Southeast artists earn Rasmuson Foundation honors

Drag queen, writers, sculptors, weavers and more named Individual Artist Awards winners

The Rasmuson Foundation announced its Individual Artist Award winners for 2019, and Southeast will be well-represented.

James Hoagland of Juneau, known to many in the capital city by the drag name Gigi Monroe, and Vivian Faith Prescott, who contributes to the Capital City Weekly, of Wrangell, were each selected as fellows this year.

Prescott will create a full-length manuscript of poems as a “climate wellness,” which will document her relationship to the changing climate, according to a release from the foundation.

Hoagland will pursue training in voice, dance, script writing and costume design, according to the release.

That distinction comes with an $18,000 award that’s intended to allow mid-career artists to focus their energy and attention on their art.

This year’s distinguished artist is Richard Nelson of Sitka, which comes with a $40,000 award.

Seven artists from Southeast Alaska earned project awards, which come with $7,500 in support.

Those include include Michaela Goade of Juneau, sculptor Rhonda Green of Ketchikan, photographer John S. Hagen of Haines, weaver Anastasia Shaawat Kah Gei Hobson-George of Juneau, Uillean piper John Ingman of Sitka, multidisciplinary artist Ellie Schmidt of Sitka and metal carver Jeffery P. Sheakley Jr. of Coffman Cove.

Rasmuson Foundation named a total of 35 artists in 18 Alaska communities as Individual Artist Award recipients for 2019. There was a statewide pool of 317 applicants.

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