The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage Announces 2012 Pew Fellowships in the Arts Recipients

The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage Announces 2012 Pew Fellowships in the Arts Recipients

Philadelphia, PA- A sculptor who dissects and reconfigures items found in grocery stores, IKEA showrooms, and other outposts of consumer culture; a young choreographer who creates dance out of ordinary, everyday movements and gestures; and a pioneer of the 1960s avant-garde jazz movement who is still arranging, composing, and playing music today. These are three of 13 exceptional artists from the Philadelphia area, including one collaborative team, who will receive $60,000 awards this year from The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage through Pew Fellowships in the Arts (PFA).

The 2012 Pew Fellows, seven of whom are first-time applicants to the program, were chosen in recognition of their extraordinary artistic achievements and the potential to use the fellowship to advance their work. Each of these “no-strings attached” $60,000 fellowships are granted over a one- to two-year period.

The 2012 Pew Fellows in the Arts are:

  • Deron Albright (filmmaker)
  • Marshall Allen (instrumentalist, composer, and bandleader)
  • Daniel Blacksberg (trombonist and composer)
  • Alex Da Corte (visual artist)
  • Meg Foley (choreographer)
  • Matthew Mitchell (pianist and composer)
  • Dan Murphy and Anthony Smyrski (visual artists)
  • Greg Osby (saxophonist and composer)
  • Jumatatu Poe (choreographer)
  • Catie Rosemurgy (poet)
  • Kevin Varrone (poet)
  • Lori Waselchuk (documentary photographer)

Fellowships may be awarded to artists at any stage of their careers. This year's group ranges from Alex Da Corte, a recent MFA graduate who has already exhibited his sculptures and videos at high-profile venues such as PS1 MoMA in New York City and the Hammer Museum in Los Angeles, to alto saxophonist Marshall Allen, the most senior Pew Fellow in the program's history, who has played with the historic Sun Ra Arkestra for over 50 years.

Pew Fellowships in the Arts director Melissa Franklin notes, “These distinguished artists have made significant contributions to Philadelphia's creative community and beyond, many of them exhibiting and performing for local, national and international audiences. The Pew Fellowship will provide them with invaluable resources to further their artistic goals and achievements, and to share their work with the public.”

These artists were nominated and invited to apply to the program. Fellows were then chosen by a distinguished panel of experts who work across a range of artistic disciplines. For more information about the PFA fellowship application and review process, visit

“Artists are the most important aspect of Philadelphia's vibrant cultural life,” says Greg Rowe, director of Culture Initiatives at The Pew Charitable Trusts. “We are delighted that Pew's support will help these 13 outstanding artists to continue to pursue their professional careers and contribute to the cultural vitality of the region.”

For the complete list of 2012 Pew Fellows in the Arts and full artist descriptions, as well as lists of this year's panelists and evaluators, please visit

Pew Fellowships in the Arts, a program of The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage, was established by The Pew Charitable Trusts in 1991 and awards grants to artists working in a wide variety of performing, visual, and literary disciplines. The program is in its 21st year and has awarded 268 fellowships to 274 artists, for a total investment of nearly $14 million in the creative and professional development of working artists in the Philadelphia area. Fellowships have been awarded to four collaborative teams over the years.