McKnight Community-Engaged Artist Fellowships

2020 Fellows

ANNOUNCING THE RECIPIENTS OF THE 2020 MCKNIGHT FELLOWSHIPS FOR COMMUNITY-ENGAGED ARTISTS

Pillsbury House Theatre is proud to announce the two inaugural recipients of the 2020 McKnight Fellowships for Community-Engaged Artists: Cecilia Cornejo Sotelo and Rory Wakemup.

Designed to identify and support outstanding mid-career Minnesota artists, the McKnight Fellowships for Community-Engaged Artists provide recipients with $25,000 stipends, public recognition, professional development, one-on-one mentorship, and an opportunity to participate in a public discussion about their practice. Community-Engaged Artists use their artistic practice to engage relationships aimed at producing social transformation. This intention drives choice and process throughout the conception, design, and implementation of their work. These fellowships are funded by a generous grant from the McKnight Foundation and administered by Pillsbury House Theatre.  For more information about the fellowship program and future opportunities, visit our website at https://pillsburyhouseandtheatre.org/mcknight-artist-fellowships/

The 2020 McKnight fellows were selected from a group of 30 applicants by a panel of arts professionals of varying backgrounds whose careers intersect with community-engaged artistic practice in different ways. This year’s jurors were Kemi Ilesanmi, Executive Director of The Laundromat Project, NYC; DeWayne Barton, founder and CEO of Hood Huggers Intl., Asheville NC; and Roberto Bedoya, Cultural Affairs Manager for the City of Oakland, CA.

ABOUT THE ARTISTS

Cecilia Cornejo Sotelo is a Chilean-American documentary filmmaker, artist, and educator based in Northfield, Minnesota. Known for placing community members at the center of the creative process, she uses a range of approaches and production methodologies to engage them as active participants and co-creators of meaning. Locally rooted yet globally minded, Cecilia’s work examines notions of belonging and the immigrant experience while exploring the traces of historical trauma on people and places.  Cecilia’s work has screened at MoMA’s Documentary Fortnight, Melbourne Latin American Film Festival, L’Alternativa (Barcelona), Cine Las Américas, InVideo (Milan), Athens International Film Festival, Festival de Cine Pobre (Cuba), Minneapolis/St. Paul International Film Festival and many other venues.

She is the recipient of Minnesota State Arts Board and Jerome Foundation grants for her most recent film, Ways of Being Home (2020), made in collaboration with the Latinx community of Northfield, and received funding from Carleton College and the National Association of Latino Arts and Culture for the multi-platform project The Wandering House. She holds an MFA in Film and Video from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and teaches filmmaking at Carleton College and at St. Olaf College, both in Northfield, Minnesota.

The Wandering House, 2018 Cecilia Cornejo

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Rory Wakemup is the Artistic Director and visionary behind Wakemup Productions. A proven leader, gifted teacher, and sought-out community activist with infectious enthusiasm and optimism, he is creatively driven to change the narrative of what it means to be Native American in the 21st century, alleviating effects of racism, and awakening all people to their inherent ancestral indigenous values. An enrolled member of the Bois Forte Anishinabe (Chippewa tribe), his life’s work is to support the recovery of his community and be part of a legacy of healing. He does this through the power of participatory and multidisciplinary art. With his more than 300 post-secondary credits in studio arts and Native American topics, Wakemup practices (and teaches) in any form of studio-related and visual arts medium.

As a deeply collaborative, multi-disciplinary, multi-sector artist, this stable base of support will provide him more opportunities to focus on the work and himself.  As a professional whose work connects four disparate professional networks: indigenous arts, indigenous youth leadership development, local government, and organizing, this award will support his work positioned for what it is, where it is. He holds a MFA in Glass/Sculpture from the University of Wisconsin and a BFA from the Institute of American Indians.

Darth Chief, Mascot Hunter 2018 Rory Wakemup

ABOUT THE JURORS

Kemi Ilesanmi is Executive Director of The Laundromat Project, which advances artists and neighbors as change agents in their own communities. She has previously worked at Creative Capital Foundation and the Walker Art Center. In 2015, she was appointed by the Mayor to the NYC Cultural Affairs Advisory Commission. She is on the board of the Joan Mitchell Foundation and The Broad Room. A graduate of Smith College, NYU, and Coro Leadership NY, she is also a Sterling Network Fellow.

 

 

 

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DeWayne Barton is a native of Asheville, N.C. He grew up in Washington, D.C. and is a Gulf War Veteran. He is co-founder of the Burton Street Community Peace Gardens, the founder and CEO of Hood Huggers Intl. and Hood Tours.  Hood Hugger International, LLC builds greater communication, connection and wealth in systemically marginalized neighborhoods in the Affrilachian region through the arts, environment, and social enterprise. DeWayne was recently appointed by the governor to sit on the board of the NC Arts Council.

