Faculty Members Receive RACC Fellowship Awards for Excellence in Visual Arts

October 05, 2015

Faculty members Ellen Lesperance and David Eckard have received 2015 Fellowship Awards from the Regional Arts and Culture Council (RACC). The award comes with a cash grant of $20,000.

RACC notes, “Ellen Lesperance creates art in various media but often employs the visual language of knitting, having once worked for Vogue Knitting as a pattern knitter. Her work is socially responsible and poignant yet inclusive – for example, she has created memorial paintings (“death shrouds”) for young women activists who have died while fighting for “causes greater than themselves.”  The RACC Fellowship will help Lesperance take a semester off from teaching to commit solely to a full-time studio practice. She will also attend two residency programs: the MacDowell Colony, and the American Academy in Rome’s Visiting Artist Program. She will also use some of the funds for materials for upcoming shows.”

In 2014 Lesperance received an Art Matters and Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant; in 2012, she was awarded a Hallie Ford Fellowship; in 2010 she received The Betty Bowen Award and was a MacDowell Colony Artist-in-Residence.

And, “David Eckard was selected for a RACC Fellowship on the strength of his personal studio work, public performances and his dedication to the arts community both at PNCA and in his activism on behalf of artists. ... He will use fellowship funds (and take a sabbatical from PNCA) to research, design and begin implementing plans for a “creative compound” on his property, which will be populated with exhibitions, screenings, conferences, neighborhood events, workshops, residencies and mentoring opportunities.”

Eckard, Lead Faculty in Sculpture, was awarded the Bonnie Bronson Fellowship for 2010, was one of the inaugural recipients of the Hallie Ford Fellowship in Visual Arts for 2010, and was a Juror’s Award recipient at the 2006 Oregon Biennial.

PNCA celebrates these accomplished artists, their works and achievements, as well as their contributions to the PNCA community.