Six Minnesota artists have been awarded 2017 Emerging Artist Grants of $2,000 each by VSA Minnesota. The 21st annual awards, funded by the Jerome Foundation, recognize excellence by emerging Minnesota artists with disabilities and encourage them to create new work. Selected from 55 applicants, grantees are:
Ayesha Adu, Minneapolis — screenplay writing
Sarah Drake, Sauk Rapids — painting & mixed media
Ruth Lais, Minneapolis — mixed media
Luke Lyons, Minneapolis — ceramics
Carrie Salberg, White Bear Lake — creative non-fiction writing
Joey Schad, St. Paul — music performance
The grants were awarded following a jurying process conducted by individuals with backgrounds in the written, visual and performing arts. Panelists looked at samples of the artists’ work, resumes and artist statements. Artists scoring highest in artistic quality and received awards. All grantees are first-time Jerome grant recipients. Members of the panels included:
Writing & Performance Panel:
Hannah K. Holman, program manager, Minnesota Theater Alliance; managing director, Savage Umbrella; independent creative consultant;
Gemma Irish, playwright/writer/performer;
Loren Niemi, storyteller, arts administrator;
Chris Osgood, VP, community relations, McNally Smith College of Music, musician;
Akiko Ostlund, curatorial assistant/catalyst, Intermedia Arts;
Marion Wittenbreer, writer.
Visual Arts Panel:
Elizabeth Black, staff at McNally Smith College of Music & Walker Art Center; freelance curator and production designer;
Nicole Buchholz, children/youth program director, Minnetonka Center for the Arts;
Juleana Enright, communications/social media consultant, Gamut Gallery;
William G. Franklin, humanities professor, McNally Smith College of Music, independent art curator;
Anne Krocak, visual artist, sculptor, past grant recipient;
Janis Lane-Ewart, development officer, KBEM;
Leslie Palmer-Ross, director of healthcare & art services for Art Force;
MaryLynn Pulscher, environmental education coordinator, Minneapolis Park Board; event manager, Minneapolis Monarch Festival.
From 1996 to 2017, VSA Minnesota has presented 132 grant awards to 102 individuals, including 26 repeat winners, 68 Visual Artists, 32 Writers, 23 Performers or Composers, and 9 Multi-Media Artists.
The Jerome Foundation, created by artist and philanthropist Jerome Hill (1905-1972), seeks to contribute to a dynamic and evolving culture by supporting the creation, development, and production of new works by emerging artists. It makes grants to not-for-profit arts organizations and artists in Minnesota and New York City. It is affiliated with the Camargo Foundation in Cassis, France.