The Joan Mitchell Foundation is excited to announce the Emerging Artist Grant Program, a new initiative designed to assist emerging visual artists across the United States. This pilot program will award a diverse group of ten artists with an unrestricted grant of $12,000 per artist in addition to professional support throughout the year.
The Foundation seeks to award visual artists who demonstrate excellence in their work, a commitment to their careers and artistic communities, and a willingness to engage in the varied support provided by this program. Recipients will have the opportunity to build relationships with one another, the Foundation, and an expansive community of arts professionals. The combination of funding and supplemental programming is intended to further recipients' artistic practice, encourage career sustainability, and best equip them to make their own artistic choices and forge a unique career path.
A primary purpose of this program is to provide artists with access to opportunities that can effect positive change in their lives and, in turn, the field at large. Historically the Foundation has supported emerging artists through our MFA Grant Program; this program was suspended in 2013. As an organization that values cultural equity, we hope through this new initiative to benefit a population of artists beyond just the sphere of higher education, a system that can suffer from homogeneity and a lack of equity. We will thoughtfully engage a broad group of emerging artists and prioritize diversity in all areas, including artistic practice, geographic location, gender, age, background, socio-economic level, sexual orientation, ethnicity, and all levels of educational attainment.
The Foundation defines "emerging" as those early in their artistic careers (regardless of age), who are gaining momentum, and may be at a critical juncture in their career when this support would be the most impactful. These artists demonstrate potential in their practice through risk-taking and pushing their work in dynamic ways, and are not yet considered well established professionally by indicators such as major gallery representation, significant exhibition history, awards and commissions, or sustaining an income derived solely from art sales.
To identify artist nominees for the 2015 grant cycle, the Foundation engaged nominators nationally to recommend artists, who were then invited to apply for the grant. Then, a secondary independent jury panel selected sixteen program finalists through an anonymous review process. Nominators and jurors included visual artists, curators, and individuals from arts organizations and the academic community. (Nominators and jurors are selected by the Foundation and participate anonymously: we cannot accept unsolicited requests or applications.) A committee of Foundation staff and an outside reviewer determined the final recipient group through an interview process in the fall of 2015. In addition to the above ten recipients, finalists who progressed to this interview round will receive a Finalist Award in the amount of $1,500.
For expanded thoughts about this grant and our nominator process, please visit our From the Foundation page.
Emerging Artist Grant Program Recipients & Finalists
Artworks shown on subsequent pages are selected from works submitted by the artist in their grant application.