright colors. Happy images.”

Beti Kristof painted a heart for auction the last two years — one of them is on display at St. Rose Dominican Hospital, de Lima campus, in the southwest valley — but now the task is handed down to her son.

Contact Paradise/Downtown View reporter Nolan Lister at nlister@viewnews.com or 702-383-0492.

ad-high_impact_4
Local
Watch Ruthless! at Las Vegas Little Theatre
The musical Ruthless! will be playing at Las Vegas Little Theatre from July 13-29. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Cadaver art and sword swallowing at The Dark Arts Market
Curator Erin Emrie talks about her inspiration for The Dark Arts Market at Cornish Pasty Co. in Las Vegas Tuesday, July 10, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
'NO H8' Campaign comes to Las Vegas
Hundreds of locals participate in the NO H8 campaign founded by Adam Bouska and Jeff Parshley as a response to Proposition 8, a California ban on same-sex marriage. The campaign has since evolved to represent equal treatment for all. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
What to expect at Station Casinos' Fourth of July celebration
Station Casinos' is hosting its annual 4th of July celebration with Fireworks by Grucci. Fireworks scheduled to go off on Wednesday, July 4 around 9 p.m. at Green Valley Ranch Resort, Red Rock Resort, Fiesta Rancho and Texas Station. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Star Wars and Golden Knights mashup at downtown art shop
Star Wars and Vegas Golden Knights fans attend the Boba Fett Golden Knight Paint Class at The Bubblegum Gallery in Las Vegas, Friday, June 29, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Tourists and locals enjoy Independence Day fireworks at Caesars Palace
Hundreds of tourists and locals gaze at the Independence Day fireworks show at Caesars Palace on Saturday, June 30, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Clark County recount votes in commission’s District E primary
Clark County staff begin the recount requested by candidate Marco Hernandez in the democratic primary for the County Commission's District E seat on Tuesday, June 26, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Long-running local hip hop producer wants Vegas rappers to shine
Las Vegas Hip Hop producer and co-owner of Digital Insight Recording Studios Tiger Stylz reflects on 30 years of music production in the city. (Marcus Villagran/Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
"Pawn Stars" fans visit Richard Harrison's memorial at Gold & Silver Pawn
"Pawn Stars" fans from around the world visit the Gold & Silver Pawn Shop in Las Vegas following the passing of Richard "Old Man" Harrison on Monday, June 25, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Construction for new 51s ballpark underway
New home of the Las Vegas 51s is planned to be finished by March 2019 in Summerlin according to team president Don Logan. (Marcus Villagran/Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Underground home was built as Cold War-era hideaway
The underground house at 3970 Spencer Street is one of the valley’s most unusual homes built 26 feet underground in 1978 by Girard “Jerry” B. Henderson, who, planned to survive the end of the world there.
Lip Smacking Foodie Tours takes you where the locals go
Donald Contursi talks about Lip Smacking Foodie Tours, which offers walking tours of restaurants on and off Las Vegas Boulevard with food samples and tidbits of history about the places they visit.
Bump stock manufacturers under fire
The Justice Department said last month that it had started the process to amend federal firearms regulations to clarify that federal law defines bump stocks as machine guns.
Art Bell’s Top 10 Shows
A selection of radio host Art Bell’s most popular shows.
TOP NEWS
News Headlines
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
Circular
You May Like

You May Like