Several Fremont County residents receive Wyoming Arts Council Folk Art Mentoring Grants

The Wyoming Arts Council announced today, June 18th,  the recipients of the fiscal year 2021 Folk & Traditional Arts Mentoring Project Grants.

The Mentoring Project Grant recipients are: Ralphaelita Stump teaching her daughter Raphaella Stump (both of Crowheart) the art of Eastern Shoshone Cradleboard Making; Audra Draper teaching Stan Castagno (both of Riverton) the art of Traditional Bladesmithing (check out our recent post featuring Audra by clicking here); Anita Thatcher (of Dubois) teaching Soleiana Abernathy and Annalissa Purdum (both of Lander) the art of Saddle Pad Latch Weaving; and Yong Hui Torske teaching Jill Wright (both of Casper) the art of Quilting.

h/t WAC – Master artist Ralphaelita Stump displaying one of her cradleboards.

Folk Art Mentoring Project Grants are designed to support the continuation of Wyoming’s folk and traditional arts through the process of in-person, hands-on instruction. A master artist selects a dedicated apprentice from their community to mentor over the course of the project in order to advance the skills of the apprentice in their traditional art form.


“Folk and traditional arts are typically learned through informal processes such as observation, imitation, and one-on-one apprenticeships” said Josh Chrysler, Folklorist for the Wyoming Arts Council.  “The Folk Art Mentoring Project Grant is designed to create opportunities for those informal, grassroots learning experiences where these art forms are best learned and maintained by the communities from which they come.”

Projects will run from July 1, 2020 – June 30, 2021 for no less than six months. The grant amount is $3,000 ($2,300 for master artist honorarium and $700 for materials and/or travel). Applications are made jointly between master and apprentice, and reviewed by a panel of experts. This year, the panelists included Kaitlyn Berle (Folk & Traditional Arts Coordinator, Wisconsin Arts Board), Jordan Dresser (Collections Manager, Northern Arapaho Tribal Historic Preservation Office), Maria Lisa Eastman (Cowboy Poet and Director of Rainhorse Equine Assisted Services) and John Dorst (Professor Emeritus, American Studies, University of Wyoming).

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