2015 Recipients

For activities taking place between July 1, 2014–June 30, 2015

Arkansas

Artist’s Laboratory Theatre  (Fayetteville)

$15,000 for public performances of The New Now, an interactive, environmental series of plays that investigate the modern human condition engrossed with, and reliant upon, social media and technology. The first in the series of performances is planned for October 2014 at Tri Cycle Farms. Artist’s Laboratory Theatre is an experimental, site-specific theatre company that creates original scripts through a long term, creative incubator process working with a group of actors, designers, and directors.

Barbara Satterfield (Conway)

$10,000 for a tour of three multi-figured ceramic sculpture installations, And Then I: Monuments to Pivotal Moments. Each installation, placed in non-traditional locations in one town for two weeks, captures a pivotal moment when an event, comment, or revelation affects the figures involved. The installation locations are conducive to unhurried contemplation (hospital/clinic, library, and community/civic center or church). The installations are then displayed together for a final day at that town’s outdoor regional festival. Publicity and installation materials invite viewers to contribute responses that will be incorporated into a culminating exhibit. These audience contributions will include invitations to complete the phrase And then by: 1) posting a selfie with the sculptures on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram at #ANDTHENI, 2) completing a comment card, 3) texting input to a QR code survey, 4) taking a survey card, and/or 5) mailing/emailing feedback to the project archives. A culminating exhibition in a more traditional art-viewing setting will integrate the sculptural installations with the collected responses.

Kansas

Salina Art Center (Salina)

$6,700 for Surrounded, a site-specific, progressive installation created during a residency by Eli Gold, a Lawrence, KS, artist. The completed work will include a carefully handcrafted chair in juxtaposition to a massive curved wall of wood, stone, salvaged construction material, and the detritus of everyday life. The fabrication and installation will involve the artist and members of the community prompting dialogue about the relationship between skilled craft and manual labor alongside the societal and ecological issue of waste.

Van Go, Inc. (Lawrence)

$15,000 for Ad Astra Per Aspera, the final component of a yearlong program that is an artistic homage to Kansas. Thirty at-risk youth, hired as apprentice-artists, will learn glass fusing, painting, woodworking, and metalworking to create art that represents the Ad Astra theme. The artwork will be shown and sold during the organization’s annual holiday adornment and public recognition ceremony.

Missouri

Laumeier Sculpture Park (St. Louis)

$13,000 for Bugs, a new commission by Tom Huck for Laumeier’s Children’s Sculpture Garden. Three large-scale bugs, based on a series of woodcut prints inspired by the insects inhabiting the microenvironment of the park, will be the artist’s first public art. As part of Laumeier’s ongoing partnership with the St. Louis Science Center, Huck will serve as an artist-in-residence, a collaboration that will help expand Laumeier’s focus on the intersection of art, nature, and science and will illustrate how, when experienced together, these disciplines can inspire creativity and critical thinking about our urban and suburban environments.

Paul Mesner Puppets (Kansas City)

$15,000 for Ragtime to Bebop: The Story of Kansas City Jazz, a new puppet production utilizing rod, shadow, and other puppeteering techniques to tell the story from the perspective of a young Charlie Parker. Through Parker’s eyes, the story of how Kansas City’s jazz scene evolved will be told by the characters he encounters, the clubs in which he plays, and the historical and social events that allowed the music scene to flourish in the “Paris of the Plains.”

Nebraska

Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts (Omaha)

$15,000 for an agricultural artist residency, a pilot program for engaging rural communities through contemporary arts. In partnership with leading social practitioner Mel Ziegler, a rural residency program focused on the fate of the Ogallala Aquifer and the future of agriculture on the High Plains will be held in Rushville, NE. This residency will ultimately generate a micro-exhibition suitable for traveling to small galleries and other rural cultural venues.

Bone Creek Museum of Agrarian Art (David City)

$13,100 to produce The Farm: Then, Now and Tomorrow, photographs of farms in southeast Nebraska from the early to mid 1900s that will be crowd-sourced from individuals and families throughout the Midwest. Regionally known photographers and artists will then be invited by the curator to create new work that portrays the same farm scenes or people in their current state. Their work will also project the future of farming and agrarian life. The historic photographs and new work will be exhibited from March–June 2015.

Omaha Theater Company (Omaha)

$15,000 for Buffalo Bill’s Cowboy Band, a new play by Nebraska playwright Max Sparber, created in full view and with the input of K–12 students, the play’s intended audience. In partnership with Brownell-Talbot School, the project will use history as a launch point for examination of theatrical techniques by providing historical and sociopolitical context through a series of workshops, residencies, and performances.

Oklahoma

Arts and Humanities Council of Tulsa (Tulsa)

$15,000 for Woven Matters, an exhibition of new work by Shan Goshorn and Sarah Sense. Just as their tribal ancestors engaged in the extensive process of gathering and preparing splints for weaving, both artists spend considerable time researching and preparing their weaving materials, formulating ideas to best express a focused narrative. In conjunction with the exhibition, both artists will offer residency activities at the Cherokee Arts Center in Tahlequah, OK.

Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition (Oklahoma City)

$15,000 for Momentum Spotlight, the commissioning of six young artists to create new projects for exhibitions to be held in Oklahoma City at the Farmers Public Market and in Tulsa at Living Arts. The program will provide curatorial guidance, critical writing assistance, and wider visibility for emerging artists who are either working in large ambitious scale or are focused on socially engaged creative practices.

Perpetual Motion Dance (Oklahoma City)

15,000 for Rebound, an original concert performance that intertwines modern and aerial dance with film technology. The project explores the concepts of temporality and memory, in relation to the ephemeral nature of dance as art. The premiere will take place at Oklahoma Contemporary Arts Center in May 2015.

Texas

Jonathan Norton (Dallas)

$15,000 for Mississippi Goddam, a full-length play that tells the story of a family who lives down the street from Medgar Evers in 1963. The play takes place on the eve of Evers’ assassination. The play is currently undergoing an extended workshop process that involves a number of informal readings and talkback sessions. The full production will be produced by the South Dallas Cultural Center, which is committed to developing new works by local artists, particularly those that are inspired by the vibrancy and diversity of the African Diaspora.

Sehba Sarwar (Houston)

$15,000 for What Is Home?, an art installation and publication that explores birth, heritage, migration, partnership, and parenting across borders. The installation created in Houston’s Gulfton neighborhood will connect with the local immigrant, refugee, and transplanted communities, and is an extension of recent writings about her own borders, specifically Houston and Karachi, Pakistan. This is a continuation of work undertaken while she was a artist in residence at the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Center for the Arts at the University of Houston, a portion of which she presented in a TEDxHouston talk in 2013.