 

 

 

 

 

Roberto Bedoya is the Cultural Affairs Manager for the City of Oakland where he most recently shepherded the City’s Cultural Plan – “Belonging in Oakland: A Cultural Development Plan.” Through-out his career he has consistently supported artists-centered cultural practices and advocated for expanded definitions of inclusion and belonging in cultural sector. His essays, advocacy, and policy work has reframed the discussion on cultural policy to shed light on exclusionary practices in cultural policy decision making. He is a Creative Placemaking Fellow at Arizona State University.

About

Applications for the inaugural McKnight Community-Engaged Artist Fellowship program are now closed. Applications for 2021 will open in summer of 2020. The 2020 McKnight Community-Engaged Artist Fellows are Cecilia Cornejo and Rory Wakemup.

Community-Engaged Artists are artists who use their artistic practice to engage relationships aimed at producing social transformation. The goal of the Community-Engaged Artist Fellowship program is to identify and support mid-career Minnesota artists who create exceptional community engaged work. The program will use an independent jury of three arts professionals to award two fellowships. The fellowship will run for one year: January 1, 2020– January 1, 2021. Artists from all areas of Minnesota are encouraged to apply.

SELECTED FELLOWS RECEIVE:

• $25,000 (unrestricted): Fellowship funding may be used to enhance any aspect of the artist’s life, such as overhead costs, the purchase of materials, travel, and other living expenses. Awards are subject to state and federal income tax guidelines.
• $3,000 in additional funds for a pilot initiative leading to the development of new community engaged work.
• Access to PH+T’s facilities and equipment.
• Support from PH+T staff and menu of community resources and services.
• Fellowship Discussion Series: Fellows will select a national expert in the field to be in dialogue with throughout the term of their fellowship, culminating in a public discussion about community engaged practice.

Applicants will be evaluated and selected based on the transformative impact of their work as evidenced in submitted materials, and work samples. Consideration will be given to accomplishments to date as well as promise for continued development and the impact the fellowship will have on the artist.

APPLY:

Applications for the inaugural McKnight Community-Engaged Artist Fellowship program are now closed. Applications for 2021 will open in summer of 2020.

GET IN TOUCH:

Mike Hoyt, Program Director
mikeh@pillsburyunited.org / 612.787.3655
Pillsbury House Theatre / 3501 Chicago Ave S, MPLS

ABOUT MCKNIGHT FELLOWSHIPS:

The McKnight Foundation, a family foundation based in Minnesota, advances a more just, creative, and abundant future where people and planet thrive. The McKnight Foundation’s Arts program is one of the oldest and largest of its kind in the country.  Established in 1981, the McKnight Artist Fellowships provide annual, unrestricted cash awards to outstanding mid-career Minnesota artists in ten (currently expanding to 15) areas. For more information, visit https://www.mcknight.org/programs/arts/the-mcknight-artist-fellowships/.

Info Sessions

To learn more about the McKnight Community Engaged Artist Fellowship program, attend one of our information sessions around the state of Minnesota. If you are unable to attend a session in-person, you can also view a PRERECORDED PRESENTATION which includes the materials presented at the in-person sessions.

We strongly encourage all interested applicants to review the full guidelines prior to submission.

View / download the PDF packet containing the MCKNIGHT CEA FELLOWSHIP GUIDELINES

Information sessions will be led by Fellowship Program Director Mike Hoyt.

2020 Information Sessions to be announced this summer.

For questions about the information sessions, contact Mike Hoyt at mikeh@pillsburyunited.org or 612-787-3655.

Guidelines

We strongly encourage all interested applicants to review the full guidelines prior to submission.

View / download the PDF packet containing the MCKNIGHT CEA FELLOWSHIP GUIDELINES

ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS:

Please read carefully. Applicants who do not meet all of the following criteria and expectations will not be considered and should not apply.

The intent of this program is to recognize and support mid-career artists living and working in Minnesota who demonstrate a sustained level of accomplishment, commitment, and artistic excellence. Artists who are eligible for these fellowships:

