Saratoga Springs, NY (September 20, 2006) – - Yaddo artist Anna Schuleit
is among the 25 creative professionals working in a wide range of fields who are the recipients of a 2006 MacArthur Fellowship from The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, it was announced Tuesday in Chicago.
The MacArthur Fellowship is a five-year grant to individuals who show exceptional creativity in their work and the prospect for still more in the future. It is a "no strings attached" award designed to provide recipients with the flexibility to pursue their creative activities in the absence of specific obligations or reporting requirements. There are no limits on age or area of activity. Individuals cannot apply; they must be nominated.
Each fellow receives a $500,000 stipend paid in quarterly installments over five years.
Ms. Schuleit, who was in residence at Yaddo in late 2005 working on the concepts for two installation works and on a series of large paintings, was cited by the award committee for "illuminating the lives lived in mental health institutions by transforming historic facilities into moving, multi-sensory memorials." The work the committee referred to included Habeas Corpus (2000), a site-specific sound installation at Massachusetts' Northampton State Hospital, and Bloom (2003), a project that marked the closing of the Massachusetts Mental Health Center's original building in Boston by filling the structure's empty hallways with flowering plants and recordings of ambient sounds from the hospital's former life. The committee said, "... Schuleit's work pays tribute to forgotten lives and reminds us of our common humanity."
Born in Germany, the 32-year-old artist now lives in New York City. Ms. Schuleit received a B.F.A. from the Rhode Island School of Design and an M.A. from Dartmouth College. She was a visiting artist at the Westborough State Hospital in Westborough, Massachusetts, from 2001 to 2004 and has served as an arts instructor at the Nightingale-Bamford School in New York and as a consultant for the Metropolitan Transit Authority's Arts for Transit program. She will take part in an October 6th "Live from the NYPL" program featuring stories about Yaddo. Yaddo author Jonathan Ames will host the event, which is being co-sponsored by Yaddo, The New York Public Library, and The Moth. It will be held in the Library's Celeste Bartos Forum. For more information, click here.
Like Yaddo, the MacArthur Fellows Program, sponsored by The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, emphasizes the importance of creative individuals in society. Nominees are reviewed for their achievements, but the fellowship is an investment in a person's originality and potential rather than a reward for past accomplishments. In line with that goal, in 1990 the foundation established an endowed residency at Yaddo to annually support the visits of two creative artists working any discipline. Composer David Crumb and author and poet Peter Balakian most recently held the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation Residencies at Yaddo.