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Jason Rapp

First Jazz Road Tours grants awarded for 2020

South Arts announces the first series of artists to receive Jazz Road Tours grants since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Jazz Road Tours grant program offers up to $15,000 directly to artists so they can develop tours into communities across the country. The newest Jazz Road Tours grant recipients are:
  • Svetlana / New York Collective from Pound Ridge, New York received $14,946 to tour the Southeastern U.S. from Feb. 9-19, 2021.
  • Philippe Lemm Trio from New York City received $6,250 to tour from upstate New York through Florida from Feb. 11-21, 2021.
  • Allan Harris: Kate’s Soulfood from New York City received $15,000 to tour through North Carolina, South Carolina, and Florida from Feb. 13-20, 2021.
  • Oscar Peñas from New York City received $15,000 to tour through California, Arizona, and New Mexico from March 3-6, 2021.
  • Lucy Yeghiazaryan from The Bronx, New York received $8,400 to tour from Pennsylvania through Massachusetts from March 5-13, 2021.
  • Brenda Nicole Moorer from Atlanta received $14,480 to tour from Louisiana through New York from March 20-28, 2021.
  • The Jon Irabagon Quartet from Brooklyn, New York received $14,200 to tour through Maryland, Pennsylvania, New York, and Massachusetts from April 7-18, 2021.
“The past eight months have been exceptionally challenging for jazz artists,” said Sara Donnelly, program director for Jazz Road at South Arts. “We are optimistic that some artists are proactively laying the groundwork to share their work with audiences in-person soon.” While the dates and details of the funded tours are subject to change, they represent a solid commitment and dedicated plan between the artists and venues to bring jazz to their communities. “We are hopeful that the proposed dates will occur,” continued Donnelly, “but it is vital that the health, safety, and well-being of everyone involved is front-and-center. The artists and venues have communicated terms if dates need to be postponed.”

Applications are open

Jazz Road Tours, launched in 2018, is accepting applications on a rolling basis from artists across the country interested in taking their work on the road. “Artists, as soon as you are able to safely begin planning tours, we are here to support your work and help make your gigs financially feasible,” continued Donnelly. “There is no need to rush applications for this program, and submissions will be open until at least 2022.” Jazz Road, a national program funded by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation with additional support from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, is led by South Arts in partnership with the five other U.S. Regional Arts Organizations (Arts Midwest, Mid-America Arts Alliance, Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation, New England Foundation for the Arts, and Western Arts Alliance/WESTAF). Through Jazz Road and the flagship Jazz Road Tours grant program, artists can apply for support to build small tours and further explore their work while receiving equitable fees. Artists may apply on a rolling basis for up to $15,000 to tour their work through Jazz Road Tours. Additionally, a Creative Residency program will launch later this year. Further details about South Arts and Jazz Road are available by visiting www.southarts.org.

About South Arts

South Arts advances Southern vitality through the arts. The nonprofit regional arts organization was founded in 1975 to build on the South’s unique heritage and enhance the public value of the arts. South Arts’ work responds to the arts environment and cultural trends with a regional perspective. South Arts offers an annual portfolio of activities designed to support the success of artists and arts providers in the South, address the needs of Southern communities through impactful arts-based programs, and celebrate the excellence, innovation, value and power of the arts of the South. For more information, visit www.southarts.org.

Jason Rapp

Tuning Up: Arts people news + down to the wire

Good morning!  "Tuning Up" is a morning post series where The Hub delivers curated, quick-hit arts stories of interest to readers. Sometimes there will be one story, sometimes there will be several. Get in tune now, and have a masterpiece of a day. And now, in no particular order...


South Arts names two from S.C. to Emerging Leaders of Color program

The Hub helped promote South Arts' Emerging Leaders of Color opportunity once, twice, or three times, so it's only right that we let you know how it all shook out. Two leaders from South Carolina were named to the cohort: Melanie Colclough of Sumter (executive director of Patriot Hall/Sumter County Cultural Center) and Jemimah Ekeh of Columbia (freelance designer + administrator with One Columbia for Arts & Culture). There is more about the program and see who was accepted from other states right here.

