In 2020, the Cultural Council created the Artist Innovation Fellowship Program to honor and celebrate the artistic process and support the careers and artistic endeavors of Palm Beach County professional artists across all artistic disciplines.
The Artist Innovation Fellowship is unique among professional development opportunities as it focuses on personal creative growth and the belief that an entire community will benefit through investments in creative individuals. The program is designed to address the pursuit of innovation in either existing avenues of creative expression or through the pursuit of new ideas and projects without the constraints of budgets or specific project outcomes. Fellowship funds can be used for supplies, research, instruction, apprenticeships, travel, or other experiences to help recipients explore and expand their creative process.
Through a generous grant from the Leonard and Norma Klorfine Foundation, the Council awarded five $7,500 Artist Innovation Fellowships in its inaugural year: visual artists Anthony Burks, Sr., Amy Gross, and Isabel Gouveia; musician Joshua Lubben; and choreographer/dancer Donna Murray.
Leonard and Norma Klorfine are generous supporters of culture, education and medical research. Their family foundation, the Leonard and Norma Klorfine Foundation, founded in 1994, empowers nonprofits to achieve tangible results that benefit their communities. The Cultural Council is tremendously grateful for the Klorfines’ visionary support of the Artist Innovation Fellowship Program and COVID recovery initiatives, and for Leonard’s leadership as a member of our Board from 2019 to 2021.
Meet the 2020 Fellows
Funded by the Leonard and Norma Klorfine Foundation
“My stereoscopic photographs allow my artwork to do things that they cannot do in real life, that they could only do in my imagination. My sculptures are conglomerations of my encounters with living things, filtered through my experiences and recreated as invented plants and animals and fungi. I want them to seem alive but clearly not be, presented in clean white spaces like artifacts.
I have simultaneously wanted to create backstories for each, to imagine them in equally invented habitats, environments made up of bits and pieces of disparate elements. Through digitally altered photographs, a suburban park turns into a wilderness; a Frisbee golf course trail becomes the deep woods. Because I’ve been sensitized by a once-in-a-century pandemic, they now suggest the mutability of life, of symbiosis and the inevitability of transmission.
The fellowship has made it possible for me to finally have the time and resources to make real an idea I have been wanting to work on for years, and the ability to work with others to make it possible. It lets the project become a priority at last.”
“Natural Beauty/ONE LOVE are a duo series of works. Both series come from my personal connections to the individuals I come in contact from the communities I interact with…I have to feel that connection to be able to execute these portraits.
In my culture, the women are a representation of the queens in our world. I want to express that level of respect in this body of work. The ‘natural beauties’ are the queens and the ‘one loves’ are the kings. Almost every female expressed her favorite color to me so it can be incorporated into the work—I then researched a butterfly that possesses that color. The features of the women have been created in charcoal, expressing that each female figure is beautiful just the way they are.
The fellowship has allowed me to do some things that I’ve been talking about including framing my pictures. It has allowed me to take some risks, including opening up my own studio (in collaboration with Zero Empty Spaces). That was something I always dreamed about and wanted to do.”
“I first began making Landscape four years ago, after reading the collection of poems written by Lani Scozzari. I made Part I of the piece and then thought, if given the opportunity in the future, I would expand the work to include two more gender couplings. The full work was always meant to be Part I (female duet); Part II (male duet); and Part III (male/female duet) with music from The Chopin Project by Ólafur Arnalds and Alice Sara Ott accompanying the work. I am very pleased to collaborate with Dimensions Dance Theater of Miami and thank both artistic directors, Jennifer Kronenberg Guerra and Carlos Guerra, for joining me in the
This fellowship has remained a bright spot for me during the pandemic. I continue to be inspired to make this new work. [The fellowship] has also connected me with the Cultural Council and all of the wonderful arts leaders there, and introduced me to fellow grantees across disciplines.”
“My work and research have focused on the changing landscape, environmental awareness, and more recently, the effects of globalization and the human desire to control and transform our surroundings. I use a mix of abstraction and representation to symbolize mutations in the ever-shifting natural environment.
Within my desire to subvert automation and to create one-of-a-kind works, I inspect how my inkjet printer operates. Instead of pushing the ‘print’ button, I manipulate the printer’s controls in the act of printing to alter the result. The ‘misprints,’ though aesthetically beautiful, show the imperfections caused by a disruptive hand, creating a metaphor for humankind’s control of the environment.
Receiving this fellowship is very encouraging in many ways. It reinforces the direction of my artistic practice, validating my approaches and aesthetics. It has also encouraged me to try to realize my desire to be a full-time artist, which I believe can happen. I haven’t found a studio to rent yet…but that will be my next determination.”
“I honestly could not be more grateful for this fellowship. Not only has it kept my art alive through one of the most challenging years of my career, but it’s given me the opportunity to create and produce original projects that would’ve taken me years on my own.
I was able to film a professional video of “Dance for Love”, a song of mine with words by Civil War soldier William Straub. The video was filmed at a historic battle site in Riverbend Park (Jupiter) and was released on Veteran’s Day 2020 as a tribute to all who have served: past, present, and future. I never dreamed I’d be able to pour so much time and energy into my original content, but the fellowship has made all of this possible. Honestly, it’s an incredible feeling to give wings to the dreams I’ve had for so long, and finally get my art and message heard.”
Application & Selection Process
The Council offered free workshops in Belle Glade, Delray Beach, Jupiter and West Palm Beach to provide information on building successful applications, the program timeline, grant-writing tips and more. The Council received more than 80 applications from across Palm Beach County. Applications were evaluated according to: the quality of the applicant’s artistic work, the strength of their proposed fellowship activities and its relation to their work, and the intended impact on the applicant and his/her work.
Fellowships were awarded to applicants who demonstrated a sustained level of accomplishment, commitment and artistic excellence. A regional panel of discipline-specific creative professionals evaluated the applicants and submitted their selections to the Cultural Council’s board of directors for approval.
2020 Selection Panel
- Gregory Charleston – Communications professional, consultant and playwright, with over 30 years nonprofit and arts management experience. Currently administers marketing for Community Foundation of the Florida Keys.
- Emmanuella Dorcely – Modern/contemporary choreographer born in Boynton Beach; founder and artistic director of Nemma Productions.
- Juliana Forero – Independent arts professional currently working as a consulting curator of contemporary art for the City of Pompano Beach, where she coordinates art exhibitions for Bailey Contemporary Arts, Historic Ali Cultural Arts, and the Pompano Beach Cultural Center.
- Dr. Gregory Satterthwaite – Assistant professor and director of music business, church music and music technology programs at Southeastern University.
For current information about the Artist Innovation Fellowship Program, visit palmbeachculture.com/AIFP.