Thursday November 05, 2015

Art Matters and Jerome Foundation Residencies at Camargo


Art Matters and Jerome Foundation are delighted to announce the artist grantees selected for pilot year residencies at the Camargo Foundation in Cassis, France. Individual artist grantees of Art Matters Foundation and Jerome Foundation had the opportunity to apply for one-month residencies at the Camargo Foundation in Cassis, France. The purpose of the residencies is to think, create, and reflect; learn from other artist and humanities scholars; and draw from and connect with resources of the Provence region. Two Jerome recipients and two Art Matters recipients were awarded residencies and stipends to cover travel, per diem, materials, and other expenses.

A three-person selection committee of nationally recognized artists and curators, writer and performance artist David Mura, Minneapolis, Minnesota; Martha Wilson, artist and Founder and Executive Director of Franklin Furnace, New York City; and film and new media artist Cauleen Smith, Chicago, Illinois, reviewed applications and selected the four recipient and alternates. The Board of Directors of Jerome Foundation approved the panel recommendations for the Jerome grantees and the Board of Art Matters approved panel recommendations for Art Matters grantees.

Residency grants were provided to Nicholas Boggs, Matana Roberts, Việt Lé, and Akosua Adoma Owusu.

Nicholas Boggs will continue work on a book-in-progress, Things Not Seen. This will advance the text toward a deadline in the fall of 2016 for a full draft to be submitted to publishers. Things Not Seen will be the first book to tell the story of the black American writer James Baldwin’s collaboration with French painter Yoran Cazac. Based on a decade of original research in the United States and Europe, the book promises to deepen and complicate an understanding of Baldwin’s life and work, particularly in his later years, the majority of which he spent at his home in St. Paul-de-Vence in the south of France, where he died in 1987. On either side of the residency, Boggs will conduct interviews with contacts, in the St. Paul-de-Vence area, who knew Baldwin.

Matana Roberts will continue the compositional development of segments of a twelve-part series, titled Coin Coin, on history, ancestry, and memory. Within a more focused environment away from distractions, Roberts will complete the next few segments, investigating the connections to France with her own ancestry and the Coin Coin project. Roberts will examine the slow disappearance of the Occitan language, which has parallels with a similar disappearing dialect in the small Louisiana town her family called home. She will work on large graphic scores and develop acoustic and electronic digital sounds for the work.

Việt Lé will research and complete a series of photographic portraits and hybrid documentary music videos on the legacies of French Indochina, particularly Vietnamese immigrants living in Marseille. The video art component consists of oral interviews with Vietnamese immigrants living in the Marseille area combined with an original music soundtrack and improvised choreography. The soundtrack plays homage to the Vietnamese and French songs that have been popular in Vietnam and its Diasporas since the 1930s. In the video, Cassis, its history of sea voyages and the beauty of the calanques, will serve as a fictional fantasy “refugee camp” site. The proposed work is an outgrowth of Lé’s “love bang” video and photographic series, which deals with transnational Asian popular music and the traumas of history and modernization.

Akosua Adoma Owusu will work on a feature narrative film titled Save the Rex. This work is about a Ghanaian-American filmmaker who, while in Ghana to receive an African Movie Academy Award, is inspired to launch a Kickstarter campaign to refurbish the Rex Theater, the oldest cinema house in West Africa. The work is a coming-of-age, semi-autobiographical film that weaves together real life and fictionalized storytelling to explore the ideas of individual and collective identity, home, and otherness. The residency will be devoted to developing the first draft of the work. While at Camargo, she will attend FIDMarseille, a film festival that will provide sustenance for her work and the development of connections. One of the prominent characters in Save the Rex is French, so immersion French culture will give her the ability to provide added depth and dimension to the character.

For further information about these grants, please contact Jerome Foundation President Cynthia Gehrig at 651.224.9431 or 1.800.995.3766, Art Matters Director Sacha Yanow, 917.478.1010, or Camargo Foundation Program Director Julie Chénot at [email protected] Visit the Jerome Foundation at, Art Matters at, and Camargo Foundation at

The Jerome Foundation, created by artist and philanthropist Jerome Hill (1905–1972), seeks to contribute to a dynamic and evolving culture by supporting the creation, development, and production of new works by emerging artists. The Foundation makes grants to not-for-profit arts organizations and artists in Minnesota and New York City.

Art Matters awards grants to U.S. artists for work that is socially engaged with a focus on local, national, and/or global concerns. It supports artists working in all visual media including experimental performance and film. Art Matters is particularly interested in subversive or provocative content, and artistic practice that expands definitions of a traditional medium.

Camargo Foundation, founded by artist and philanthropist Jerome Hill, is a residential center offering programming in the humanities and the arts. Located in Cassis, France, it offers time and space in a contemplative environment to think, create, and connect. The Foundation encourages the visionary work of scholars, artists, and leading thinkers in the arts and humanities.