State's arts community loses two beacons

We pause to note with sadness the passing of two members of South Carolina's tight-knit arts community:

It's down to the wire

No. Not that. This is your two-weeks' two-day notice that nomination time is coming to a close for the South Carolina Governor's Awards for the Arts and the Jean Laney Harris Folk Heritage Award. Nominations for both are due by 11:59 p.m. ET THIS FRIDAY, Nov. 6.

Submitted material

South Arts awards arts orgs $1.67 million in Resilience Funding

Three awarded in South Carolina


Investing in the long-term success and strength of arts and cultural infrastructure is core to the South Arts Resilience Fund.

With grants ranging from $30,000 to $100,000, 34 small- and mid-sized arts organizations across the region are receiving a total of $1.674 million to build their resilience through and beyond the COVID-19 pandemic. This fund, managed by South Arts, is part of the United States Regional Arts Resilience Fund supported by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. “These organizations represent a cross-section of the creativity vital to our region,” said Susie Surkamer, CEO and president of South Arts. “Their work impacts artists and audiences across their respective states, the region, and the nation. These awards will allow them to reimagine their work in the face of the pandemic, and emerge stronger than before.” Some highlights of the funded organizations and projects include:
  • Junebug Productions of New Orleans will receive $30,000 to build new revenue streams through the creation of a Junebug Digital Platform as a digital extension of story-sharing as well as an expansion of their fundraising capacity.
  • Appalshop of Whitesburg, Kentucky will receive $100,000 to expand their capacity to provide online content and engage in racial equity planning to analyze their work and policies. Additional funds will convert their facility to renewable energy sources.
  • Collage Dance Collective of Memphis, Tennessee will receive $55,000 to support televised broadcasts of their season as well as a reimagination of their membership program to be more inclusive and robust while increasing revenue.
In June, nearly 500 arts organizations from Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee were nominated for consideration by themselves and leaders in the field. Of those nominees, 95 were invited to complete a full application and proposal. The applications were then reviewed by panels of experts, who adjudicated each organization based on criteria including impact, vision, geographic scope, and service to the underserved. Three organizations in South Carolina were selected for awards:
  • Colour of Music Festival (Mount Pleasant) $35,900
  • Hub City Writers Project (Spartanburg) $30,000
  • Spoleto Festival USA (Charleston) $50,000
In contrast to funds dealing with the immediate needs of organizations during the pandemic, the South Arts Resilience Fund asked organizations to look further toward the future. “These are unprecedented times and we are glad to provide arts organizations the flexibility and resources to explore their work,” continued Surkamer. “The strategies for resilience look different for each organization, but the ultimate goal is almost always the same: create deeper, more meaningful connections with audiences while working towards long-term sustainability.” The South Arts Resilience Fund is part of South Arts’ comprehensive approach to supporting the arts throughout the pandemic. In April, South Arts distributed 450 grants of $1,000 directly to jazz artists nationwide. Throughout the summer, South Arts also awarded $725,000 in CARES Act funding to arts organizations supporting employment of their workers with an emphasis on rural, culturally specific, and statewide service organizations. Additionally, South Arts has adjusted their other programs to reflect new priorities over the course of the pandemic. A full list of South Arts Resilience Fund recipients as well as information about all other South Arts programs is available by visiting www.southarts.org.

About South Arts

South Arts advances Southern vitality through the arts. The nonprofit regional arts organization was founded in 1975 to build on the South’s unique heritage and enhance the public value of the arts. South Arts’ work responds to the arts environment and cultural trends with a regional perspective. South Arts offers an annual portfolio of activities designed to support the success of artists and arts providers in the South, address the needs of Southern communities through impactful arts-based programs, and celebrate the excellence, innovation, value and power of the arts of the South. For more information, visit www.southarts.org.

