ArtsMemphis, is pleased to offer six $5,000 ArtsAccelerator Grants in 2019 to visual artists living and working in Shelby County. The ArtsAccelerator Grants are incentive grants for visual artists who are at a critical juncture in their careers and are intended to deepen and expand artistic work to advance the grant recipient’s artistic accomplishments. The ArtsAccelerator Program supports artists working in any media, including painting, sculpture, drawing, photography, installation art, performance art, video art, or social practice.
The ArtsAccelerator Program enables ArtsMemphis to demonstrate the value of visual artists’ work to our region by supporting working artists in their artistic practice. We believe this program contributes to the vitality of our artistic community and helps Memphis attract and retain a vibrant creative class.
ArtsMemphis values inclusion and equity. When evaluating applications, judges will be instructed to consider historically underserved populations. Minimally two of the six ArtsAccelerator Grants, will be awarded to artists of color. Also, minimally one of the artists awarded a grant will be an emerging artist.
Sharon Havelka was born and raised in Memphis, TN and graduated with a BFA from Memphis College of Art in 1994. She has been continually producing art in multiple media, honing the skills of painting, quilting, bookmaking, and sculpture. She has also been an ICU RN for the past 10 years. As both an artist and a nurse, she combines the physiology of the human body and brain with the elements and meanings of art. For example, she conveys circulation with color, perfusion with light and dark values, and breath with composition and negative space. She mixes recycled materials with found objects, like her family’s old clothes with sidewalk treasures. She also uses egg yolk and matcha tea for paint, and coffee, black tea, or onion skin to stain. She creates forms that evoke both the imaginary and the biological fusing craft, science, and art.
Jed Jackson was born in Fayetteville Arkansas in 1954. A long time Professor of Painting at the University of Memphis, Jackson has been painting, exhibiting and teaching for more than 50 years. Paintings by Jed Jackson have been exhibited in New York, London, Rennes, France, Amsterdam, Chicago, St. Louis, Memphis and many other cities in America and Europe. During his creative career more than 15 fellowships and grants have been awarded to Jackson including the Arts/Midwest NEA in 1992 and The Tennessee Arts Council Individual Artists grant in 2006.
Chuck Johnson is currently the Adjunct Professor of Art at the University of Memphis and has taught at the Memphis College of Art, Rhodes College and Prince George's Community College in Largo, MD. He has exhibited his work in many exhibitions locally, nationally and abroad.
Lacy Mitcham Veteto
Lacy Mitcham is a 3D artist who received a Masters of Fine Arts in 2018 from University of Memphis. Her work is focused around the human body from a female perspective, representing it abstractly as an import-export system, using many materials to achieve this purpose including textiles, wood, metal, ceramic, and wire through methods of sculpture, wearable art, and installation. She is currently an adjunct professor at the University of Memphis in the Department of Art teaching foundations courses, the Fashion Merchandising department, and at Rhodes College Department of Art and Art History, teaching sculpture. Lacy is also an Emerging Artist with Young Arts Contemporary and an Emerging Designer for Memphis Fashion Design Network.
Aisha Raison is a filmmaker/photographer and poet who has used both skills as a multimedia artist and activist in the Memphis area. Raised in Ripley, Tennessee in the Spiller Hill neighborhood, she credits her parents for the exposure of Womanism, jazz and art at a young age: it was her father who taught her photography at 3 and her mother who gave her books and art outside of her small town. Since 2016, Aisha has merged her imagination, poetry and vision into award winning films such as Girls Like Me: a self/love story and Dancin' to the Blue Moon as well as using her skills as an activist photographer throughout the city of Memphis, a mentor with groups such as Hattiloo Theatre's Write On Speak Out and tour guide with Slavehaven Underground Railroad Museum.
Juan Rojo was born in Valladolid, Spain in 1977. He graduated from the University of Salamanca (Spain) with a degree in Fine Arts and he obtained his Masters degree in painting and video at the University of Maryland, College Park. He is represented in Spain by Rodrigo Juarranz Gallery and by Jay Etkin Gallery in the United States. He has exhibited extensively in the USA and Europe and he is currently living in Memphis, Tennessee.