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McKnight honors artists selected for fellowships and residencies in 30th year of fellowships program

October 29, 2012 — The McKnight Foundation will honor 45 artists and ensembles selected for 2012-2013 McKnight artist fellowships and residencies at a private reception this month.

McKnight provides fellowships of $25,000 per year to selected Minnesota artists in 12 disciplines. The program also supports national artists in residence in ceramics, playwrighting, and music composition.

“Since 1981, McKnight has channeled a portion of all arts funding to support the work and the lives of Minnesota’s individual artists,” said board chair Ted Staryk. “In three decades, more than 1,500 McKnight Artist Fellowships have helped artists to explore new directions and to restore their spirits. I am delighted to welcome our 2012 honorees into this amazing community of artist fellows.”

To honor the legacy of Minnesota’s individual artists throughout 2012, McKnight has engaged with dozens of creative partners on several projects. With 30 years of McKnight Artist Fellows as a backdrop, each element illustrates the contributions of artists to Minnesota’s cultural life.

Early in the year, McKnight launched the State of the Artist blog (, a site dedicated to “conversations about, among, around, between, by, for, and with artists.” The blog includes guest posts by regional and national thought leaders and critics, as well as a video documentary series by Twin Cities-based public art and design studio Works Progress.

In June, McKnight invited all artist fellows since the program’s creation to join us for an evening of site-specific visual and performance works commissioned of former fellows. Hundreds took us up on the offer, and all were treated to remarks by National Endowment for the Arts Chair Rocco Landesman and nationally renowned storyteller Kevin Kling. A slideshow commemorating the event is online at

In September, McKnight launched a companion website at — an interactive database of graphically rendered interpretations of artists’ careers, designed by data visualization studio Pitch Interactive. Colorful diagrams offer a visual reinterpretation of each artist’s career, pulling data from individual résumés and professional histories. This month in McKnight’s own lobby gallery, the virtual visualizations get new life in our physical world, in a curated arts exhibition with annotations connecting the charts to the individual artists they represent. The “Data of the Artist” exhibition opens in McKnight’s Cynthia Binger Boynton Gallery on November 2.

The overarching goal of McKnight’s arts program is to support an environment in which artists are valued leaders in our community, with access to the resources and opportunities they need to succeed. Including this year’s awards, the Foundation has funded more than 1,500 artist fellowships since 1982. McKnight currently gives about $1.7 million per year to support fellowship programs run by nonprofit arts organizations representing 12 different media.

The 2012 McKnight Artist Fellowships were administered by the American Composers Forum (composers), IFP Minnesota (screenwriters and filmmakers), the Loft (writers), MacPhail Center for Music (performing musicians), Minneapolis College of Art and Design (visual artists), (photographers), Northern Clay Center (ceramic artists), Northrop Concerts and Lectures at the University of Minnesota (choreographers and dancers), and Playwrights’ Center (playwrights and theater artists).

A complete list of fellows and national artists-in-residence follows.

The McKnight Foundation seeks to improve the quality of life for present and future generations through grantmaking, collaboration, and encouragement of strategic policy reform. Founded in 1953 and independently endowed by William and Maude McKnight, the Minnesota-based family foundation had assets of approximately $1.9 billion and granted about $91 million in 2011. Of this total, about 10 percent went to the Foundation’s overarching arts goal to support an environment in which artists are valued leaders in our community, with access to the resources and opportunities they need to succeed. Learn more at, and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.


Fellowships: Brian Boldon, Minneapolis; Ursula Hargens, Minneapolis
Residencies: Pattie Chalmers, Carbondale, IL; Haejung Lee, Baton Rouge, LA; Nicky Renshaw, Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Fellowships: Ananya Chatterjea, Minneapolis; Carl Flink, Minneapolis; Ranee Ramaswamy, Minneapolis; Aparna Ramaswamy, Minneapolis
Residency: Johan Amselem, Paris, France

Fellowships: Vivienne Corringham, Minneapolis; Christopher Danforth, Minneapolis; Douglas Ewart, Minneapolis; Charles Peck, Cincinnati, OH
Residencies: Hugh Livingston, Oakland, CA; Steve Tibbetts, Mendota Heights

Fellowships: Taryn Griggs, Minneapolis; Ashwini Ramaswamy, Minneapolis; Stephen Schroeder, Nowthen, MN

Fellowships: Stephen Gurewitz, Golden Valley; Norah Shapiro, Minneapolis

Fellowships: Christopher Atzinger, Dundas; Gao Hong, Northfield; Laura MacKenzie, Northfield; Karen Mueller, Minneapolis

Fellowships: Jenn Ackerman, Minneapolis; Teri Fullerton, Minneapolis; Jason Pearson, Stewartville; Katherine Turczan, Minneapolis

Fellowships: Christina Ham, Minneapolis; Cory Hinkle, Minneapolis
Residency: Betty Shamieh, New York, NY

Fellowships: Melissa Brandt, Rochester; Matt Stenerson, Minneapolis

Fellowships: Sarah Agnew, St. Paul; Christopher Lutter-Gardella, Minneapolis; Michael Wangen, Minneapolis

Fellowships: Jim Denomie, Shafer; Chris Larson, St. Paul; Ruben Nusz, St. Paul; Natasha Pestich, Minneapolis

Fellowships: Mark Conway, Avon; Amy McCann, Minneapolis; Jude Nutter, St. Paul; Matt Rasmussen, Robbinsdale; Lauren Stringer, Minneapolis