Jason Rapp

South Arts Southern Circuit to screen films across Southeast

Presbyterian College returns as partner venue


South Arts announces the lineup of 16 Screening Partner organizations and 18 films and filmmaking teams selected for the 2020-2021 Southern Circuit Tour of Independent Filmmakers.

During their tours, filmmakers will present screenings of their films with screening partners between September 2020 and April 2021 and participate in post-screening Q&As with audiences to discuss film subjects and the filmmaking process.

To prioritize the wellbeing and flexibility of screening partners, filmmakers, and audiences during the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2020-2021 Southern Circuit season will feature a hybrid of in-person and online screenings. Additionally, this season includes a shift to exclusively presenting documentaries, renewing the program’s focus on real-life stories and issues; previous seasons included a mix of documentaries, narrative features, and experimental work. "Access to independent documentary filmmaking is more important than ever. We have taken steps to ensure that our audiences and filmmakers can share these essential conversations, regardless of the circumstances,” said Teresa Hollingsworth, program director for Film and Traditional Arts. "Through Southern Circuit, audiences interact with filmmakers directly, learning about the art of filmmaking and engaging with issues relevant to their community through a new lens.”
Earlier this year, screening partners reviewed and selected the films for this season from a roster of invited documentary films. From September 2020 through April 2021, each screening partner will present five films and filmmakers, and many will further engage filmmakers in adjunct activities such as workshops and class visits. The first event of the series features a screening of Coded Bias followed by a Q&A discussion with director Shalini Kantayya. The screening and live Q&A will be presented online Tuesday, Sept. 15 at 7:30 p.m. ET for all screening partners and their audiences. A recording of the program will be streamed on Sunday, Sept. 20 at 4 p.m. ET. Presbyterian College in Clinton (Laurens Co.) returns as the partner venue for South Carolina.

Films / Filmmakers

  • Big Fur – Dan Wayne, Director
  • Cane Fire – Anthony Banua-Simon, Director
  • Code of the Freaks – Salome Chasnoff, Director
  • Coded Bias – Shalini Kantayya, Director
  • Cured – Bennett Singer & Patrick Sammon, Co-Directors
  • Fandango at the Wall – Varda Bar-Kar, Director
  • Far East Deep South – Larissa Lam, Director
  • Hurdle – Michael Rawley, Director
  • Mr. Handy’s Blues – Joanne Fish, Director
  • Narrowsburg – Martha Shane, Director
  • Overland – Elisabeth Haviland James & Revere La Noue, Co-Directors
  • Picture a Scientist – Sharon Shattuck & Ian Cheney, Co-Directors
  • Picture Character – Martha Shane & Ian Cheney, Co-Directors
  • Reggae Boyz – Till Schauder, Director
  • Socks on Fire – Bo McGuire, Director
  • Waging Change – Abby Ginzberg, Director
  • Warrior Women – Christina D. King & Elizabeth A. Castle, Co-Directors
  • and a special preview screening of Thumbs Up for Mother Universe: Stories from the Life of Lonnie Holley – George King, Director

A full listing of all screening dates, times, and locations will be posted later this summer on the South Arts website, as well as each screening partner's website.


These events are made possible through the Southern Circuit Tour of Independent Filmmakers, a South Arts program. Since its inception in 1975, Southern Circuit has brought some of best independent filmmakers and their films from around the country to communities throughout the South. The program is made possible through a partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts.

Jason Rapp

Hub E-vents: July 27+

You want art. You crave art.

#SCartists and arts organizations want to fill that void. They live for that. It’s a calling. Yet in times of social distancing, that’s hard to do. Through the wonders of modern technology, many are trying and succeeding. So while we’re all staying home to protect vulnerable family, friends, and neighbors,  The Hub is stepping up to fill the void between artists and arts lovers. (Learn more about Hub E-vents here.)

