Left: Tilcara Gay Webb, right: Gavin Laur

Grants & Awards

Announcing the Winners of New Arts Writing Scholarship Competition for New Mexico School of the Arts

December 3, 2015
Digital & Media Art

Santa Fe, NM – The Thoma Foundation is pleased to announce the winners of its new Arts Writing Scholarship competition for the New Mexico School for the Arts (NMSA) Senior Creative Writing program. The winners were selected based on their writing entries inspired by the Luminous Flux 2.0: new + historic works from the digital art frontier exhibition at Art House, the Thoma Foundation’s public art exhibition space in Santa Fe. The Foundation initiated the Arts Writing Scholarship program for NMSA to support creative arts writing and reflection on the field of Digital Art.

The scholarship competition was open to senior college-bound students earning a minor in Creative Writing at NMSA. The recipients of the scholarships are Tilcara Gay Webb, the first-place winner, and runner up Gavin Laur.

Tilcara Gay Webb received the $1,000 first-place scholarship for her essay about the technological relationship between art and writing inspired by Rafael Lozano-Hemmer’s Method Random 4 (2014) and its use of computer code. “I kept returning to the idea of the relationship between written code and art, and the prospect of translating one into the other,” said Webb. Webb, a Santa Fe native, is a senior Theatre major at NMSA who plans to earn a B.A. or B.F.A. in Acting after graduation.

Gavin Laur received the $500 second-place scholarship for his essay about Siebren Versteeg’s LIKE (2014). Laur, a senior Music major at NMSA, noted the parallel between melody and background accompaniment in music and the interaction between the two panels of Versteeg’s LIKE, which pairs a digital painting created by an algorithm with an image from Google’s reverse-image search tool. After graduation, Laur plans to study music and major in Piano Performance.

“The work with the Thoma Foundation has been transformative,” said Dr. Monika Cassel, the students’ instructor for the Senior Creative Writing Workshop and Acting Chair of Creative Writing and Literature at NMSA. “Students were able to engage creatively and intellectually with artists from around the world, having rich, collaborative conversations about cognition, perception, art, technology, and society. Their creative responses to the pieces in the Luminous Flux 2.0 exhibition grew into some of the strongest written work I have seen from these students.”

Luminous Flux 2.0 is on view at Art House through Summer 2016. The exhibition is free and open to the public Thursday – Saturday, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Art House is located at 231 Delgado St., Santa Fe, NM.

For more information about the New Mexico School for the Arts, visit: www.NMSchoolForTheArts.org.

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