Native Arts and Cultures Foundation Announces 2018 National Artist Fellowship Awards

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20 contemporary and traditional Native Artists were honored by the Native Arts and Cultures Foundation with Fellowships in Literature, Visual Arts, Music, Traditional Arts and Artistic Innovation. These highly competitive awards include $20,000 in unrestricted funds intended to support the artists so that they may explore, develop and experiment in their arts practices.

2018 National Artist Fellows

Our mission is to act as a catalyst to uplift Native artists and culture bearers in the important work they are doing across the nation.

20 Native artists representing five artistic disciplines have been honored by the Native Arts and Cultures Foundation (NACF) with National Artist Fellowships, following a national open call of American Indian, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian artist applicants who were reviewed by a panel of art peers and professionals.

The 20 awardees reside in 12 states: Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Minnesota, Montana, North Dakota, Oregon, and Washington.

“We are so pleased to honor so many Native artists in both the contemporary and traditional art forms this year. This is the most that we have offered in awards. The increase exemplifies a farther reach for us into new states and tribes, as we are always trying to reach as many artists and tribes as we can for this National award. The honor is always ours to work with such a prestigious group of artists each time,” says Native Arts and Cultures Foundation Director of Programs Francene Blythe, Diné/Sisseton-Wahpeton/Eastern Band Cherokee.

The Native Arts and Cultures Foundation National Artist Fellowship includes an unrestricted monetary award of $20,000 that provides support for Native artists to explore, develop and experiment with original and existing projects. Fellows also work with their communities and share their culture in numerous ways. Fellowships are made possible with additional support from the Ford Foundation, the Second Sister Foundation, the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, and the philanthropy of arts patrons nationwide.

2018 National Artist Fellows:

Artistic Innovation:
Anthony Hudson, Grand Ronde
Bently Spang, Tsitsistas/Suhtai (Northern Cheyenne)
Ciara Leina`ala Lacy, Kanaka Maoli
Frank Waln, Sicangu Lakota

Elizabeth Woody, Navajo/Warm Springs/Wasco /Yakama, and an enrolled member of the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs
Heid E. Erdrich, Ojibwe/Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa
Luci Tapahonso, Diné (Navajo)
Michael Wasson, Nez Perce (Nimíipuu)

Visual Arts:
Brian Adams, Iñupiaq
Courtney M. Leonard, Shinnecock
Jim Denomie, Ojibwe
Linda Infante Lyons, Alutiiq
RYAN! Feddersen, Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation (Okanogan and Arrow Lakes)

Allison Akootchook Warden, Iñupiaq, Native Village of Kaktovik
Cary Morin, Crow
Jeff Peterson, Native Hawaiian
Kalani Pe'a, Native Hawaiian

Traditional Arts:
Marques Hanalei Marzan, Native Hawaiian
Melissa S. Cody, Navajo/Diné
Pōhaku Kaho`ohanohano, Native Hawaiian

The Native Arts and Cultures Foundation’s mission is to promote the revitalization, appreciation and perpetuation of American Indian, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian arts and cultures through grant making, convening, and advocacy. To date, NACF has supported over 200 artists and organizations in more than 30 states and Native communities. To learn more about the National Artist Fellows and the Foundation’s work, visit

Media Contact:
Rupert Ayton

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Elizabeth Madrigal
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