Category: Emerging Artist Award

EA Winner: Ashleigh Gordon

Dennis, Cape Cod, MA
Dennis, Cape Cod, MA

Emerging Artist Award: Music

“The St. Botolph award allowed me to meld some of my biggest passions: traveling, new music and culture. Coming at just the right time, the Emerging Artist Grant allowed me to perform contemporary music in the 180 Degrees Festival, a groundbreaking, multidisciplinary arts fest in Sofia, Bulgaria. Covering not only my travel and performing fees, the Grant also allowed me to design and lead a lecture presentation for Bulgarian audiences focused on the music of African American composers, a topic which I am knee-deep in exploring through my concert and educational series Castle of our Skins. With the generosity of the St. Botolph Club, I was fortunate to further develop my craft with new artists and audiences in new territory. Thank you for the invaluable opportunity, and the support and encouragement to continue exploring new music, locations and cultures!”

EA Winner: Stephanie Soileau

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Emerging Artist Award: Literature

“In the summer of 2015, my little family relocated to Portland, Maine, so my husband could enroll in graduate school. During the previous winter, we had been in residence at the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, where I had a luxurious seven months to work on a novel. I knew that if I wanted to push through to the end of this project without interruption once the FAWC residency was over, we were going to have to rustle up some childcare in Portland for our 2 1/2 year old daughter. The grant from the St. Botolph Foundation came at exactly the right time. No question, it’s a challenge to maintain a committed artistic life with a small child and a partner who’s a full-time student, but the EA Grant bought me three solid months to keep writing. For that windfall when we most needed it, I am very grateful.”

EA Winner: Sam Okerstrom-Lang

Sam-O
Sam Okerstrom-Lang

Emerging Artist Award: Visual

“I was awarded St. Botolph Club Foundation Emerging Artists Award in 2015. Thanks to this award, I was able to take the time to build and establish my artist website, a critical asset to my portfolio and network. The grant not only allowed me to ground my cloud identity, but financed the addition of a big quality camera for myself to record professional documentation and use as an extended creative tool in my art practice. These two assets have been critical and continue to be in my life and art.”

EA Winner: Ben Cosgrove

Ben Cosgrove
Ben Cosgrove

Emerging Artist Award: Music

“I am honored to be a recipient of an Emerging Artist grant: this award has not only given me protection from surprise obstacles but has provided the freedom to lift my focus from the madness of constant road work and devote energy into larger projects that I can really get excited about: I’m working on two new sets of recordings right now in addition to an unusual collaboration with a folk singer, and wouldn’t have the luxury of time for pursuits like these if not for this generous grant.

Even putting aside the award’s practical applications (car parts, instrument repairs, etc), its most significant effect has been the sense of responsibility it has given me: I feel obligated to treat my work with the same respect that the Foundation has, and to make music of sufficient artistic value to match the financial value of the grant. I can’t thank the SBCF enough for its validation.”

EA Winner: Edwige Charlot

Edwige Charlot
Edwige Charlot

Emerging Artist Award: Visual

“I am honored to have received the St. Botolph Club Foundation Emerging Artist Grant. Not only was the recognition and financial support greatly appreciated, it allowed me to pursue opportunities that I would have not had the chance to otherwise.

As an young and emerging artist, I feel that I am trying to make a name for myself and this award has is given me a platform to do so. The emotional support and encouragement from the Foundation and my fellow recipients was just as important. To be rewarded by the Foundation and recognized among this this incredible and diverse talent affirmed my belief in myself and my calling as a maker.

It has truly been an honor and a gift to be able to continue and propel my creative practice forward.”

EA Winner: Jen Ashe

Jen Ashe
Jen Ashe

Emerging Artist Award: Music

“Getting the EA grant meant, simply, the continuation of my craft.

As a single mom, when I lost my full time college teaching job, I was devastated. I considered the possibility of pursuing a full time job outside of music to support my daughter.

Receiving the grant gave me the support to persevere as an artist. I took auditions and reinvented myself as a teacher, working with preschoolers in music, instead of college students.

The grant came at a crucial turning point in my life. I’m now, in addition to singing new music as I had always done, also working with many early music ensembles and finding great joy in teaching younger children. The grant to me was an affirmation that music is my calling, and the encouragement to find new avenues in teaching and making music.”

EA Winner: Joo Lee Kang

Joo Lee Kang
Joo Lee Kang

Emerging Artist Award: Visual

“I was awarded St. Botolph Club Foundation Emerging Artists Award in 2012. Thanks to this award, I could continue drawing and conduct research simultaneously while I traveled in Korea. It led me with numerous opportunities: experience, inspirations, researches, and exhibitions. I had a solo exhibition at AURA Gallery, Seoul during my visit in Korea and “Approaching Volume” at Gallery NAGA, Boston right after I was back. Most importantly this endorsement helped me to have a visa as a foreign artist, so I can continue to explore and step forward in the art scene of USA. I hope that many other artists can benefit in the way I have this support and encouragement.”

EA Winner: Kimberly Elkins

Kimberly Elkins
Kimberly Elkins [Photo Credit: Sarah Shatz]
Emerging Artist Award: Literature

“I had just finished my second MFA in Fiction at Boston University, and didn’t yet have my Visiting Professor position at the University of Hong Kong’s MFA program, and so the $1,500 grant came as a great and surprising windfall. It allowed me to get through that summer after graduating, knowing that I’d have the funds to support myself, at least for an extra month or so, as I continued to work on my novel, WHAT IS VISIBLE. And so huge thanks and gratitude to the Foundation for continuing to provide such grants to emerging artists. You really help, where it counts!”

EA Winner: Mackenzie Van Engelenhoven

Mackenzie Van Engelenhoven
Mackenzie Van Engelenhoven

Emerging Artist Award: Literature

“The Emerging Artists grant was awarded to me at a critical time as a writer—I had just finished my MFA and was trying to figure out how to make my own work a priority when so many other “adult” obligations were fighting for my attention. One of the biggest struggles for me as an artist is prioritizing my own work and making time to write. Real life obligations often get in the way. The Emerging Artists Grant gave me the chance to fund time to work on my writing without feeling like there was something else I should be doing, which for a writer-by-night is a precious and rare feeling. The grant gave me permission to take myself and my creative work seriously, and funded writing time at a critical point in my creative process.”

EA Winner: Michael Dahlberg

Michael Dahlberg
Michael Dahlberg

 Emerging Artist Award: Music

“The SBCF Emerging Artist grant arrived at a time when I needed it most. Within a precarious window between completing a degree and establishing meaningful and sustaining work, it was like a friend reaching out to provide a hand. Thanks to my award, I was able to purchase equipment that has been vital in developing my voice as a cellist, helping me take full advantage of everyone opportunity that comes my way. I could not be more grateful!!”