South Arts, Kennedy Center partner for "Arts Across America"

[caption id="attachment_37970" align="aligncenter" width="600"] Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Washington.[/caption] Beginning today, over 200 artists will be featured in a curated series broadcast by the Kennedy Center. Produced by the Kennedy Center's Social Impact initiatives, Arts Across America will uplift artists and showcase art from communities and regions across the country in this time of uncertainty. Over 20 weeks, Arts Across America will feature free, digital performances from over 200 diverse, visionary artists who play leadership roles in their communities, exemplify unique regional artistic styles, and frequently use their medium as a tool for advocacy and social justice. Arts Across America is made possible and livestreamed by Facebook and will continue through Dec. 11, 2020.

“Bringing the world closer together is at the core of Facebook and that’s exactly why we’re supporting the Kennedy Center’s Arts Across America program to help people around the country connect virtually through their appreciation for the arts,” said Facebook’s Director of Public Affairs Robert Traynham. “We look forward to seeing the diverse artists share their talents through this innovative program.”


Arts Across America will be available on Facebook Live, YouTube, and the Kennedy Center website, five days a week at 4 p.m. ET. A rotating performance schedule will feature performers presented by the Kennedy Center and presenting partner organizations invited to curate performances as identified by the National Endowment for the Arts’s Regional Artist Organizations: Arts Midwest; Mid-America Arts Alliance; Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation; New England Foundation for the Arts; South Arts; Western States Arts Federation; jurisdictional arts agencies representing U.S. territories; and Sankofa.org. An initial calendar for this celebration of all who contribute to the culture of the U.S. is below:
  • July 27: Minneapolis, Minnesota – Arts Midwest: TruArtSpeaks
  • July 28: Virginia – Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation and The Floyd Country Store: Earl White and Eddie Bond
  • July 30: Miami, Florida – South Arts: Dimensions Dance Theatre of Miami, Sammy Figueroa, and Celia & Paco Fonta
  • July 31: Tucson and Phoenix, Arizona – West Arts: Brian Lopez
  • August 3: Burlington, Vermont – New England Foundation for the Arts and The Flynn Center for the Performing Arts: Christal Brown
  • August 4: Kansas City, Missouri – Mid-America Arts Alliance, The Bruce R. Watkins Center, and 1KC Radio: Glenn North
  • August 6: The Virgin Islands Council on the Arts: Stanley and the Ten Sleepless Knights and the AY AY Cultural Dancers
  • August 11: Maryland – Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation: Joe’s Movement Emporium
  • August 13: Tennessee and Kentucky – South Arts: Amythyst Kiah and The Local Honeys
More information about Arts Across America can be found on the Kennedy Center's website.
South Arts is a strategic partner of the South Carolina Arts Commission.

Jason Rapp

Tuning Up: Southern Prize awarded Monday

Good morning!  "Tuning Up" is a morning post series where The Hub delivers curated, quick-hit arts stories of interest to readers. Sometimes there will be one story, sometimes there will be several. Get in tune now, and have a masterpiece of a day. And now, in no particular order...


ICYMI... Monday, our partner South Arts awarded the 2020 Southern Prize to North Carolina's Sherill Roland. A multidisciplinary artist from Morrisville, Roland received the $25,000 prize and a two-week residency at The Hambidge Center for Creative Arts and Sciences. Chareston's Kristi Ryba was South Carolina's finalist for the prize. We hear... SOBA Art Gallery in Old Town Bluffton will be open for business at 11 a.m. Thursday, May 21. The gallery will have limited hours and other restrictions, as you might expect. The public is invited to a grand reopening set for 11 a.m. May 21 at the gallery, located at 6 Church St. SOBA artists will work on paintings from the gallery’s porch. A virtual tour of the gallery, showcasing the latest art on exhibit, will take place 11 a.m. May 28 from SOBA’s Facebook page, https://www.facebook.com/sobabluffton/. More at SobaGallery.com.

Jason Rapp

Tuning Up: The show goes on(line) for Inman Theatre + new artist relief

Good morning!  "Tuning Up" is a morning post series where The Hub delivers curated, quick-hit arts stories of interest to readers. Sometimes there will be one story, sometimes there will be several. Get in tune now, and have a masterpiece of a day. And now, in no particular order...


