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Davidson News

Davidson artist among emerging and mid-career artists to receive ASC fellowships

Maurice J. Norman of Davidson earned an ASC fellowship. Photo | LinkedIn

Maurice J.. Norman. Photo | Alvin C. Jacobs Jr

April 24. Fifteen Charlotte-Mecklenburg creative individuals will receive a combined $185,000 from ASC in order to refresh their creative energy or develop their creative capacity.

Eight emerging artists are recipients of $10,000 ASC Emerging Creators Fellowships, which supports creatives with evolving practices that are at a pivotal moment in launching sustainable careers in the creative sector.

Maurice J. Norman, a writer and spoken word performer based in Davidson, received  an ASC Emerging Creators Fellowship to support artistic development in the creation and performance of a new spoken word album.

According to Norman’s LinkedIn page, he earned a Bachelor of Arts in African studies and English studies at Davidson College  in 2020.

In March, he became a racial justice consultant at the college.

Seven mid-career creatives are recipients of $15,000 ASC Creative Renewal Fellowships, awarded to individuals who have been pursuing a career in the creative sector for at least 10 years and have been generating the majority of their income over the past three years through their work as a sole proprietor, creative entrepreneur or contract employee in the creative sector.

Both fellowship programs provide funds that recipients can use for research, instruction, conferences, apprenticeships, travel or other experiences that help them explore their creative journey.

This year’s other ASC Emerging Creators Fellowship recipients are:

• Teil Buck, a musician and founder of the Phoenix Down RPG ensemble. Buck will use her fellowship to explore the innovative combination of music, gaming and collaborative storytelling highlighting local creators in Charlotte.

• Hector Vaca Cruz, a Latino documentary photographer. Cruz will establish himself as a full-time documentary photographer and filmmaker through the fellowship.

• Kerra Don, actress. Don will use her fellowship to support the bolstering of her professional acting ability and learning current industry practices.

• Maria Frey, a full-time studio potter. Frey will use her award to build a soda kiln that will further exploration of the soda-firing process and equip her with the means to fire a sustainable amount of work.

• Amber Johnson, a Charlotte-based dance artist. Johnson’s fellowship will support the exploration of the gender binary in narrative ballet form through the creation of a new work.

• Jamie McGhee, an Afro-Caribbean writer. McGhee plans to use their fellowship to take a research trip to Brazil and attend an artist residency near the Brazilian Atlantic Forest in order to complete a historical fiction novel.

• Lucy Phung, a painter and traditional/digital illustrator. Phung plans to use herf fellowship to travel to Vietnam and explore heritage and identity.

The 2023 ASC Creative Renewal Fellowship recipients are:

• Ana Lucia Divins, a singer, therapeutic musician and community connector. Divins will use her fellowship to support the exploration, creation and recording of therapeutic music.

• Lena Hopkins-Jackson, a cartoonist and writer. Hopkins-Jackson’s fellowship will help her enroll in master-level classes taught by an animator and screenwriter with Disney Studios.

• Eternity Philops, a non-disciplinary creative and yoga wellness educator. Philops will use their fellowship to support “Breaking the Binary – Raw Stories of BIPOC Shattering Society’s Gender Status Quo.”

• William Jenkins (Sir Will), a digital content creator specializing in video, mixed media and photography. Jenkins will use the fellowship to expand his art practice into new
mediums and genres, particularly public art and performative-based installations, to further his creative exploration and growth as an artist.

• Elizabeth Kowalski, a composer, producer and creator of multi-disciplinary artistic experiences. Kowalski will use her fellowship to support the exploration of innovative methods and best practices via apprenticeships, conferences, workshops and equipment purchase.

• Jermaine Nakia Lee, a Charlotte singer/songwriter, actor, playwright, filmmaker and community activist. A Creative Renewal Fellowship will allow Lee to enroll in the
Composition & Songwriting program at the famed Dark Horse Music Institute in Nashville, Tennessee.

• Patricia Raible, a Charlotte painter and artmaker. Raible will use her fellowship to extend her practice and demonstrate that aging is not a limiting factor to artistic expression by becoming proficient in new mediums, taking a Penland School of Craft workshop and mentoring with a master printmaker.