SFA’s new Plain View Fellowship supports ethnographers, documentarians, or artist-researchers in documenting folklife, culture, and heritage in the Greater Southwest and Northwest Mexico. It aims to elevate and illuminate a slice of folklife, culture, or heritage in the region that may otherwise be misunderstood, overlooked, or forgotten. The program takes its name from folklorist Mary Hufford’s notion that the study of folklife reveals beauty “hidden in plain view.” It is a pilot program. Three fellowships will be awarded.
Fellows may focus projects on an individual, a subculture, or a pertinent social, economic, or environmental issue as it intersects with culture & heritage. Fellows’ work may be researched and presented in photography, video, audio, writing, or any combination of these forms. Fellows will participate in peer mentorship with one another and with support from SFA Communications Manager & BorderLore Managing Editor, Kimi Eisele; SFA founder and folklorist Dr. Maribel Alvarez, guest mentors, and SFA staff.
Award Amount: $5,000
Application deadline: March 15, 2021
Notification: April 15, 2021
Project Start Date: May 1, 2021
Project End Date: December 1, 2021
Ethnographers, documentarians, or artist-researchers living and working in the Southwest with at least 3 years of work experience in their relevant field. Applicants may come from inside or outside academia, may be members of folk or traditional communities, and have formal or informal training. We especially seek applications from BIPOC individuals. Fellows will be selected by a panel of SFA staff and guest documentarians.
Use of Funds
Awardees can use funding to support:
- Their own time (fieldwork, research, peer learning)
- Materials/Equipment (audio, video, tech up-grades, subscriptions, computer)
- Honoraria for interviewees/culture bearers (under $500 per individual)
Terms & Expectations
Plain View Fellows will:
- Work independently to research and develop a documentary or ethnographic project revealing an aspect of culture or heritage in the region.
- Participate in monthly peer sharing sessions, facilitated by SFA.
- Offer one (1) public workshop/presentation sharing an aspect of your work (field methods, ethical approach, preliminary findings) including a skill-building component.
- Complete and present a work (or work-in-progress) for publication in BorderLore, SFA’s monthly online journal, and other outlets.
- Complete the work within a 6- to 9-month frame (by Dec. 1, 2021)
Please provide up to three (3) samples of your professional/artistic work. These can be written stories, audio stories, photo essays, photographs, photographic bodies of work, video works, or other words that illustrate your ethnographic, documentary, artistic and/or research experience. You may submit URLs to completed works, but please make sure they point to a specific project and not a general web site. Other acceptable formats include: doc, docx, pdf, jpg, mov, mp4, mp3
Contact Kimi Eisele, SFA Communications Manager, with any questions: firstname.lastname@example.org