Technology keeps show going for Inman Theatre. "Just because we all have to stay home doesn't mean we can’t still perform!" With that Facebook post, Inman Theatre, Inc. launched an exciting new venture that's catching attention in the Upstate: weekly online video performances. Follow them on Facebook to watch. Two quick, noteworthy artist relief updates:
  • Jazz Road Quick Assist Fund (South Arts)
    $1,000 grants to jazz artists who have lost significant income due to COVID-19. Applications are now open, and will close once funds are depleted. Artists are encouraged to apply as soon as possible: https://jazzroad.southarts.org/quick-assist-fund/
  • Harpo Foundation The Chicago-based Harpo Foundation is inviting applications for its Visual Artists Grants program. Through this program, grants of up to $10,000 will provide direct support to under-recognized visual artists age 21 or older. There is a $15 application fee. Application deadline, May 1, 2020.
These are listed among many others on the S.C. Arts Commission's COVID-19 response page.

Jason Rapp

Tuning Up: Emerging Leaders of Color + CARES Act grants

Good morning!  "Tuning Up" is a morning post series where The Hub delivers curated, quick-hit arts stories of interest to readers. Sometimes there will be one story, sometimes there will be several. Get in tune now, and have a masterpiece of a day. And now, in no particular order...


BREAKING

As The Hub was compiling this update, guidelines for the National Endowment for the Arts' CARES Act grants were released. The South Carolina Arts Commission is reviewing the guidelines and developing a grant program. (If you weren't aware, 40 percent of the NEA's $75 million relief funding is designated to state arts agencies to use for grants.) We will announce details as soon as possible.
Remember this? Like so many other things disrupted by the pandemic, South Arts is extending the April 17 deadline for Emerging Leaders of Color program applications indefinitely. Details on timing will be announced when they are available. Here's a quick refresher on ELC (South Arts link):

To promote representative leadership and equity in the arts, 11 to 13 cultural workers and arts administrators located in seven states in the southern region will be selected for this partnership program between South Arts and our colleague Regional Arts Organization WESTAF (Western States Arts Federation). Building on the success of WESTAF’s ELC program which has been attracting, training, networking and promoting a new generation of diverse arts leaders since 2010, the South Arts program will serve to advance Southern vitality through the arts through leadership development.

Here are a couple updates on other South Arts grants:
  • Jazz Road Tours: Applications due April 21, 2020 Note: In addition to the April 21 deadline, in the coming weeks Jazz Road Tours will begin accepting rolling applications so artists can submit on their own schedule. Details will be announced when they are available. Jazz artists from anywhere in the US can apply for funds to build tours that include three to six sites, with an emphasis on reaching rural, isolated, and underserved communities in combination with dates at more traditional venues. Grants of up to $15,000 are available to support tours taking place between August 15, 2020 and August 14, 2021.
  • Literary Arts Touring Grants: Applications due May 1, 2020 Literary Arts Touring grants support presenting organizations for engagements by guest Southern writers (fiction, creative nonfiction, and poetry) from outside the presenter’s state. These touring funds support publicly accessible readings and educational activities that provide opportunities for people to participate in the arts. Grants of up to $2,500 are available for projects taking place between July 1, 2020 and June 30, 2021.

Submitted material

Kristi Ryba named S.C.’s South Arts State Fellow

South Arts awarding more than $160,000 to 18 artists


South Arts, the nonprofit regional arts service organization advancing Southern vitality through the arts, announces the recipients of two fellowship programs.

Southern PrizeNine visual artists (one per state from its nine-state service area) will each receive a $5,000 State Fellowship; additionally, they are now in competition for the $25,000 Southern Prize with a residency at The Hambidge Center for Creative Arts and Sciences as well as the $10,000 Southern Prize Finalist awards.

