Kelli Jo Ford, who graduated Magna Cum Laude with an MFA in English and writing from George Mason University, is known for engaging her readers with her story telling, character portrayals and flair for the dramatic.
Powering artistic growth and magnifying the Native voice
Native Arts and Cultures Foundation Artist Fellows represent the cultural continuity of Native peoples in contemporary contexts, and are the creative voices of their communities. Their art brings greater visibility to the realities of their communities, addressing Native identity issues, and sharing the stories of hope, change, and inspiration.
At its heart, the Artist Fellowship initiative is built around the fact that in order for any artist to succeed creatively, they need time, space, and financial support to cultivate their creative process, improve their craft, explore new concepts and, for some, take risks that they might not have had the capacity to take otherwise. Native artists in particular struggle with a lack of equal opportunity in the arts and culture sector, reflected in the mere 0.2% of all national arts funding which reaches them each year. By offering Fellowships, the Native Arts and Cultures Foundation proactively strengthens the ecosystem of support for Native artists, enabling them to generate more artistic work, live sustainable lives, and contribute to their communities.
- Power the artistic growth and magnify the voices of Native artists through the development of new works or completing projects in motion
- Increase recognition and visibility for Native artists in national and international arenas
How the Initiative Works
Following a national open call for applicants, Artist Fellows are selected by a rigorous process mediated by Native Arts and Cultures Foundation staff, and led by discipline-specific volunteer panel reviewers.
Congratulations to the sixteen talented artists awarded National Artist Fellowships in 2016:
The Native Arts and Cultures Foundation (NACF) awarded 2016 NACF National Artist Fellowships to sixteen artists in traditional arts, visual arts, Artistic Innovation, Literature, and Music.
The awarded artists come from the states of Alaska, California, Connecticut, Georgia, Hawai’i, Maine, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Mexico, New York, Oklahoma, Oregon, Virginia, and Washington.
The National Artist Fellowships are made possible with support from the Ford Foundation, Second Sister Foundation and the generosity of arts patrons.