Applying for Exhibitions & Grants

Hoping this will help other artists, I want to share my presentation from our Artist Survival Kit workshop last weekend. We focused on writing proposals for grants and exhibitions. 

Many of these cash awards and exhibitions have quick deadlines. But, I think the proposal tips should translate to other artist applications. 

This was the second proposal writing workshop we’ve offered, hoping to encourage more and even better artist applications to our opportunities.  Let us know if you have questions. 

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Showing Caddo Pottery Across the Country: Jeri Redcorn

Guest Author: Cayla Lewis
Professional Grant: Pedestals Booth Upgrade
Jeri Redcorn, Hasinai Twins, Caddo pottery, 2012
Jeri Redcorn, a Caddo potter, is claimed to be responsible for “single-handedly [reviving] Caddo pottery traditions.”  She currently uses native and commercial clay to produce pieces from clay that she coils, burnishes with stone, and then wood fires. She uses her practice as a “gift,” and a way to connect with her ancestors and connect to her Caddo culture today.
One of her greatest honors is having her work displayed in the White House Office as a selection by President Barack and Michelle Obama. Redcorn’s work is known nationally and is also a part of collections from Supreme Court Justice, Sandra Day O’Connor, US Senator David and Molly Boren, and Eagle’s band member, Don Henley.
Each year, Jeri Redcorn attends 5 art shows annually, including Oklahoma’s Red Earth. OVAC’s Professional Basics Grantwill allow her work to be presented more effectively with an upgrade of new pedestals for her booths at these art shows.
The Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition invests in artists’ project through grants for growing careers, creative projects and exceptional continuing education. Find grant guidelines and application here. A free workshop about how to apply will be held October 13. 

Reanimating Cimarron County: MJ Alexander

Guest Author: Cayla Lewis
Creative Projects Grant: IN NO MAN’S LAND: Portraits of the OK Panhandle
M.J. Alexander, Mike Leonard, outside the Loaf & Jug, 
photography, 2012
Oklahoma City resident, M.J. Alexander, has recently been exploring the lesser-populated areas of Oklahoma in her recent project, IN NO MAN’S LAND: Portraits of the OK Panhandle. She starts in western Cimmaron County, where the population is less than 2 people per square mile, and makes her way east through Texas and Beaver counties.
With help from OVAC’s Creative Projects Grant, Alexander hopes to travel to these places, photographing and interviewing the residents of western Oklahoma. Using her background in Journalism and American Culture, she will create a series of photographs displaying the dwindling population of pioneers living in the far-western counties of Oklahoma.
MJ Alexander, The De Casas Twins
Andrea and Alexis
, photography, 2012
Her creative project will include larger-than-life portraits installed on storefronts and abandoned buildings in April 2013, with the intention not to portray a poverty or drought-stricken world but to “allow residents the vantage point to consider their everyday selves as epic and larger-than-life portrayal.” IN NO MAN’S LAND: Portraits of the OK Panhandle  will be a a “celebration of the spirit of Cimarron County the spirit that has kept Cimarron County going through boom and bust,” and the attitudes and personalities of the people that reside there.
Alexander has shown in many solo and group exhibitions all over the state and country as well as provided photography and interviews for many books regarding the American West, including Salt of the Red Earth and Portrait of a Generation: Sons and Daughters of the Red Earth, both of which she is the author and illustrator.

The Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition invests in artists’ project through grants for growing careers, creative projects and exceptional continuing education. Find grant guidelines and application here. Free workshops about how to apply will be held September 8 & October 13. 

Chronicling Artists & the Environment: Kimberly Baker

Guest Author: Cayla Lewis
Professional Grant: Earth Chronicles Project Group Exhibition
Kimberly Baker, Illinois River Misty Morning, photography
Meeker resident and current University of Oklahoma natural sciences student, Kimberly Baker is a conservation photographer with a large emphasis on the Illinois River. She uses her work to promote the conservation of water and the environment, and uses the promotion as the motivation and empowerment for her creative process.
Baker enjoys the “solitary nature” of photography, but has recently teamed up with filmmaker Bob Demboski and New Mexico artist, Fran Hardy to create the educational documentary, Earth Chronicles Project. The Artist’s Process: Oklahoma, featuring Oklahoma artists and creative individuals. A group exhibition of artists related to this film will also be taking place that will coincide with the film’s debut on OETA. With help from OVAC’s Professional Basics Grant, Baker will display 6 large framed works in this exhibition.
Recently premiered at the Mabee Gerrer Museum of Art (MGMA), the documentary will broadcast on OETA September 13, 2012 at 7:00 p.m.  Appearing on several TV and radio stations regarding her interest in and project about the Illinois River, Baker has also exhibited work all around Oklahoma.

The Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition invests in artists’ project through grants for growing careers, creative projects and exceptional continuing education. Find grant guidelines and application here. Free workshops about how to apply will be held September 8 & October 13. 


Heading to Art Prize: Aaron Hauck

Guest Author: Cayla Lewis

Professional Basics Grant: Art Prize
Aaron Hauck, High Technology Forager; Break 
enamel on thermoformed acrylic plastic, 44”x14”x6”, 2011
 
After receiving his MFA at Montana State and studying internationally, Aaron Hauck is an Assistant Professor at East Central University in Ada, OK and the Creative Director at MVP Sport.
His work primarily focuses on consumerism and how it affects contemporary culture and the natural environment. Hauck often references Ancient tools, such as Clovis points to show how tools have changed over time, reflecting on how today; tools are redesigned and mass-produced, with a strong focus on branding. He claims the food-service industry is also like this, and “as a result we have no personal connection with the bulk of the tools we use and the food we eat.”
These ideas inspire his particular industrial and machine aesthetic, leaving little to no trace of human hand. Hauck is greatly influenced by consumerism and sees the beauty in commercial product but also believes that the sleek and shiny will draw the viewer in and eventually leave them to “discover underlying meaning.”
Aaron Hauck, High Technology Forager; Shuffle
enamel on thermoformed acrylic plastic, 44”x14”x6”, 2011
 
Hauck’s “High Technology Foragers,” a collection of six large, wall sculptures have recently been selected to be included in ArtPrize 2012. OVAC’s Professional Basic Grant will help Hauck bring national recognition to his work by transporting the sculptures to the exhibition in Grand Rapids, Michigan opening September 15.


The Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition invests in artists’ project through grants for growing careers, creative projects and exceptional continuing education. Find grant guidelines and application 
hereFree workshops about how to apply are this weekend and October 13. See www.ArtistSurvivalKit.org

Piecing it Together: Romy Owens

Guest Author: Cayla Lewis
Professional Basics Grant: the keanues
Romy Owens, Rob (Pretty Day Blue Sky), 
photographs and thread, 37×31″, 2012
Oklahoma City artist, Romy Owens has been selected as one of five photographers for To and From Oklahoma, an exhibition opening September 7, 2012 at JRB Art at the Elms. During this same time, the Paseo Arts District’s Photofest will also be taking place. OVAC’s Professional Basics Grant will help Owens professionally frame the majority her new body of work for this exhibition.
Owen’s combines multiple parts or multiple photographs to create entirely new compositions, her main inspirations being change and control. Inspired by man-made structures that are neglected or abandoned, Owens documents the change of these structures through the line, color, and textures, as though these elements tell the story of the life of the building. 

She then, with “obsessively controlled hand stitches,” pieces the composition together, to create something new – asking herself, “What am I really hoping to change and what am I really trying to control?”

The Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition invests in artists’ project through grants for growing careers, creative projects and exceptional continuing education. Find grant guidelines and application here. Free workshops about how to apply will be held September 8 & October 13. 

Encouraging Creativity & Voice: Amena Butler

Guest Author: Cayla Lewis
AMENA BUTLER
Professional Grant: Spring Elements

Amena Butler, Ball Day, collage on canvas, 2012
“…Those soft lively colors of nature, the smell of the rain coming, and the idea of skipping work to play outside.”
This is what inspires Oklahoma City-based artist, Amena Butler. Let’s just pause for a moment and think about these things. It is these simple joys and pleasures that have led to Butler’s recent project, Spring Series, which she started in January of 2012. 

Butler enjoys the printmaking processes of monotype, chine colle, and collagraph because of the freedom it allows her to have and how it takes her away from the usual structured lifestyle.
Amena Butler,  Lake Arcadia, collage on canvas, 8×10, 2012
Exhibiting her Spring Series at Langston University, Butler will display along with three other African-American artists. Langston currently does not have an arts department. So Butler and the other artists are hoping to encourage and inspire the students and administration to “seek out creativity and their voice in art.”

Butler is also involved in helping with free art exhibitions, demonstrations, and classes as a way to keep African-American artists pursuing an interest in the arts. OVAC’s Professional Basics Grant will prepare the work for display in the exhibition that runs through September at Langston’s OKC campus.
The Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition invests in artists’ project through grants for growing careers, creative projects and exceptional continuing education. Find grant guidelines and application here. Free workshops about how to apply will be held September 8 & October 13.