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C.O.L.A. 2009 Fellowships Showcase Exceptional Mid-Career Artists in Los Angeles
February 21, 2009, 11:26 pm
Filed under: art, urban development | Tags: , , , , ,

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Announcing the 2009 C.O.L.A. Individual Artist Fellowships recognizing outstanding creative accomplishment for mid-career artists in Los Angeles. Exhibitions, performances and readings accompany these awards, beginning in early May. Read on for complete press release.

For complete details and artist information, images and video, visit the C.O.L.A. artists’ press page


Visual Arts Exhibition Dates: May 14 to July 12, Municipal Art Gallery
Exhibition Opening Reception: May 17, 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m., Municipal Art Gallery
Performance Schedule: June 19 & 20, 8:00 p.m., Grand Performances

Los Angeles – The City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA) has awarded its 2009 City of Los Angeles (C.O.L.A.) Individual Artist Fellowships to fifteen exemplary mid-career artists.  The professional and artistic caliber of these 15 Fellows is the reason why C.O.L.A. is a nationally recognized program.  Los Angeles is one of a handful of municipalities honoring local artists with grant contracts to create and present new works for the public.

DCA’s commitment to supporting the local creative economy, while selecting artists who have demonstrated extraordinary talent, is one of the many reasons why the C.O.L.A. Fellowship Program so significant.  As Olga Garay, DCA’s Executive Director, points out:  “Municipal support for solo artists is critically important.  Living or working among us, these engaging entrepreneurs symbolize our community’s dedication to linking ideas with innovations.  Through their work, we are able to claim that Los Angeles is one of the most vibrant creative economies in the world.”

The 2009 C.O.L.A. award recipients in the visual arts are: Natalie Bookchin, Jane Castillo, Joe Davidson, David DiMichele, Bia Gayotto, Willie Robert Middlebrook, Jr., Maureen Selwood, Eloy Torrez, and Shirley Tse.

The 2009 C.O.L.A. award recipients in the literary arts are: Gloria Enedina Alvarez and Bruce Bauman.

The 2009 C.O.L.A. award recipients in the performing arts are: Alejandra Flores, Lionel Popkin, Houman Pourmehdi, and Cheng-Chieh Yu.

Each Fellow is peer-reviewed in a non-thematic selection process and is granted $10,000.  Grants are awarded on a competitive basis to bring the highest quality artistic and cultural services to Los Angeles residents and visitors.  Joe Smoke, DCA Cultural Grant Program Director, notes that, “The C.O.L.A. Program reinvigorates interest in Los Angeles as a creative place to live, work, or visit.”

The C.O.L.A. Individual Artists Fellowships are awarded to honor a spectrum of the City’s most creative artists who dedicate themselves to an ongoing body of excellent work, represent a relevant progression through their pieces or series, exemplify a generation of core ideas in their field, garner respect from their peers, and serve as role models for other artists.  Since 1990, DCA has awarded over 115 fellowships to outstanding mid-career artists for the conception, creation, production, and presentation of new works.

The 2009 C.O.L.A. Individual Artist Fellowships Exhibition is organized by Mark Steven Greenfield, Curator and Director of Exhibits at DCA’s Municipal Art Gallery at Barnsdall Park.  The exhibit opens Thursday, May 14, and remains on view through Sunday, July 12, 2009.  The Exhibition’s Opening Reception will be held on Sunday, May 17, from 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.  In addition, the Municipal Art Gallery will present Conversations with the Artists, a dialogue series with the nine visual arts Fellows.  Admission to all the events is free.

The 2009 C.O.L.A. Performances are co-sponsored and hosted by Grand Performances and include performance art pieces, music, and literary readings.  Two different performances will be offered on each of the following days: Friday, June 19 and Saturday, June 20 at 8:00 p.m.  Admission is free.

DCA commissions and publishes a C.O.L.A. catalogue and program website, which accompanies the exhibition and performance series.  Designed by previous C.O.L.A. fellow and award winning graphic designer Louise Sanhaus, these documentary materials are viewed by international audiences and collected by cultural institutions.

DCA’s Cultural Grant Program was formed in 1981 as a response to the overwhelming need to support Los Angeles organizations and artists as key catalysts in the synergy of our society.  DCA’s granting process is community driven, and local art experts, educators, and community agents serve as peer panelists for the review of applications.  The makeup of these panels changes each year to ensure a fair and broad-minded selection of proposals.

About DCA:
The Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA) generates and supports high quality arts and cultural experiences for Los Angeles residents and visitors.  DCA advances the social and economic impact of the arts and assures access to arts and cultural experiences through grant making, marketing, public and community arts programming, arts education, and creating partnerships with artists and arts and cultural organizations in every community in the City of Los Angeles.

DCA grants $3.4 million annually to over 300 artists and nonprofit arts organizations and awards the Artist-in-Residence (A.I.R.) and City of Los Angeles (C.O.L.A.) Individual Artist Fellowships.  The Department provides arts and cultural programming in its numerous Neighborhood Arts and Cultural Centers, theaters, and historic sites, and manages several arts and education programs for young people.  It directs public art projects and manages the City’s Arts Development Fee and Percent for Arts Programs, and the Art Collection and Murals Programs.  DCA markets the City’s cultural events through development and collaboration with strategic partners, design and production of creative promotional materials, and management of the website.

About Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery:
The Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery is a facility of the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs and is located at 4800 Hollywood Boulevard, Los Angeles, 90027.  Admission is free.  The Gallery is open Thursdays through Sundays, 12:00 noon to 5:00 p.m.  Hours are extended to
9:00 p.m. on First Fridays.  For general information, the public may call 323.644.6269.

About Grand Performances:
Grand Performances is Southern California’s largest presenter of free performing arts programs and a landmark nonprofit arts institution established with a primary focus on bringing together the diverse peoples of Los Angeles.  Grand Performances is located at 300-350 South Grand Avenue, Los Angeles.

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