Paintings with a Purpose

Moni's kids, Daggi Wallace, Painting of Children

Group Pic of Moni's Kids with portraits by Daggi Wallace ( in back row)

Today I want to shine a light on my friend Daggi Wallace and the beautiful work she is doing, literally and figuratively.  Daggi is an incredibly talented pastel portrait artist.  She has combined her talent and her love and concern for children to make a difference in the lives of the children in Port-au-Prince through her non- profit “Moni’s Kids”.  But it’s the time she gives, not only to go there and deliver much needed books and supplies, but also to create these beautiful portraits of the children that live there, that let’s them know someone cares.  I’m a huge admirer of hers and after you read about what she is doing, you will be too.

Daggi Wallace, Moni's kids, Portrait artist, Children's portratis

Daggi Wallace, portrait artist

Daggi Wallace, paintings of children, Moni's Kids

Portrait of Vanessa by Daggi Wallace

Here’s the scoop about Moni’s Kids from Daggi:
  Moni’s Kids combines art appreciation with charitable giving and offers a unique way to support children in need with a voice in their life.
Painting portraits of children in need, I use all proceeds from the sale of these portraits to set up libraries in the orphanages where the children live and meet other needs of the children portrayed, such as scholarships and school supplies.

Daggi Wallace, Moni's Kids

Daggi and her daughter Sam sorting 400 lbs. of books they brought to the Home

The children contribute to the artwork by drawing or writing on the background paper onto which their portraits are mounted. My aim is to give them a face and a voice, to be “seen and heard”. In addition, I hope that the children gain a sense of pride by helping create a piece of art which not only brings joy to the buyer but also improved living conditions for themselves.
Daggi Wallace, New Life Children's Home

New Life Children's Home in Port-au-Prince, Haiti.

You can see more photos from this trip here.

The portraits have been exhibited in Miami and Dallas and were featured in the Dallas Morning News. There are 14 of the original 31 paintings left. Each piece is created using only archival, museum quality material, measures about 17″x 17″ including the frame and sells for $500. All proceeds go towards finishing the library and aiding the children in their education.
You can see the portraits by clicking here. Click on the individual portraits to read more about each child.
If you have no place on your home or office walls, consider donating the art to your local hospital and deducting it from your taxes. You may also simply donate to the project here and here.
Daggi Wallace, Moni's Kids, Portrait of Child

Portrait of David by Daggi Wallace

Currently, the orphanage has finished a new building to house the library and a place for the kids to study, do arts and crafts and play board games. We are waiting for another group of volunteers to insulate the building against the heat and will then install shelving and deliver more books, games and art and craft supplies, and maybe even a computer or two if funds allow!

Painting portraits to me is all about exploring our shared humanity, the connection we have to each other and our common Source. The children I paint as part of this project are so often unseen, living in the shadows of our world, mostly invisible in our daily lives; yet they are no different from the rest of us, and equal to all of us. I aim to make visible their quiet dignity, the grace and joy they display under the most difficult circumstances. Living among us in our homes, even if only in paintings, they remind us of our blessings and connection to each other as human beings.
DIY Wedding Invitation

And as always my calligraphy font, Belluccia, one of myfonts Most Popular Fonts for 2011, is available at : and


4 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Daggi Wallace
    Apr 06, 2012 @ 17:40:26

    Thank you so much for your beautiful blog post about my work, Debi! I so admire your creativity and talent and am honored to be your friend 🙂


    • Debi Sementelli
      Apr 06, 2012 @ 19:21:56

      It’s my pleasure! The portraits are so beautiful. I know how much time it takes to create them. You have such a big heart. To put your words into action to create a better environment for these kids is so admirable.


  2. Patti Pearson
    Apr 10, 2012 @ 18:12:43

    I took the class from you in March at Paper Source in North Park. Thank you so very much for sharing this about Daggi ! Daggi and I both fly internationally for American and I never knew this about her! Knew she is a wonderful artist
    But nothing about her charity! She is awesome!

    Hope you are well. Enjoyed yor class and your emails give me inspiration! also, please tell Donna I said hi! I will try to contact her to give her the plastic zip folders from Tokyo!

    Best regards,


    • Debi Sementelli
      Apr 10, 2012 @ 18:37:14

      What a small world! Yes Daggi is not only talented but has a huge heart. I’m glad you are getting inspiration from my blog posts! I will be sure to tell Donna hello for you. The plastic zip folders from Tokyo sound interesting…I’d love to see how they’re used.


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