For the second year in a row, MAC’s regional partner South Arts is accepting entries for the Southern Prize and State Fellowships, offering nine individual artists cash awards of up to $30,000; the contest is open to visual artists living across the southern states. Last year, Mississippi fiber artist Coulter Fussell was named finalist for the Southern Prize. MAC encourages Mississippi artists to replicate her success this year.
South Arts State Fellowships; $5,000
The South Arts State Fellowship is a state-specific prize awarded to the artists whose work reflects the best of the visual arts in the South. Nine artists will be awarded a $5,000 South Arts State Fellowship, and will compete for one of the two South Arts Prizes.
South Arts Southern Prize; $25,000 and $10,000
The nine State Fellowship recipients will compete for the South Arts Southern Prize. The $25,000 Southern Prize will be awarded to the artist whose work exhibits the highest artistic excellence, and one finalist will be awarded a $10,000 Prize, also based on artistic excellence. The Southern Prize winner will also receive a two-week residency at The Hambidge Center for the Creative Arts and Sciences. A national panel will convene to evaluate the body of work represented by the nine State Fellowship recipients and select the Prize winner and Finalist.
Coulter Fussell – 2017 finalist for the South Arts’ Southern Prize and the recipient of the South Arts Mississippi Fellowship – is a textile artist and painter from Water Valley. In an effort to share her story and encourage other Mississippi visual artists to apply for this exceptional opportunity, Fussell has this to say:
“I truly cannot explain how much winning this prize has meant for me, because I am still processing its effects. So much has changed for me because of this opportunity, but perhaps most importantly, it has been the semi-comfort that a chunk of money brings, making it easier to focus on your real work. So, the point is this: APPLY! DO IT! The prize is based on artistic excellence alone – nothing else. I applied as a non-academic quilter/waitress from Nowhere, Mississippi on the very last day for application submissions while waiting in the carpool line at my kids’ school. Just because of how you live or if you’re from an unrecognized place doesn’t mean you can’t compete in a big way. APPLY TODAY!”
Previous winners have used their awards to purchase materials to create new work, enroll in residency programs, and secure studio space. The funds are unrestricted, so the winning artists can spend the awards on whatever they may need.
Artists may apply for the Southern Prize until December 15, 2017 through South Arts’ website, http://www.southarts.org/. Artists specializing in crafts, drawing, experimental, painting, photography, sculpture, mixed media, and multidisciplinary styles are eligible.