The other 2020 State Fellowship recipients are:

  • Carlton Nell. Drawing. Opelika, Alabama.
  • Alba Triana. Experimental. Miami, Florida.
  • Fahamu Pecou. Painting. Decatur, Georgia.
  • Letitia Quesenberry. Multidisciplinary. Louisville, Kentucky.
  • Karen Ocker. Painting. New Orleans, Louisiana.
  • Ashleigh Coleman. Photography. Jackson, Mississippi.
  • Sherrill Roland. Multidisciplinary. Morrisville, North Carolina.
  • Bill Steber. Photography. Murfreesboro, Tennessee.

Additionally, another nine traditional artists and culture-bearers from Central Appalachian counties in KY, NC, and TN will each receive $9,000 Folk & Traditional Arts Master Artist Fellowships to continue their lifelong learning and practice. The 2020 Folk & Traditional Arts Master Artist Fellowship recipients are:

  • Roger Cooper. Old-time music. Garrison, Kentucky.
  • Charlene Long. Willow & honeysuckle basket making. Upton, Kentucky.
  • Octavia Sexton. Storytelling. Orlando, Kentucky.
  • Janet Calhoun. Pottery. Lenoir, North Carolina.
  • Susan Leveille. Handweaving. Webster, North Carolina.
  • Bobby McMillon. Ballad singing. Burnsville, North Carolina.
  • Meredith Goins. Violin luthiery. Dunlap, Tennessee.
  • Jordan Hughett. Ballad singing. Winfield, Tennessee.
  • Mark Newberry. Chair-making. Red Boiling Springs, Tennessee.

“South Arts is immensely proud to support every one of these artists, craftspeople, and tradition-bearers,” says Susie Surkamer, executive director of South Arts and a former executive director of the South Carolina Arts Commission. “Especially as our country enters the economic disruption caused by COVID-19, artists are among those most vulnerable to losing income. Yet their creativity, work, and stories are what carry us forward and will be integral to rebuilding our communities.”


Applications were open for both fellowship programs in the fall of 2019. The State Fellowships application pool was reviewed by a panel of experts including Ndubuisi C. Ezeluomba of the New Orleans Museum of Art, Edward Hayes, Jr. of The McNay Art Museum, independent art historian and consultant David Houston, and Marilyn Zapf of the Center for Craft. The panel made their recommendations based on the artistic excellence of their work and inclusiveness of the diversity of the Southern region. The Folk & Traditional Art Master Artist Fellowship applications were reviewed by a panel including Native American potter and storyteller Beckee Garris, Zoe van Buren of the North Carolina Arts Council, Mark Brown of the Kentucky Arts Council, and Evangeline Mee of the Tennessee Arts Commission. The panel made their recommendations based on the artists’ history and mastery of their respective tradition as well as the proposed lifelong learning opportunity.

The nine State Fellowship recipients will be featured in an exhibition that is scheduled to open at the Bo Bartlett Center at Columbus State University in Columbus, Georgia in May 2020; due to the current closures of facilities, this date may be postponed. The announcement of which State Fellowship recipients will also be named as the Southern Prize winner and finalist will be announced at a ceremony surrounding the opening of this exhibition.

“I would like to thank each and every one of our donors and sponsors,” continues Surkamer. “Their support and investment in the arts, culture, and tradition of our region is vital even in the best of times, and their ongoing generosity is more important than ever before.”

To view the work by each of these fellowship recipients and read more about the artists and tradition-bearers, visit www.southarts.org.


About Kristi Ryba

[caption id="attachment_44630" align="aligncenter" width="600"]Kristi Ryba's Chapel Of Perpetual Adoration II Chapel Of Perpetual Adoration II ; 2018 ; Egg Tempera & 22k Gold leaf on panel ; 3 panels each 18.75 x 15.25[/caption]

Kristi Ryba enchants viewers with her narrative works as she combines the elaborate skill of handmade egg tempera painting with subjects that explore contemporary events and messages of morality. Museum visitors will experience the different stages of a painting; how the artist lays out the composition, prepares the painting supports, grinds the pigment, and applies gold leaf to envelop the final piece in regalia.

