LINCOLN, MA.- DeCordova Museum and Sculpture Park and the Jerome Lyle Rappaport Charitable Foundation announced this years recipient of the largest public annual award to an individual artist in Massachusetts, The Rappaport Prize. The $20,000 one-year stipend will be awarded to Sarah Walkera 42-year-old Bostonbased painter. Walker creates compositionally clearyet dazzlingly complexworks that reference the cosmos and the ever-collapsing new conceptions of physical, mental, and virtual space. The artists non-objective paintings have appeared at DeCordova in The 2001 DeCordova Annual Exhibition. The prize will be awarded at the Museums Annual Fall Meeting of Trustees and Overseers on Thursday, September 22, 2005.
About Sarah Walker - Sarah Walker belongs to a new generation of artists who link their vision and practice with newly understood realities of the twenty-first century: genetic mapping and engineering, neurobiology, quantum mechanics, fractal geometry, information theory, and the virtual realms of the computer and the Internet. Her paintings consist of a central and vertical undulating feature set against broad modulated horizontal passages, or against a monochrome ground. Shot through all of this are multiple arrays of smaller images, usually nested or linked sets of quasi-geometric nodes or shattered planar areas. The viewer seems confronted by a space marked by a dizzying instability. The discrete elements of the painting seem to move, rapidly throbbing and bolting and fluttering every which way at once, as if active slices of much larger continua. Images of her work are available online at www.sarahwalker.org.
Sarah Walker received her MFA from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and her BFA from the California College of the Arts in Oakland. She currently lives and works in Boston and also serves as chair of the Department of Visual and Performing Arts at Clark University in Worcester, MA. Walker has had several solo shows in the US and has participated in numerous group exhibitions in galleries and institutions, including Pierogi, Dorsky Gallery, Duke University Museum, Bronx River Art Center, Artspace, and National Academy of Design. She has been the recipient of many residencies and grants, among them a MacDowell Colony Fellowship, a residency at The American Academy in Rome, a regional NEA Fellowship, a Berkshire-Taconic Foundation grant, and a National Foundation for Advancement in the Arts Resident Fellowship.
About the Jerome Lyle Rappaport Charitable Foundation and Prize - The Rappaport Prize was established by the Jerome Lyle Rappaport Charitable Foundation to foster two goals: (1) to recognize both the achievement and potential of an artist who has already demonstrated significant creativity and vision, and (2) to encourage the artist to continue in a career of art making despite the ever present challenges which such a choice confronts. Choosing a career in the visual arts today requires courage and sacrificecourage in the sense that there are few guarantees of success in the arts, and even if success (however it is measured in the visual arts) is obtained, it cannot always ensure a livelihood. Sacrifice is also a requisite for the artist to remain committed to the long-term process of developing truly creative new work.
The Rappaport Prize is administered by DeCordova Museum and Sculpture Park and conforms to the Jerome Lyle Rappaport Charitable Foundations mission to encourage leadership in specific sectors of the community. DeCordova has attained a significant leadership position as the largest, most dynamic museum of contemporary American art in New England and serves as a national model for institutional involvement within the community.
There is no formal application process. The selection of the Rappaport Prize artist recipient is made by DeCordovas Director and Curatorial staff. A Jerome Lyle Rappaport Charitable Foundation Trustee may also assist in the selection process in an advisory capacity.
The only condition of acceptance by the artist is that DeCordova receive a work of art by the Rappaport Prize recipient. This acquisition will be added to the Museums Permanent Collection, which comprises 2,500 artworks largely by New England artists. The acquisition will further serve to enhance the artists career profile and the mutually beneficial artist/museum relationship. Selection of the work will be negotiated with the Museums curators and is subject to DeCordovas formal process of acquisition. Accession of the work of art will carry the credit of the Jerome Lyle Rappaport Charitable Foundation, which makes the acquisition possible through the establishment of the Prize and its stipend to the artist.
The previous recipients of the Rappaport Prize are new media artist Jennifer Hall (2000), installation artist Annee Spileos Scott (2001), sculptor/photographer Lars-Erik Fisk (2002), sculptor/installation artist John Bisbee (2003), and printmaker Debra Olin (2004).