For thousands of years, master Native artists have dedicated time, resources, and support to the next generation, passing on the skills, arts practice, and cultural understanding needed to perpetuate visual and traditional arts and lifeways.
Yet in today’s fast-paced and overloaded modern world, mentorships are threatened. While even the most established Native artist faces challenges, emerging artists are especially vulnerable: pressed for time, resources, and support, their ability to advance their skills and attain necessary knowledge is too often limited. The Native Arts and Cultures Foundation’s work with artists and communities has inspired us to develop and launch a new program to address this need.
The Mentor Fellowship program, launching in Fall 2016, will facilitate exchange of cultural knowledge and artistic skill between mentor and apprentice in both traditional and contemporary visual arts, while nurturing the passion and power of creative expression. Thanks to support from the Margaret A. Cargill Philanthropies, NACF will launch Mentor Fellowships in the following 10 states: Alaska, Oregon, Washington, Arizona, New Mexico, California, Minnesota, North and South Dakota, and Wisconsin.