The Fulcrum Fund Award has been in cycle at 516 Arts for the last seven years. In 2015, the Andy Warhol Foundation came to request 516 be a part of the Regional Re-Granting Program. Offering $60,000 a year to local artists 516 become part of 9 other organizations that receive funding. The Frederick Hammersley Foundation also contributed $30,000 to artists in this year’s awards. This year, eligibility for local artists was expanded to include the visual arts.
Artists propose ideas for projects and 516 invites jurors to select recipients. Jurors are composed of professors, curators as well as other artists from across the country. Each artist receives between $2,000-$10,000 depending on how much the artist is requesting. Claude Smith, 516 ARTS Fulcrum Funds Director says, “This year is what we would consider a return to normal operating.”
In the last 18 months artists were given 4 rounds of emergency relief funding. Smith recalls in 2020, 516 was going to announce the call for submissions for artists but instead was contacted by the Andy Warhol Foundation to consider offering emergency relief grants. Smaller grants in the amount of $1,000 were given to more artists in 2020. In total $321,000 was granted to over 300 artists that were impacted by the pandemic. Smith says, “It was a pretty amazing opportunity to be able to provide more day to day relief that is more tangible.” The Andy Warhol Foundation along with the Frederick Hammersley Foundation immediately helped distribute funds to cities and states, some of which did not have programming setup.
Over 100 artists applied this year for the Fulcrum Fun Award. Smith says, “It is good for this amount of submissions because it demonstrates that artists are getting back to what they would typically be doing [pre-pandemic].” This year some of the recipients included an alternative model by JC Gonzo that includes a self-published magazine highlighting art in the Southwest. Various artists also received funding for performance based art. Dylan McLaughlin is a sound artist who composes art ecology utilizing digital instruments. Farmington artists, Rosemary Meza-Des Plas also received funding for a performance which Smith says, “Centers around commodification versus authenticity and the perpetuation of that through a faux beauty competition for self identifying Latinos over 50.”
Many of this year’s submissions were self-reflective and expected of artists emerging from quarantine. With so many artists getting back to a new normal, we can expect to see unique exhibitions and displays from this year’s 13 recipients of the Fulcrum Award Fund.
Congratulations to the awardees!
Karl Orozco & Michael Lopez
Nayeli Navarro & Elsa Lopez
We Are Longing for a Future (a collective)