Rasmuson Foundation announces 2018 Individual Artist Awards in Southeast Alaska
May 18, 2018
Painter Mary Ida Henrikson of Ward Cove (Ketchikan area), multimedia artist Nicholas Galanin of Sitka and filmmaker Susan Stark Christianson of Juneau are the Fellowship recipients for Southeast.
Fellowships of $18,000 are awarded to mid-career and mature artists to focus their energy and attention on developing creative work over a 12- month period.
Project Awards are going to master weaver Delores Churchill of Ketchikan; performance artist Roblin Gray Davis, carver Alison Marks and weaver Ricky Tagaban, of Juneau; writers Merry C. Ellefson and Emily Wall, of Douglas; carver Robert Mills of Kake; carver Glenn “Stormy” Hamar of Kasaan; and composer Zak Dylan Wass and clothing designer Peter Williams, both of Sitka.
Project Awards of $7,500 support individuals at all stages of their creative careers for specific, short-term projects.
Four Southeast artists are prior recipients. Davis and Tagaban also received Project Awards in 2012 and 2013, respectively. Churchill was selected as the Rasmuson Foundation Distinguished Artist in 2006 in recognition of her lifetime of achievement as a weaver. Galanin’s 2018 Fellowship is his fourth Individual Artist Award after Fellowships in 2008 and 2014 and a Project Award in 2011.
This year’s Fellows have ambitious projects before them.
Christianson will use her Fellowship to collaborate with KTOO on a new film that follows up on her previous documentary, “The Wisdom of the Grandmothers.” She will interview indigenous elders in Alaska, the Lower 48 and Canada, with a focus on the meaning of traditional prophesy stories and their relevance to today’s world. She is passionate about capturing and sharing the knowledge of tribal elders before it is lost.
Henrikson will use the Tongass National Forest for inspiration in creating at least 20 new oil paintings, experimenting with textures and techniques that she has developed over her long career. “Southeast Alaska is my palette and format,” Henrikson writes. “I've found that doing a series of paintings on a concept bursts into another realm.”
Galanin will use his Fellowship to purchase and fabricate the equipment and custom tools needed to create a large body of sculptural copper work using traditional Tlingit chasing and repoussť metalworking techniques. This sculptural copper practice is rare today. His work will involve study of historical form and process, and training of several apprentices.
“Using indigenous and non-indigenous technologies and materials I resist romanization, categorization and limitation,” he writes. “I use my work to explore adaptation, resilience, survival, active cultural amnesia, dream, memory, cultural resurgence, connection to and disconnection from the land.”
These recipients join the Foundation’s 2018 Distinguished Artist, Alvin Amason of Anchorage and Kodiak Island, who was announced earlier. Artist project profiles also are available on the Foundation’s 2018 IAA webpage and Distinguished Artist webpage, two new features launched this week. Photos and videos of the artists and their work are available by request and can be downloaded from Rasmuson Foundation’s IAA Google Photo album.
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Editing by Mary Kauffman, SitNews
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