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News Release
Marie Watt's
Marie Watt's "Sky Dances Light"
29 Oregon artists receive Career Opportunity Program grant awards (Photo) - 06/03/24

Salem, Oregon – In the second round of FY2024 Career Opportunity Program grant awards, the Oregon Arts Commission and The Ford Family Foundation have awarded $98,798 to 29 artists for career development projects. 

The awards include $45,798 from the Oregon Arts Commission for all artistic disciplines and $53,000 in supplemental funding for 14 established visual artists through a partnership with The Ford Family Foundation’s Visual Arts Program. Individual grants range from $550 to $9,000.

Career Opportunity grants support individual Oregon artists by enabling them to take advantage of timely opportunities that enhance their artistic careers. Most grants support the artists’ participation in residencies, exhibitions or performance opportunities.

“This grant program invests in the career growth of talented Oregon artists,” said Arts Commissioner Roberta Lavadour, who led one of two review panels. “That support is a powerful way for artists to become better recognized and enhance their arts resumes.”

The Ford Family Foundation funds are available to established Oregon visual artists who are producing new work in the fields of contemporary art and craft. 

“The Ford Family Foundation deeply values the unique contributions of artists to our state and our nation,” said Kara Carlisle, president and CEO of The Ford Family Foundation. “We are honored to support Oregon visual artists as they take critical next steps in their careers.” 

FY2024 Career Opportunity Program round two grant award recipients are:

Marley Badolati, Eugene

Oregon Arts Commission $2,000

To support Marley’s continued education in poetic craft for both professional teaching purposes and personal artistic advancement.

Iván Carmona, Portland

The Ford Family Foundation $3,000

To support the cost of materials, colored glass for casting and neon sculptures, during Pilchuck School of Glass, Artist in Residence, Session 3, June 24 to July 6.

Srijon Chowdhury, Portland

Oregon Arts Commission $2,000

The Ford Family Foundation $5,500

To support the cost of fabricating a welded steel sigil structure that will hold Chowdhury’s paintings for a solo exhibition at PPOW, a gallery of contemporary art, in New York, September 2024.

Birch Cooper, Portland

Oregon Arts Commission $1,248

The Ford Family Foundation $3,000

To support a solo exhibition of new work by the MSHR art collective at Calm & Punk Gallery in Tokyo in the fall of 2024.

Michael Espinoza, Portland

Oregon Arts Commission $2,000

The Ford Family Foundation $4,000

To support the photographic and textile project “Instant Gratification” during a three-month residency at the Tom of Finland Foundation (TOFF) in Los Angeles, as well as a solo exhibition of this work in San Francisco between August and October 2024.

keyon gaskin, Portland

Oregon Arts Commission $2,000

To support housing costs associated with teaching and performing at the Seattle Festival of Dance + Improvisation.

Lilia Hernandez Galusha, Portland

Oregon Arts Commission $2,000

The Ford Family Foundation $5,500

To support a solo exhibition at the Windgate Gallery, University of Arkansas – Pulaski Technical College, in August 2024.

Emelia Hiltner, Portland

The Ford Family Foundation $3,000

To support participation in an artist residency at the International Ceramics Studio in Kecskemét, Hungary, May 3 to June 2, including two master classes from renowned ceramicists. Hiltner will also document the experience in June in an article for the Museum of Ceramic Art /New York.

Samuel Hobbs, Portland

Oregon Arts Commission $2,000

To lead educational sessions around Arts Access and to support Hobbs’ attendance at the Western Arts Alliance’s annual conference, Aug. 26-29, as well as participation with Conexiones, WAA’s Latinx artist affinity group.

Erinn Kathryn, Portland

Oregon Arts Commission $2,000

To support travel to and from, plus costs associated with, an artist residency awarded by Centrum Artist Residency in Port Townsend, Washington, for three weeks in November 2024.

Shaun Keylock, Portland

Oregon Arts Commission $2,000

To support the restoration of costumes, lighting and sound design for Tere Mathern's “Evidence of Division” (1999), an essential component of Conduit Dance’s summer exhibition “Recharged,” June 21-23 at Lincoln Performance Hall.

Cynthia Lahti, Portland

Oregon Arts Commission $500

The Ford Family Foundation $3,500

To support Lahti’s participation in the prestigious Ceramica Suro ceramic sculpture residency in Guadalajara, México. During the three-month residency, Lahti will have access to ceramic manufacturing facilities as well as technical assistance to help create new artworks inspired by the experience.

Victor Lodato, Ashland

Oregon Arts Commission $2,000

To support Lodato’s travel costs to participate in various literary events associated with the publication of his third novel, “HONEY,” published by HarperCollins in the spring of 2024.

