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Fine arts faculty members awarded prestigious Rubys Artist Project Grants

Amanda Burnham

Amanda Burnham

Two members of  TU’s  College of Fine Arts and Communication faculty have been selected to receive 2014 Rubys Artist Project Grants from the Greater Baltimore Cultural Alliance (GBCA). A jury panel composed of 10 noted professionals chose this year’s grantees in the literary and visual arts.

The projects, to be developed over the next 12 months, are to begin immediately if they are not already underway. Each includes opportunities for public engagement such as an exhibition, reading or panel discussion.

Associate Professor Amanda Burnham, Department of Art + Design, Art History, Art Education, received a $10,000 grant for her project, RFP, a “living drawing” installation and subsequent art book that will be designed in dialogue with Baltimoreans’ responses when asked to describe their visions, ambitions and ideas for the city’s future. Burnham’s drawings and installations reflect her fascination with cities and organisms.

Burnham’s work has been exhibited widely; selected venues include the Delaware Center for Contemporary Art, the Aldrich Museum of Art, and the Urban Institute of Contemporary Art. She has received Individual Artist Awards from the Maryland State Arts Council and has been invited to be an Artist in Residence at the Embassy of Foreign Artists (Geneva, Switzerland). She was also a Sondheim Award finalist.

Lola Pierson

Lola Pierson

Adjunct faculty member Lola Pierson, Department of Theatre Arts, received a $5,749 grant to support “A Day by Yourself,” a collection of 12 short stories that embrace action, tone and other theatrical elements as expressed through language. The structure of the work will be cumulative rather than relying on a linear narrative, and will present a series of literary snapshots, constructing a whole that is more than the sum of its parts.

Pierson, who earned an M.F.A. in theatre from TU, is a writer, playwright and director. She is a co-founding artistic director of The Acme Corporation.

GBCA established the Rubys Artist Project Grants program in 2013 to support the local creative community of performing visual, media and literary artists. Created with the vision and initial funding from the Robert W. Deutsch Foundation, the Rubys provide meaningful support directly to artists. The name was inspired in part by Ruby Lerner, the visionary founder and leader of Creative Capital in New York City.

“All of the artists selected reflect the Baltimore region’s rich creative reputation,” says Jeannie Howe, GBCA’s executive director. “We can’t wait to see the final manuscripts and artwork as well as experience the impact of the Rubys on the artists and the community.”


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