Kristi Ryba holds an MFA from Vermont College, Montpelier, Vermont and most recently won 2nd place in the esteemed annual visual art competition ArtFields (2018). The artist is represented by Corrigan Gallery in Charleston and is in numerous private collections including the Medical University of South Carolina.

Artist Statement

Over the last several years, my interest in the study of Medieval and Renaissance art has informed my work. This series of paintings is taken from images from centuries ago and serve as a vehicle to simplify an urgent message by providing the symbolic and instructional imagery to illustrate and illuminate the leadership crisis we are in. All the gold, elaborate surroundings and messages of morality and ethics corresponded with what is happening in our government; the gutting of our social safety net and health care, eliminating environmental protections, the lack of restraint in spending money on personal enrichment and pleasure and the build-up of military spending and deficit in international diplomacy to name a few.

For more on the other 2020 State Fellows and the 2020 Folk & Traditional Arts Master Artist Fellowship recipients, please visit those links to content on SouthArts.org.

About South Arts

South Arts

South Arts advances Southern vitality through the arts. The nonprofit regional arts organization was founded in 1975 to build on the South’s unique heritage and enhance the public value of the arts. South Arts’ work responds to the arts environment and cultural trends with a regional perspective. South Arts offers an annual portfolio of activities designed to support the success of artists and arts providers in the South, address the needs of Southern communities through impactful arts-based programs, and celebrate the excellence, innovation, value and power of the arts of the South. For more information, visit www.southarts.org.

Jason Rapp

Let’s raise up South Carolina’s ‘Emerging Leaders of Color’

Promoting representative leadership + equity in the arts

Application deadline: Friday, April 17, 2020, 11:59 p.m. ET
Two regional arts organizations, the South Carolina Arts Commission's partner and collaborator South Arts and WESTAF (Western States Arts Federation), are selecting up to 13 participants for the southern pilot of WESTAF's Emerging Leaders of Color (ELC) program. South ArtsWESTAF's ELC program has shown success in "attracting, training, networking and promoting a new generation of diverse arts leaders since 2010," according to South Arts, who hope to bring that energy to the Deep South states of Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee. Selected individuals will participate in a 3-day, 2-night executive-level professional development and team-building workshop at no cost to themselves. The program is designed to: 
  • Build a cohort of cultural leaders of color in the southeastern U.S. who are committed to the advancement of the arts. 
  • Engage diverse emerging leaders in coursework and activities designed to strengthen competencies and prepare participants for leadership positions in the field. 
  • Provide opportunities for promising arts professionals to establish networks that support their careers and the cultural interests of the communities they represent and serve. 
  • Deepen participants’ understanding of the arts in the United States and how public support sustains the vibrancy of the sector.   
The intensive development and team-building sessions will take place* July 8-10, 2020 in Atlanta.

So who makes a good candidate?

Self-identified leaders of color residing in one of the seven states listed above with fewer than 10 years of experience working in the arts who are also (most likely, but with exceptions) younger than 35. Good candidates can be employed as a cultural worker, arts/cultural programs administrator or be a significantly arts-interested community member such as a volunteer or a public official (the program is not designed to serve individual artists). They also must not have had an opportunity to participate in high-quality professional development sessions.  The application, found at this link, must be submitted through Formstack. The deadline is Friday, April 17. Applicants will be asked for your contact information, and a written/audio/video (your choice) response to this prompt: #InequalityIsJeff Chang on race, culture, and inequality. Applicants are also required to upload a letter of endorsement from a colleague as a PDF.  For more information about the Emerging Leaders of Color Program, contact Mollie Quinlan-Hayes with South Arts, mquinlanhayes@southarts.org, 404.874.7244 x 31, or Chrissy Deal with WESTAF, chrissy.deal@westaf.org, 303.629.1166. * Until further notice, of course.
The South Carolina Arts Commission is proud to further its own efforts to increase diversity, equity, and inclusion by spreading the word about the ELC program in South Carolina to enrich the applicant pool and, we hope, get at least one South Carolinian among the southern cohort.