Karina Lomelin Ripper, Portland

Oregon Arts Commission $2,000

To support Lomelin Ripper’s attendance at the American Film Institute DWW+ workshop intensive, a prestigious workshop led by director Hanelle Culpepper, May 6-24 in Los Angeles.

Alison Lutz, Portland

Oregon Arts Commission $550

To support the documentation of Lutz’s solo art exhibition at Forsberg Gallery, Lower Columbia College, Longview, Wash., in April 2025.

Tamara Lynne, Portland

Oregon Arts Commission $1,500

To support Lynne’s travel costs to present “Theatre as Collective Imagination” at the 2024 Nature of Cities Festival in Berlin, June 4-7.

Eric Molina, Portland

Oregon Arts Commission $2,000

To support travel costs for the Portland-based Latin ska-core band Los Mal Hablados to perform, by invitation, at two music festivals on the East Coast: Muddy Roots in Tennessee the weekend of Aug. 29 and Supernova Ska in Virginia the weekend of Sept. 14.

Brenna Murphy, Portland

The Ford Family Foundation $3,000

To support a solo exhibition of new work by the MSHR art collective at Calm & Punk Gallery in Tokyo in the fall of 2024.

Celeste Noche, Portland

The Ford Family Foundation $3,000

To support the completion and production of “Bye and Bye,” a photobook memoir exploring the legacy of forced migration, ongoing displacement and the persistence of hope.

Emilly Prado, Portland

Oregon Arts Commission $2,000

To support Prado’s two-week artist residency at the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts (VCCA) in May 2024, where she will work toward the completion of her first draft of “Outlines: A Memoir,” her second book of creative nonfiction.

Jennifer Rabin, Portland 

Oregon Arts Commission $2,000

To support a residency at Pine Meadow Ranch Center for Arts & Agriculture in Sisters from late May to early June, to advance Rabin’s most recent mixed-media sculpture series.

Isabella Saavedra, Portland

Oregon Arts Commission $2,000

The Ford Family Foundation $1,000

To support an exhibition of original works in the group show “Where the Water Meets” in Newport in June 2024.

Ivan Salcido, Portland

Oregon Arts Commission $2,000

The Ford Family Foundation $7,000

To support Salcido’s participation in the “Get in the Game” exhibition at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA), September 2024 to April 2025.

Kerry Skarbakka, Corvallis

Oregon Arts Commission $2,000

The Ford Family Foundation $2,000

To support the associated costs with shipping and installing Skarbakka’s solo exhibition, “White Noise,” at Robert Morris University Media Arts Gallery in Pittsburgh, August 2024.

Salomée Souag, Portland

Oregon Arts Commission $2,000

The Ford Family Foundation $3,000

To support Souag’s acceptance into three artist residency programs in Portugal, Spain and Germany beginning in May. Immersing in diverse cultures, Souag will learn sustainable practices and will host a post-residency panel on how cross-disciplinary practices and residencies are crucial to the creative future.

Austin Turley, Portland

Oregon Arts Commission $2,000

To support Turley’s participation in the “MAD About Jewelry” exhibit at the Museum of Arts and Design in New York City, May 3-8.

Marie Watt, Portland

Oregon Arts Commission $2,000

The Ford Family Foundation $6,500

To support hiring a project lead to manage studio archives and image assets in coordination of “Marie Watt: Turtle Island,” a casebound, 250-page color catalogue to accompany Watt’s first major mid-career traveling retrospective, curated by Tyler Blackwell, at the Speed Art Museum, Louisville, Kentucky.

Jessie Weitzel Le Grand, Tigard

Oregon Arts Commission $2,000

To support the creation of sculptural work for an upcoming exhibit at Chefas Projects in Portland, opening June 14.

Beth Wilson, Portland

Oregon Arts Commission $2,000

To support Wilson’s career development as a community-focused, site-specific installation artist through the construction of a community-driven, large-scale permanent art piece, serving as both a welcome and a land acknowledgement piece, on Black Sheep Flower Farm in Lewiston, Illinois, summer 2024.

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The Oregon Arts Commission provides leadership, funding and arts programs through its grants, special initiatives and services. Nine commissioners, appointed by the governor, determine arts needs and establish policies for public support of the arts. The Arts Commission became part of Business Oregon (formerly Oregon Economic and Community Development Department) in 1993, in recognition of the expanding role the arts play in the broader social, economic and educational arenas of Oregon communities. In 2003, the Oregon Legislature moved the operations of the Oregon Cultural Trust to the Arts Commission, streamlining operations and making use of the Commission’s expertise in grantmaking, arts and cultural information and community cultural development. 


The Arts Commission is supported with general funds appropriated by the Oregon Legislature and with federal funds from the National Endowment for the Arts, as well as funds from the Oregon Cultural Trust. More information about the Oregon Arts Commission is available online at: artscommission.oregon.gov.