2012/13 Jerome Foundation Fellowships for Emerging Artists

2012/13 Jerome Foundation Fellowships for Emerging Artists

Minneapolis—The Minneapolis College of Art and Design, in conjunction with the Jerome Foundation, is pleased to announce the five recipients of the 2012/13 Jerome Foundation Fellowships for Emerging Artists. They are Susannah Bielak, Amanda Hankerson, Michael Hoyt, Melissa Loop, and Lauren Roche, all of the Twin Cities. In addition to receiving $10,000 stipends, over the course of the year these artists have the opportunity to meet with three arts professionals, exhibit recent work in a culminating group show at the MCAD Gallery, and have a local art curator or critic write an essay about their work in a catalog that accompanies the exhibition.

Since 1981 the Jerome Foundation has generously funded these fellowships for emerging artists, which are designed to identify and support outstanding artists in the state of Minnesota at the early stages of their professional careers. The Minneapolis College of Art and Design is proud to be the administrator of this fellowship program that has benefited more than 155 artists over the past 30 years.

These newest Jerome fellows were selected out of a field of 245 applicants by a panel of three arts professionals. This year’s jurors were Miranda Lash, curator of modern and contemporary art at the New Orleans Museum of Art, Shirley Tse, artist and professor at California Institute of Arts, and Jill Ewald, director of the Flaten Art Museum at St. Olaf College.


Susannah Bielak is an interdisciplinary artist who creates visual narratives that straddle the historical and contemporary. By researching paradoxical situations and uncanny relationships that she encounters in personal and public life—such as her family’s experiences in the 1985 Mexico City earthquake in the piece Quake/TremblorBielak finds poetic ways of responding to social issues with material experimentation and collaborative practices. A graduate of Macalester College, the artist earned her MFA at the University of San Diego in 2009.

Amanda Hankerson has launched an ambitious portrait project exploring the connection among the small number of living people (fewer than 2,000) who share her uncommon last name. Using photography, video, historical documents, and social media, she examines the notion of family in a once slave-holding nation with other Hankersons that have vastly different histories, spanning 260 years. Currently a photographer at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts, Hankerson received her BFA from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design in 2004.

Michael Hoyt maintains a varied art practice grounded in community. While creating art objects and public art projects for conventional arts and cultural institutions, he also designs and implements youth development programs in non-traditional art venues. His recent and ongoing project, PohoPosit, puts his painting background to the service of a multimedia installation wherein the physical and virtual worlds of landscape painting, video animation, sculpture, and network-based interactive media come together and ask the viewer to pause and reflect for at least a little while. Hoyt received his BFA from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design in 1994.

Melissa Loop is a landscape painter who mines the long history of the genre and subverts it with her fantasy landscapes. Her hyper-colored canvases with their haphazard drips, neon spray paint, jumbled digitized shapes, and rainbow-infused skies literalize the artificiality of imagined paradises and bespeak her concern for ongoing globalization, colonization, and touristic expansion in exotic locations. In 2005 Loop received her BFA from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design.

Lauren Roche considers herself as a type of fortune teller, someone whose drawings reveal the subtleties of the sitter’s hidden mannerisms and vulnerabilities. She prefers to draw people with their pets or loved ones, as she notices people are more present while alongside a companion. Using varnish, acrylic, and sometimes bleach to sculpt a drawing, Roche chooses materials that are immediate, bold, and at times unpredictable. The largely self-taught artist works quickly and gesturally to capture the moments that depict the beautifully frightening parts of individuals.

The Jerome Foundation, created by artist and philanthropist Jerome Hill (1905–1972), seeks to contribute to a dynamic and evolving culture by supporting the creation, development, and production of new works by emerging artists. The Foundation makes grants to nonprofit arts organizations and individual artists living in the state of Minnesota and the five boroughs of New York City.