Meet Our Winter 2015-16 Artistic Assistance Awardees

For Immediate Release

February 8, 2016
Contact: Nicole Gurgel-Seefeldt, Communications Manager

Alternate ROOTS is proud to announce our Winter 2015-16 Artistic Assistance Award Recipients.

This group of 26 artists, activists, and cultural organizers spans eight Southern states and the District of Columbia. They are creating films, zines, visual and sonic art installations, performances, and organizing projects on key issues impacting the south and the country: voter suppression, lynching of African Americans, employment discrimination of those differently abled, decolonization, gentrification, incarceration, and more. These members are working within their communities of place, tradition, and spirit, embedding arts and culture within grassroots movements for social change.  

Artistic Assistance provides direct support to individual artists and cultural workers in the South and helps ROOTS meet its mission to support southern artists and organizers working at the intersection of art, community and activism. Applicants submitted proposals in the late fall and panels comprised of artists across discipline, organizers, ROOTS members and individuals from peer organizations worked with ROOTS staff to make the final selections.

In this round of Artistic Assistance, ROOTS distributed $81,000 among our members – $57,400 for Project Development, $18,600 for Professional Development, and $5,000 for Presenting. The next round of Artistic Assistance is now open to ROOTS members, with applications due March 14, 2016 at 5 pm EST. You can learn more about the program here, and read about the free supports ROOTS offers applicants here.

Through funding community based social justice artists in the U.S. South, ROOTS leads the field by infusing resources where they are most needed. Please join us in congratulating this fantastic array of artists and cultural workers, who are helping to create a better South, and a better world!


Project Development

Angela Davis Johnson – Atlanta, GA
Ausettua AmorAmenkum – New Orleans, LA
Brenda Richardson – Sumerset, KY
Charmaine Minnifield – Decatur, GA
Claudia Montesinos – Barnardsville, NC
Jackie Olive – Wilmington, NC
Jason Foster – New Orleans, LA
Jessica Clark – Fairmont, NC
Jonathan Perkins – Columbus, GA
Laquita Staten – Norfolk, VA
Mat Schwarzman – New Orleans, LA
Mirra Shapiro – Disputanta, KY
Muthi Reed – Montgomery, AL
Rend Smith – Wilmington, NC
Terry Scott – Washington D.C.
Trupania Bonner – New Orleans, LA


Professional Development

Charlene Bowden – Atlanta, GA
Jarrell Hamilton – New Orleans, LA
Jonathan Banks – Logansville/Atlanta, GA
Michelle Gomez – Baltimore, MD
Mitch Barrett – Berea, KY
Monica Simpson – East Point, GA
Natalie Goodnow – Austin, TX
Tae Edy – Stone Mountain, GA


Amiee McCoy – Decatur, GA
Kai Barrow – New Orleans, LA


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Alternate ROOTS supports the creation and presentation of original art that is rooted in communities of place, tradition or spirit. We are a group of artists and cultural organizers based in the South creating a better world together. As Alternate ROOTS, we call for social and economic justice and are working to dismantle all forms of oppression—everywhere.