Prairie Lakes Regional Arts Council Announces Grants

    July 18th, 2020

    Artist Grants totaling $52,500 were Awarded to 35 Artists from the Area

    Fourteen Blue Earth County Artists Awarded $21,000 In Artist Grants

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    The Prairie Lakes Regional Arts Council is pleased to announce that $52,500 in Artist Development Grants have been awarded to thirty-five local artists at $1,500 each, announces Brenda Byron, PLRAC Executive Director. The purpose of the PLRAC/McKnight Artist Grant Program is to provide financial support to artists committed to advancing their work and careers. Applications are accepted from artists in all art disciplines including: dance, literature, media arts, music, theater, and visual art. This program is made possible by funds provided by the McKnight Foundation of Minneapolis under a program designed and administered by the Prairie Lakes Regional Arts Council, Waseca.

    “We are excited that these thirty-five artists will be creating new works in a variety of media” noted Byron. The grantees include twenty-four visual artists, five literary artists, and six musicians. We hope that other artists will be inspired and plan to apply for a future grant from Prairie Lakes. The next deadline for an Artist Grant is July 2021. Grant program information is available at www.plrac.org. Below is a list of Blue Earth County Artists and their projects.

    Fourteen Blue Earth County artists were funded, and they include: Tom David Barna, Eagle Lake. Tom is a playwright and will use the grant to create two new full-length plays and conduct readings and workshops with the plays. Funds will be used for actor stipends, venue rent, and creative time. Robert Dickinson, Mankato. Robert is a visual artist and will use the grant to create three mixed media portrait paintings on self-constructed canvases. He will record parts of the creative process to upload on social media. Funds will be used for art supplies, social media advertising, studio space rent, and creative time. Robert Foster, Mankato. Robert is a visual artist and will use the grant to take reference photos of wooded areas around Mankato and create ink and colored pencil drawings from the photos on raw edged cross cuts of wood. Funds will be used to purchase a digital camera and art supplies. Beth Hamilton, Mankato. Beth is a visual artist and will use the grant to create six mixed-media portraits. Funds will be used to purchase art supplies, to hold a local exhibit, and for creative time. David Hamlow, Good Thunder. David is a visual artist and will use the grant to create two projects. He will create an online group project, “Corona Tessellations”, a photographic collage created through Instagram. He will also continue “Stylefarmer Quarantine Residency”, a series of daily sculptures, collages and paper works. Funds will be used for art supplies and creative time. Caitlin Heyer, Mankato. Caitlin is a fiber artist and will use the grant to create a pattern, and then weave a blanket that includes a decorative border. She will also take private weaving lessons at the Weavers Guild of Minnesota. Funds will be used to purchase parts for her home loom, for lesson fees and mileage, and for living expenses. Kaitlin Hohenstein, Mankato. Kaitlin is a freelance illustrator and will use the grant to purchase a new laptop computer, continue her subscriptions to Google Drive, and hire a web designer to update her online portfolio. Sarah Houle, Mankato. Sarah is a musician and will use the grant to create multi-track recordings, upload them to YouTube, and create a website to gain an online presence. Funds will be used to pay five musicians to record selected parts for multi-track video content and for creative time. Gina Moorhead, Mankato. Gina is a fiber artist and has a fashion and apparel design brand, “Gina Marie”. She will use the grant to create a new website, to create a video to be used on the website, and to create new company logo labels for a variety of products. Amber Rahe, Mankato. Amber is a visual artist and will use the grant to create a body of work using the process of pouring ink on Yupo paper, manipulating it with rubbing alcohol, and then painting intricate subject matter into the abstract environment of the pour. She will expand the work to larger surfaces and begin to use other mediums. Funds will be used for supplies, to hire a graphic designer to help update her website and online store, and for creative time. Michelle Roche, Mankato. Michelle is a musician and will use the grant to record and release ten original piano/vocal songs with full band instrumentation. She will also create a video for each song to upload to YouTube. Funds will be used for living expenses. Colin Scharf, Mankato. Colin is a musician and will use the grant to self-produce his first solo album of original songs. Funds will be used to purchase recording equipment and for two months of studio rent. Megan Schnitker, Mankato. Megan is a Native American visual artist and will use the grant to create a syllabus for future art class projects. The twelve-class schedule will have adaptations for in-person and virtual classrooms, art forms, life skills, and cultural history teachings. Funds will be used to purchase a printer, and for creative time and living expenses. Gregory Wilkins, Mankato. Gregory is a visual artist and will use the grant for creating an artist website and to create work for his upcoming exhibit at the Minneapolis/St. Paul International Airport in Concourse C, Jan.-Dec. 2021. Funds will be used for the website domain and monthly cost, studio rent, living expenses, and creative time.

    Other grantees in the region include: Brown County: Andrea Gehrke and Pegeen Rozeske from New Ulm. Faribault County: Yvonne Cory from Easton. LeSueur County: Elizabeth Breaker and Debra Evans-Paige from LeSueur, Ann Obernolte and Mary Walchuk from Elysian, and Patricia Salmon from Waterville. Nicollet County: Betsy Byers, Cheryl Casteen, Jill Hildegrandt, Deanna Larsen-Quinn, April Malphurs, and Dana Melius from St. Peter; and Justin Ek, Benji Inniger, and Dana Sikkila from North Mankato. Sibley County: Teresa Konechne from Henderson. Waseca County: Karen Krause from New Richland, and Joellen Preston and Robin Warburton from Janesville.

    Prairie Lakes provides grants for arts activities including dance, literature, media arts, music, theater, and visual art. The next Small Arts grant deadline for $2,000 for community arts projects or School Residencies is August 1. The next Arts and Cultural Heritage grant deadline for arts organizations is September 1, 2020 for a $6,000 or $4,000 grant. The next $300 Youth Scholarship deadline for students in grades 7-12 is October 1 and the $200 Youth Scholarship deadline for students in grades 3-6 is November 1, 2020. Grant program information and a link to the online applications are available at www.plrac.org or contact Brenda Byron, Executive Director, at the PLRAC office in Waseca, 1-800–298-1254 or plrac@hickorytech.net for information. The PLRAC serves a nine-county area in south central Minnesota.