Part of our mission at First Arts, from inception, was to provide collectors and other visitors to our previews and shows a hospitable and informative visit. So, amid the many challenges that 2020 presented, one of the biggest challenges we faced was how to engage our community in meaningful interactions when we couldn't do so face to face. Like so many, we turned to the internet to disseminate ancillary material for our website, FirstArts.ca. The ambitious development of our online platform could not have been achieved without the enthusiastic support of good partners and a first-rate team. These enhancements to our online presence have enabled us to find new ways of achieving our goal of promoting interest in and awareness of Indigenous art and re-invigorating the market in our program of curated auctions and exhibitions.
Our efforts were not in vain. We are happy to report that the market for high-end Indigenous art remains strong. First Arts live auctions set several price records for a number of important artists and communities, with a number of works purchased by enthusiastic collectors for double our high estimates and beyond. We wish to express our deepest gratitude to our community of consignors and collectors. To our consignors who have entrusted us with the sale of their treasures, and to the collectors and connoisseurs whose support and encouragement has made it possible for First Arts to continue our strive for excellence, we say thank you. We could not have achieved any of this without the confidence placed in us by those who share our passion.
Our continued success has allowed us to maintain our commitment to supporting Inuit, First Nations, and Métis arts communities by raising critical funds for important initiatives. We at First Arts know that it is imperative that we give back and support programs that seek to bolster Indigenous art and artists and work to amplify Indigenous voices. At the end of 2020, our offer to match donations raised $38,600 for the Inuit Art Quarterly, the only magazine devoted entirely to Inuit art. In addition to the funds pledged to the Inuit Art Foundation, we have made a $10,000 donation to Indspire, a national Indigenous charity that invests in the education of Inuit, First Nations, and Métis students by providing scholarships and bursaries to Indigenous post-secondary students across Canada. We are proud to play our part in raising critical funds for these initiatives and encourage you to give what you can to the Inuit Art Foundation and Indspire today.
In looking ahead to 2021, our focus will continue to be on a vibrant program of exhibitions and auctions for collectors. And until such time as we are able to gather together safely with our community, we will do so using a system of virtual shows and previews.
Ingo Hessel, Nadine Di Monte, Mark London & Pat Feheley