2017 Rasmuson Foundation Individual Artist Awards

Anchorage, AKRasmuson Foundation has named artist Gertrude Svarny of Unalaska its 2017 Distinguished Artist. The award recognizes one Alaska artist annually for a lifetime of creative excellence and contributions to arts and culture in the State. It is accompanied by a $40,000 award that she can use to further immerse herself in the exploration and development of her artistry.

To learn more about Gertrude Svarny and her work, visit the new, Individual Artists Awards web page at http://www.rasmuson.org/enjoy/2017-artists/. The website includes videos, artists’ work, and statements. You can also read the complete announcement about the 2017 Individual Artist Awards on the Rasmuson Foundation website at http://www.rasmuson.org/news/rasmuson-foundation-announces-2017-individual-artist-awards/.

Rasmuson Foundation also awarded nine fellowships ($18,000 each) and 25 project awards ($7,500 each) to 34 artists as part of its Individual Artists Awards program. A Fellowship is an unrestricted award for mid-career and mature artists to focus their energy and attention for a  one-year period on developing their creative work.

The Project Award is designed for emerging, mid-career and mature artists to be used on a specific, short-term project that has clear benefits to the artist’s growth and development. Awardees, who include poets, choreographers, writers, multi-disciplinary artists, carvers, composers, folk and traditional artists and performance artists, were chosen from 450 applicants, and represent 14 Alaskan communities. You can see samples of each artists work and videos that showcase their accomplishments on the Individual Artists Awards web page.

We encourage you to learn more about the accomplishments, work and plans of 2017 Distinguished Artist, Gerturde Svarny, and about the following 2017 Fellowship and Project Awardees.

Note: Literary artists in bold
2017 Fellowship Awardees
  • Earl F. Atchak of Chevak
  • Breezy Berryman of Homer
  • Beth Blankenship of Anchorage
  • Olena Kalytiak Davis of Anchorage
  • Erin Coughlin Hollowell of Homer
  • Tom Kizzia of Homer
  • Enzina Marrari of Anchorage
  • Maria Shell of Anchorage
  • Agnes Thompson of Anchorage
2017 Project Awardees
  • Carmel Anderson of Ketchikan
  • Everett Athorp of Klawock
  • Marian Call of Juneau
  • Alanna DeRocchi of Anchorage
  • Christy Tengs Fowler of Haines
  • Ellen Frankenstein of Sitka
  • Patt Garrett of McCarthy
  • Erin Gingrich of Anchorage
  • Lily Hope of Juneau
  • Gail Jackson of Anchorage
  • Wendy Langton of Fairbanks
  • Mary Loewen of Kodiak
  • Mangyepsa Gyipaayg (Kandi McGilton) of Metlakatla
  • Amy Meissner of Anchorage
  • Evan Phillips of Anchorage
  • Jessica Meadowlark Plachta of Haines
  • Sandy Stolle of Seward
  • Karen Stomberg of Fairbanks
  • Vanessa “Vee” Sweet of Shishmaref
  • Lily H. Tuzroyluke of Anchorage
  • Miranda Weiss of Homer
  • Merna Wharton of Fairbanks
  • Nathaniel Wilder of Anchorage
  • Hannah Yoter of Anchorage
  • Itzel Yarger-Zagal of Anchorage
About the Individual Artist Awards

In December 2003, the Rasmuson Foundation Board of Directors launched a multi-year initiative to  invest in Alaska‘s cultural and artistic community. The program awards grants to Alaskan artists to ensure the continuation of the state‘s vibrant and diverse arts and culture community.

In 14 years, the Individual Artist Awards program has made 444 grants totaling $4 million directly to Alaskan artists. The grants allow recipients to pursue a variety of creative avenues, and give them time to focus on their work, explore educational opportunities, and upgrade and purchase equipment to help them grow as artists.

About the Foundation
Jenny Rasmuson with her son, Elmer, created the Rasmuson Foundation in May 1955 to honor her late husband E.A. Rasmuson. The Foundation is a catalyst to promote a better life for all Alaskans.
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