“The NALAC Fund for the Arts is a glimpse into the incredible innovation, reimagination and creative engagement taking place across Latinx communities. We are so excited to support so many projects that truly push the envelope of Latinx cultural production,” said Adriana Rios, NALAC’s Grant Program Manager.
SAN ANTONIO—The National Association of Latino Arts and Cultures (NALAC) announced 43 NALAC Fund for the Arts grants today. Totaling $267,000, the awards provide funding to 26 Latinx artists and collectives and 17 Latinx arts organizations in 13 states and Puerto Rico.
“Through the NALAC Fund for the Arts we are proud to continue recognizing and investing in Latinx artists and organizations across the country and Puerto Rico,” said María López de León, NALAC’s president and CEO. “These artists and organizations uplift our communities, building opportunities to renew our diverse identities and to imagine ways to move forward in solidarity.”
From San Juan to Seattle, the awardees will carry out their respective projects through 2019. Grantees were selected from a pool of nearly 400 applications by a national peer panel process involving 45 arts experts representing diverse disciplines, regions and ethnicities. “The NALAC Fund for the Arts is a glimpse into the incredible innovation, reimagination and creative engagement taking place across Latinx communities. We are so excited to support so many projects that truly push the envelope of Latinx cultural production,” said Adriana Rios, NALAC’s Grant Program Manager.
Many of this year’s projects explore justice through diverse lenses such as labor rights, incarceration, migration, gender, and cultural equity. Notably for the first time, NALAC Fund for the Arts awards will be made in Kentucky.
NALAC Fund for the Arts grants for artists and organizations range from $5,000 to $10,000. With support from the City of San Antonio’s Department of Arts & Culture, five artists based in San Antonio will receive grants of $5,400.
Playwright Virginia Grise and theater artist Manny Rivera will receive a $25,000 Mentorship Award, the largest-ever grant awarded by the organization. Grise will work with Rivera to stage an adaptation of Helena Maria Viramontes’ novel Their Dogs Came with Them at the Perryville Women’s Prison in Goodyear, Arizona, and Borderlands Theater in Tucson, Arizona. The show will explore themes of war, homelessness, mental illness, gang life and state violence. Through their collaboration, Grise and Rivera aim to continue an intergenerational conversation amongst queer communities of color and explore how artistic work is produced across borders and beyond bars.
Fernando Frias De La Parra will receive the Adán Medrano Legacy Award in Film, a $10,000 grant designed to support emerging Latinx filmmakers. The grant will support post-production of Ya No Estoy Aquí, a narrative film about a 17-year old Mexican boy who migrates from Monterrey, Mexico to Jackson Heights, New York. The film has been supported by the Sundance Institute, Cinereach, and the San Francisco Film Society.
Earlier this month, NALAC awarded an additional $25,000 to ten artists in Puerto Rico in order to support artistic production on the island. In partnership with the Pregones/Puerto Rican Traveling Theater of New York, the artists were recognized on February 9th at the Museum of Contemporary Art of Puerto Rico.
In the 13th cycle, NALAC also introduced the Pod Grant—a $2,500 grant opportunity that supports mobilizing and organizing projects by Latinx artists and cultural workers who support NALAC’s mission to develop and cultivate the Latinx arts field. The organization will award an additional $10,000 to four organizing projects across the country later this month.
The Texas grantees are: Carolina Storyteller (Literature), Killeen; Virginia Diaz (Folk/Traditional Arts), Houston; Amalia Leticia Ortiz (Interdisciplinary), San Antonio; Anna De Luna (Theatre), San Antonio; Marisela Barrera (Interdisciplinary), San Antonio; Michael Menchaca (Visual Arts), San Antonio; Xelena Gonzalez (Literature); San Antonio; Cara Mia Theatre Co. (Theatre), Dallas; Centro del Obrero Fronterizo| La Mujer Obrera (Folk/Traditional Arts), El Paso; and Fuerza Unida, Inc. (Folk/Traditional Arts), San Antonio.
Founded in 1989 in San Antonio, Texas, NALAC has developed programs that stabilize and revitalize Latinx arts and cultures in the United States. To date, NALAC has awarded over 560 grants to the Latino arts and cultures field, reflecting an investment of $2.8 million across 26 U.S. states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and México.
The 13th edition of the NALAC Fund for the Arts is possible thanks to the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Ford Foundation, Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, Southwest Airlines, Surdna Foundation, Nathan Cummings Foundation, the City of San Antonio Department of Arts & Culture and Pregones/Puerto Rican Traveling Theater.