Tools are synonymous with building, but they can also be attributed to creative pursuits.
In their simplest forms, hammers and screwdrivers are likened to pencils or brushes. Try to create, say, a beautiful glass creation and you might need tools that are a little more complex.
Just like no tradesperson starts out owning these tools of the trade, artists face a similar challenge to learn new skills and procure costly equipment and technology.
Thanks to grants from The Arts Partnership, 10 local artists will receive funds to record music videos and podcasts, explore the fringes of photography, deck out home studios and further their artistic careers.
Totaling $20,500, the grants are made possible by privately raised dollars, as well as the Erin Koffler Memorial Fund and donations by the Moorhead PEO Chapters.
Local glassblower Jon Offutt will use his grant of $1,950 to continue innovating after more than 40 years of experience by purchasing tools to create flat landscapes with fused glass.
“The first landscapes that I created were simply blue and green, sky and land,” Offutt says about his now widely known glass vases featuring scenes of the Great Plains.
“Over the past decade, and with much trial and error, I’ve since added clouds, furrows, and tree lines,” he says.
Using a variety of processes over the years, Offutt adds to his experience in casting, sculpting and blowing glass with a lesser-known craft of slumping glass — using glass to create flat forms, like paintings in crystalline fashion.
Receiving $1,800, wet plate photographer Kary Janousek plans to collaborate with Bonanzaville in West Fargo by offering live demonstrations of her rare process during this summer’s Pioneer Days.
“I am especially drawn to blurring the line between the past and the present,” Janousek says.
As the only local female working in the process nearly lost in antiquity, Janousek will use a large-format, accordion-shaped camera to capture reenactments and highlight the historic buildings.
The images captured over this summer will be donated and archived by Cass County Historical Society alongside works of previous photographers who used the process dating back to 1851.
Receiving $2,100 to record a series of small chamber compositions, the Boreas Trio includes three faculty members at North Dakota State University: Cassie Keogh on clarinet; Matthew Patnode on saxophone; and Tyler Wottrich on piano.
“My personal artistic dream is to continue establishing my saxophone ‘voice’ in both concert and jazz idioms,” Patnode says.
The three musicians will hire a team to record a recital inside NDSU’s Beckwith Hall that will include works by regional composers like Kyle Vanderburg and Mark Engebretson.
Joshua Zeis will use his grant of $2,500 to continue his ceramics practice that was kickstarted after he was deployed with the military to Iraq.
“After that, I felt I should try to figure out what I wanted to do with whatever time I had, so somehow I started studying ceramics,” Zeis says.
With experience as an instructor at Plains Art Museum and working as a project coordinator at Hebron Brick Supply Co., Zeis will use the kiln at his studio called Mothership.
Meg Lindholm’s $2,100 grant will help continue development on her multimedia podcast, “Uplifted,” pairing narrative storytelling with insights designed to lead to better life outcomes.
Kwaician Traylor received $2,100 and will make upgrades to equipment to expand his business, including directing music videos and songwriting for local and national artists.
Oscar De Leon, co-founder of Chamber Six Media and co-chair of the North Dakota Human Rights Film Festival, received $2,050. The grants will be used in a collaboration with local musician Huck. on a series of road trip music videos.
Stephanie Manesis intends to use her $2,050 grant to work with a scriptwriter to compile hours of video interview footage with veterans to finish her documentary on compassion on the battlefield.
Megan Duda, a visual arts professor at NDSU, will use her $1,750 grant to help create camera-less, carbon-based photogenic recordings of the prairie during a two-week artist residency.