Charles McGee's 2015 Joyce Award win announced day before 91st birthday - The Charles H. Wright Museum Blog

Charles McGee's 2015 Joyce Award win announced day before 91st birthday

Charles McGee's 2015 Joyce Award win announced day before 91st birthday

Dec 15th Annoucement via The Joyce Foundation

Dear Colleague,

It's my great pleasure today to announce the 2016 Joyce Awards winners. Four collaborations between artists of color and cultural organizations in Chicago, Detroit and the Twin Cities have each won $50,000 from the Joyce Foundation's annual Joyce Awards competition. 

The Joyce Awards is the only program supporting artists of color in major Great Lakes cities. To-date, the Joyce Foundation has awarded $2.6 million to commission 50 new works since the annual program started in 2003.

The 2016 Joyce Awards winners are: 

Charles McGee with the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History

Charles McGee, 91, is perhaps Detroit's most important and influential visual artist. The Joyce Award will allow the Wright Museum to commission McGee for what he has described as his largest and perhaps final outdoor piece, a steel sculpture titled, "United We Stand."The piece will be unveiled in July 2016 to conclude the Wright Museum's celebration of its 50th anniversary and also kick off a yearlong citywide commemoration of the 1967 racial unrest. You can also watch a short video about Charles and his work here [Above].

Juan Angel Chávez with Chicago Children's Museum

Chicago Children's Museum will commission visual artist, Juan Angel Chávez to create a large-scale public art installation spanning the museum's second floor walls and ceiling. Schoolchildren and museum guests will inform the content of Chávez's piece and will continue to evolve over time with audience input. The piece will be installed in the summer of 2017.

Zakiyyah Alexander and Imani Uzuri with the Penumbra Theatre

The Penumbra Theatre in St. Paul, Minn., will commission musician and composer Imani Uzuri and playwright Zakiyyah Alexander to stage GIRL Shakes Loose Her Skin in the spring of 2017. The play represents new territory for the theater with themes of LGBT rights and social change under the new direction of Sarah Bellamy, who takes over artistic director duties from her father, Lou Bellamy.

Aparna Ramaswamy and Kyle Abraham with Ragamala Dance Company

Minneapolis-based, Ragamala Dance Company, will commission choreographers/performers Aparna Ramaswamy and Kyle Abraham to create a new work to be presented at the Walker Art Center. Drawing from the artists' own experience of cultural hybridity, the work will be informed by concepts of identity and place. The process will incorporate various community discussions and workshops, and premiere in the fall of 2017.

We encourage you to learn more about our winners and share the news within your networks or on social media using the hashtag #JoyceAwards


Angelique Power

Program Director, Culture

The Joyce Foundation

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