Support Artists / Meet Our Supporters

Our featured supporters

Meet individuals and institutions committed to developing and sustaining resources for the artists who enrich our lives.

See a list of our institutional supporters.
Gene & Liz Brandzel Fellowship & EDGE Scholarship

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Gene and Liz Brandzel with Program Manager Miguel Guillen.

For the Brandzel family, artist support is a family affair this year. To mark both her and her father’s birthdays, Anne Devereux’s perfect gift for her parents, Gene and Liz Brandzel, was a named Artist Trust Fellowship. Fellowships award $7,500 to practicing professional artists of exceptional talent and demonstrated ability. The Fellowship is a merit-based, not a project-based award. Recipients are determined by peer panels of artists and arts professionals from around and outside Washington State. The primary criterion for selection is artistic excellence.

To arrive at their decision as to which recipient would be named the Gene and Liz Brandzel Fellowship, Gene and Liz reviewed the 16 recipients of this year’s Fellowships. For 2012, artists working in Music, Media, Literary and Craft disciplines were eligible. Using their extensive experience in art appreciation and art making, Gene and Liz engaged in a dynamic conversation, appreciating each recipient’s vision. Choosing the work of just one talented artist out of so many is not an easy task, and Gene and Liz gained an appreciation of the work of the grant panelists who adjudicated 419 applications.

Feeling the tug between supporting artists working in their personal artistic discipline of choice, craft, or one new to them, Gene and Liz performed their own personal ritual of comparing their artistic preferences to arrive at a final choice: Webster Crowell, recipient of a 2012 Media Fellowship.

Liz (paraphrased): “It was Webster’s way of merging materials and using body language. There were no words, but it was a wonderful combination to create a story, drawing emotion. It got me excited.”

Ultimately, Gene and Liz agreed on their criteria: Webster’s work would satisfy their wish to learn and understand new forms of art. We all went away inspired by this year’s recipients, for Webster in particular… and for Gene and Liz!

Thank you to Anne Devereux and David Mills for sponsoring the Gene and Liz Brandzel Fellowship and EDGE Scholarship.

Please contact sheila@artisttrust.org with your ideas for supporting art at its source.

Sowing the Seeds

From the first line that was intentionally carved into a wall; the first group of feet that moved in unison; the first utterances that were synchronized into a meaningful sound—for millennia, humans have been sowing the seeds for what we now call art. Art has so completely become a part of our existence that it is not imaginable that we could exist without it. Thankfully artists continue to make art, to sow the seeds, and humanity continues to reap the rewards. Equally as grateful are we to those individuals that help nourish the environment that supports artists and art, sowing seeds of their own—seeds of support. Here are two such supporters whose donations are administered through Artist Trust’s Grants for Artist Projects (GAP) Program.

Jini Dellaccio: The Carl & Jini Dellaccio Grant

As a teenager during the Great Depression, Jini Dellaccio played saxophone with the “Girl Groups” of that era, giving her a lifelong affinity for the scruffy musicians that would later become the focus of her work as a master photographer. Her iconic images of seminal Northwest rock ‘n’ roll bands from the early- to mid-1960s capture both the aesthetics and attitudes of these influential groups. Jini Dellaccio passed away on July 3, 2014 at the age of 97.

Rosita & Oscar Romero: The Fund for Latino/Latina Artists

Rosita Romero has an extensive history in the Seattle area as a supporter of the arts and community activist. She is a Washington State Arts Commissioner; Member, City of Seattle Museum Development Authority Council; Co-Founder/Life Member, Mujeres of the Northwest; Co-Founder, Viva la Música Club; Artist Trust Board member; and much more. Rosita says of this award: “My interest in creating the specific fund for Latino/Latina artists is to promote the services and support that Artist Trust offers to the artists in the state while finding other ways for Artist Trust to become better known and sought after by Washington’s Latino artists. I believe this is a community that is not aware of the support that is offered by Artist Trust and I want Latino artists to experience that good feeling of being recognized as a valuable member of the community. I do believe that we do have talent but only very few are able to knock on the doors of recognition.”

Thank you, Jini and Rosita—your dedication keeps the seeds of art growing.

The Dale and Leslie Chihuly Foundation

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[from left] Leslie Chihuly, Leo Berk, Margie Livingston, Dale Chihuly. photo: David Choe

There is nothing more exciting for us at Artist Trust than to announce new programs designed to help artists prosper. In keeping with our mission, the Arts Innovator Award is certainly one of those programs. Launched in 2010, this award is due to one successful Washington State artist, his appreciation of the role that grants played in his formative years and ultimately to his generosity: Dale Chihuly. Together with his wife Leslie, Dale established a new family foundation in August 2009 to inspire and educate the public regarding all forms of art, and to provide support to artists and arts organizations. As Dale says:

Grants had a pivotal impact on my career in the early years. It is a privilege to be able to provide these grants, and through them, Leslie and I hope to make a significant impact on the careers of innovative artists in Washington State.

They approached Artist Trust to develop a partnership to administer this new award, making a three-year commitment with a generous gift for two artists to be awarded $25,000 each annually! This makes the Arts Innovator Award the largest grant available to individual artists in Washington State. The award’s intention is to support and recognize Washington artists who are forging innovative paths in their particular fields—artists working in all disciplines who are originating new work, experimenting with new ideas, taking risks and pushing the boundaries in their discipline.

We greatly appreciate The Dale and Leslie Chihuly Foundation for creating this award and for creating another reason that Washington State is a great place to be a practicing artist.