  • Have or maintain MN residency for at least one year prior to application (i.e. since Oct. 11, 2018) and for the duration of the fellowship year.
  • Are mid-career with a body of work that demonstrates a sustained level of accomplishment, commitment, and artistic excellence. Have at least eight (8) years of professional experience implementing community engaged art. Community engaged projects, public exhibitions, or initiatives undertaken as part of a degree-seeking program at an institution of higher learning will not be considered, i.e. senior or thesis exhibitions, juried student shows, etc.
  • Create work that falls within an arts context. The fellowship is limited to Community Engaged Artists who are at a stage beyond emerging.  Community Engaged Artists, as defined for the purposes of this fellowship, are artists who use their artistic practice to engage relationship aimed at producing social transformation. And this intention drives choice and process throughout the conception, design, and implementation of their work. Community engaged art is an umbrella term for different forms of artistic practice. Some examples include art activism, community based art, place-based art, cultural organizing, participatory art, social practice. Whatever form they take, community-engaged art practices challenge the conventional terms by which arts are described, valued, and assessed. They strive to extend beyond elite perspectives, forms and institutions toward inclusivity, participation, equity, justice and social change. The Fellowship Director screens applicants to ensure eligibility.
  • Be willing to participate in all aspects of the fellowship program, including some meetings, scheduled dialogue with national experts, and a culminating public discussion about their work.
  • Can only apply to one 2019 McKnight Artist Fellowship in any artistic discipline (i.e. community engaged arts, visual arts, ceramics, printmaking, media arts, choreographers, dance, composers, musicians, playwrights, theater arts, writers. UPDATE: Due to the roll out of new McKnight Fellowships for Community Engaged Arts, Textile Arts, Book Arts, and Printmaking, artists that have applied in other program disciplines that did not receive a Fellowship in 2019 are eligible to apply for this program in 2019. This will only be allowed in 2019.
  • Have not been a recipient of a McKnight Artist Fellowship within any artistic discipline in the last five years. Anyone who received a fellowship in any discipline in or before 2014 is eligible to apply.
  • Demonstrate growth and ongoing artistry since their most recent McKnight Artist Fellowship.
  • Are not staff, board, or immediate family of the McKnight Foundation or fellowship administrative partners.
  • Are not enrolled full-time in an academic program.

FAQs

DO I HAVE TO PROPOSE A PROJECT FOR THIS FELLOWSHIP PROGRAM?

This is NOT a project grant, therefore applicants do not have to outline or propose what new work they wish to produce or engage in if awarded a Fellowship.

WHAT IS A COMMUNITY-ENGAGED ARTIST?

Community Engaged Artists, as defined for the purposes of this fellowship, are artists who use their artistic practice to engage relationship aimed at producing social transformation. This intention drives choice and process throughout the conception, design, and implementation of their work.

DO I HAVE TO LIVE IN THE TWIN CITIES?

No! The Fellowship is open to all Minnesotans, and artists from all areas of the state are encouraged to apply.

WHAT IS A MID-CAREER ARTIST?

For the purposes of this fellowship, a mid-career artist is someone who has a body of work that demonstrates a sustained level of accomplishment, commitment, and artistic excellence. They will have at least eight (8) years of professional experience implementing community engaged art.  Community engaged projects, public exhibitions, or initiatives undertaken as part of a degree-seeking program at an institution of higher learning will not be considered, i.e. senior or thesis exhibitions, juried student shows, etc.

WHAT CRITERIA WILL JURORS USE TO SELECT FELLOWS?

Jurors will use the following criteria when reviewing all submitted application materials:

Artistic Merit: The artist presents a sustained commitment to community engaged art practice, risk-taking, and clear concepts and creative methodologies that advance social and artistic purposes beyond individual perspective or experience.

Transformative Impact: The artist’s creative practice clearly creates social transformation; collective meaning making, collective empowerment, and social/political/cultural resonance, value, or change.

Creative Integrity: The artist’s work demonstrates integrity and ethical use of material with specific cultural origins and context, demonstrates responsible social and/or environmental practice, disrupts and challenges dominant norms or standards, and models new forms of creative action.

Engagement with defined communities: There is a clear articulation of the role and relationship of the artist with the communities in which they are engaged.  The artist engages in equitable creative practice which accounts for social/structural/systemic inequities.

WHAT WILL I RECEIVE IF SELECTED?
  • $25,000 (unrestricted) Fellowship funding may be used to enhance any aspect of the artist’s life, such as overhead costs, the purchase of materials, travel, and other living expenses. Awards are subject to state and federal income tax guidelines.
  • $3,000 in additional funds for a pilot initiative leading to the development of new community engaged work.
  • Access to PH+T’s facilities and equipment.
  • Support from PH+T staff and menu of community resources and services.
  • Fellowship Discussion Series; Fellows will select a national expert in the field to be in dialogue with throughout the term of their fellowship, culminating in a public discussion about community engaged practice.
WHEN CAN I APPLY?

Applications for 2021 will open this summer.

HOW DO I APPLY?

Apply using the Submittable form found under the “Apply” tab. If you have difficulty filling out this form, please contact Mike Hoyt, Program Director, at mikeh@pillsburyunited.org or 612-787-3655.

Apply

Applications for the inaugural McKnight Community-Engaged Artist Fellowship program are now closed. Applications for 2021 will open in summer of 2020.

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