Creative Pinellas Announces Recipients of Professional Artist Grants and Artist Laureate

Artists from disciplines as wide ranging as dance, musical theatre and visual arts to literature and media arts were all recipients of the Creative Pinellas Impact Returns Professional Artist Grant, the organization announced today.

The program provides a grant to Pinellas County artists of outstanding talent and ability who bring recognition, awareness and interest to our community, inspire other artists and art lovers, and help make Pinellas County a vibrant arts and cultural community.

“It’s great to be able to offer a fourth year of this program with a track record of success,” said Barbara St. Clair, executive director for Creative Pinellas. “Artists who received grants from us in previous years are now mentors for our Emerging Artist grant and instructors for our Arts Insider Workshops. They also exhibited in our recent Arts Annual which was attended by art enthusiasts county and statewide. We are able to watch this program in real time and see how it functions as a mechanism to support artists in their professional career and as a means to build and sustain Pinellas County as a cultural destination.”

Individual artists receiving grants include: Stephen P. Brown (music performance), Carol Cleere (visual arts), Kate Helms (visual arts), Charlotte Johnson (dance), Victoria Jorgensen (media arts), Steve Kistulentz (literature), Gabriel Ramos (visual arts), Babs Reingold (visual arts) and Tom Sivak (musical theatre). Akiko Kotani (visual arts) was selected by the jury as the organization’s first Artist Laureate who will serve as a partner/collaborator with Creative Pinellas. Selected for the excellence of her work, her expertise as an arts educator, and her reputation throughout the arts community nation and worldwide, Kotani will share her talents to support the organization’s mission over the grant period.

“The quality of the 65 artists who applied is a strong indicator of the vitality of our arts and cultural community,” said Christopher Hubbard, programs manager for Creative Pinellas, “and part of what has driven us to introduce our new Artist Laureate program. We are looking forward to working with Kotani, our first ever Artist Laureate, and to exploring the new opportunities this program will allow us to discover.”

As part of their community outreach, grantees will be posting recurring blogs describing their progress and activities throughout the grant award period, which ends Sept. 13, 2019. Biographies of the artists who received awards and their individual blogs will be available at creativepinellas.org starting Feb. 15, 2019.

For more information about Creative Pinellas and its grant programs please visit creativepinellas.org/grants or contact Christopher Hubbard, programs manager, at christopher.hubbard@creativepinellas.org.

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CREATIVE PINELLAS ANNOUNCES RETURN OF EMERGING ARTIST GRANT SUPPORTING UP-AND-COMING PINELLAS COUNTY ARTISTS IN A VARIETY OF DISCIPLINES (LARGO, FL) – CREATIVE PINELLAS ANNOUNCES THE RETURN OF THEIR EMERGING ARTIST GRANT, DESIGNED TO ASSIST ARTISTS EARLY IN THEIR CAREER WITH THE TOOLS TO MAKE THE LEAP TO THEIR NEXT STEP AS PROFESSIONAL ARTISTS. THE PROGRAM PROVIDES GRANTEES WITH A FINANCIAL AWARD GEARED TOWARD THE PRODUCTION OF NEW WORK, LEADING TO AN EXHIBITION AT THE CLOSE OF THE GRANT AWARD PERIOD. “THIS GRANT PROGRAM REFLECTS OUR DESIRE AT CREATIVE PINELLAS TO RECOGNIZE THE POTENTIAL OF OUR COUNTY’S EMERGING ARTISTS AND SUPPORT THEM IN DEVELOPING THEIR CAREERS,” SAID CHRISTOPHER HUBBARD, PROGRAMS MANAGER FOR CREATIVE PINELLAS. “THE FEEDBACK WE’VE RECEIVED FROM PARTICIPATING ARTISTS WAS THAT THIS GRANT WAS A GAME-CHANGER FOR THEM IN MOVING THEIR WORK FORWARD. WE’VE COME TO RECOGNIZE THIS PROGRAM AS A VEHICLE FOR SUPPORTING AND SHOWCASING INNOVATIVE AND EXCITING WORK, CONTRIBUTING TO THE EXPANSION OF PINELLAS COUNTY’S STATUS AS A VIBRANT ARTS AND CULTURAL DESTINATION.” GRANTS WILL BE AWARDED FOR ORIGINAL WORK IN THE DISCIPLINES OF CHOREOGRAPHY, LITERATURE, MEDIA ARTS, MUSIC COMPOSITION, THEATER/MUSICAL THEATER, VISUAL ARTS AND INTERDISCIPLINARY ARTS. PROGRAM GUIDELINES AND ELIGIBILITY DETAILS, GRANT FAQS AND THE ONLINE APPLICATION WILL BE AVAILABLE AT CREATIVEPINELLAS.ORG STARTING JAN. 9, 2019. FUNDS FOR THE GRANT PROGRAM WILL BE AVAILABLE IN THE SPRING, FOR USE THROUGHOUT THE SUMMER, CULMINATING IN AN EXHIBITION OF THE GRANTEES’ NEW WORK AT THE GALLERY AT CREATIVE PINELLAS TENTATIVELY SET FOR SEPT. 12, 2019. CREATIVE PINELLAS WILL WORK TO PAIR RECIPIENTS WITH AN ARTIST MENTOR TO GUIDE THE GRANTEE THROUGH THEIR DEVELOPMENT AS A PROFESSIONAL ARTIST. THE ONLINE APPLICATION PERIOD OPENS ON JAN. 9, 2019, AND CLOSES ON FEB. 18, 2019, AT 11:59 PM (EASTERN). “WE HAVE AN AMAZING COMMUNITY OF EMERGING ARTISTS HERE IN PINELLAS COUNTY WHO ARE DRIVING A TREMENDOUS AMOUNT OF ARTISTIC AND CREATIVE ENERGY AND INNOVATION,” SAID BARBARA ST. CLAIR, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF CREATIVE PINELLAS. “BY COMBINING FINANCIAL SUPPORT, MENTORING AND AN OPPORTUNITY FOR AN EXHIBIT OR PERFORMANCE, WE BELIEVE THIS GRANT HITS THE SWEET SPOT FOR WHAT AN ARTS ORGANIZATION LIKE CREATIVE PINELLAS CAN DO TO SUPPORT INDIVIDUAL ARTISTS, TO ENCOURAGE AND SUSTAIN THE ARTS AND CULTURAL COMMUNITY, AND TO ENHANCE THE AUDIENCE EXPERIENCE FOR RESIDENTS AND VISITORS AS WELL.” OVER THE COURSE OF THE FUNDING PERIOD, RECIPIENTS WILL PROVIDE AN INSIGHT INTO THEIR CREATIVE PROCESSES FOR INTERESTED VISITORS THROUGH BLOGS POSTED AT CREATIVEPINELLAS.ORG. PAST AWARDEES HAVE WRITTEN ABOUT CURRENT PROJECTS, CRITIQUES ON WORK IN PROGRESS, REFLECTIONS ON LIFE AS AN ARTIST AND MORE. FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT CREATIVE PINELLAS AND ITS GRANT PROGRAMS AND TO APPLY, PLEASE VISIT CREATIVEPINELLAS.ORG/GRANTS OR CONTACT CHRISTOPHER HUBBARD, PROGRAMS MANAGER, AT CHRISTOPHER.HUBBARD@CREATIVEPINELLAS.ORG.

BY DANNY OLDA | NEWS RELEASES