Efroymson Family Fund Awards $25,000 Fellowships to Five Midwest Artists

The Efroymson Family Fund, a donor-advised fund of the Central Indiana Community Foundation, announced the recipients of the 2018 Efroymson Contemporary Arts Fellowship at a private reception on Nov. 28 in Chicago. Since 2004, the Efroymson Family Fund has awarded 55 Fellowships totaling more than $1,000,000 to contemporary visual artists in Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, Kentucky, Ohio and Wisconsin.

The 2018 Efroymson Fellowship recipients listed below were each awarded $25,000 to help them continue their artistic development:

  • Bethany Collins – Chicago, Illinois
  • Tirtza Even – Chicago, Illinois
  • José Carlos Teixeira – Madison, Wisconsin
  • Alexa Horochowski – Minneapolis, Minnesota
  • Andres Hernandez – Chicago, Illinois

The Efroymson Contemporary Arts Fellowship was established in 2004 to foster creativity and to encourage contemporary artists at all stages of their careers. This unrestricted award is intended to support the personal and professional development of the recipients and can be used for living expenses, equipment and supplies, studio rental, travel essential to artistic research, to develop new bodies of work, or to complete works in progress.

Fellows are selected based on the quality, skill, creativity and uniqueness of their work; their commitment to developing their work; and the impact the award will have on their careers. This year’s Fellows were chosen by a five-member selection committee through a blind selection process. The selection committee included:

  • Marcela Guerrero, assistant curator of Whitney Museum of American Art, New York
  • Jamie DeSimone, associate curator of Contemporary Art Portland Museum of Art, Maine
  • Francesca Altamura, curatorial assistant of New Museum, New York
  • Mike Calway-Fagen, artist, curator and director of exhibitions at Stove Works, Chattanooga, Tennessee
  • Amy Zion, independent curator and faculty member of Center for Curatorial Studies at Bard College, New York 


Bethany Collins, Chicago, Illinois

Bethany is interested in the unnerving possibility of multiple meanings, dual perceptions, and limitlessness in the seemingly binary. Fueled by a critical exploration of how race and language interact, language is both the subject of her work and the primary material— from dictionaries and encyclopedias to literary journals and newspaper archives. She has found that language is also a prism through which she can interrogate all other topics. Struggling with the consistent duality of language—its potential and inevitable failure – remains the basis for her making. Originally from Montgomery, Alabama, her work remains rooted in the history and memory of the American South. Through the dissolution of dichotomies and exploration of language, this work recalls moments in the formation of her racial identity as Black and Biracial. She has found that language is a prism through which she can interrogate topics of interest – from race and identity to history and memory. The fellowship will enable Bethany to develop new installations and performance-based works. Fellowship support will specifically be used for studio and living expenses, equipment and supplies and contracted labor. www.bethanyjoycollins.com


Tirtza Even, Chicago, Illinois

Tirtza is a practicing video artist and documentary maker for the past twenty years. Tirtza has produced both linear and interactive video work representing the less overt manifestations of complex, and at times extreme, social/political dynamics in specific settings such as a refugee camp in Palestine, a prison in the U.S. and a migrant-workers town in Spain. The desire to truthfully depict an intimate exchange with – and insight into – lives other than her own is the motivating force behind her work. Her work can also be described as an exploration of the inevitable, yet nuanced, failure of this very act of representation. Tirtza’s work Her work has been shown in galleries, museums and festivals in the U.S., Israel and Europe. The fellowship will enable Tirtza to complete three video projects. Fellowship support will specifically be used for artistic travel, equipment rental, marketing, and contracted labor for video editing and video post-production work. www.tirtzaeven.info


José Carlos Teixeira, Madison, Wisconsin

José is a visual artist and researcher born in Porto, Portugal. His interdisciplinary and research-based work involves primarily video-essay, photography, installation, text, and performance. It explores and expands on notions of identity, otherness, language, boundary, exile and displacement. Through strategies of participation, his pieces address specific issues related to locational identity, global diaspora, and the limits (or overlapping) of personal/social, physical/mental, and political territories. José focuses on processes of empathy and intersubjectivity, therefore incorporating multiple voices and subjects into his audiovisual projects. At the intersection of art, politics, cinema and anthropology, his is a socially-engaged practice, stemming from a (self-)reflexive and critical approach. The fellowship will enable José to complete a project in progress and to develop and expand his next body of video installation work that would continue to examine displacement and the refugee condition with a specific focus on movement, assimilation and integration. Fellowship support will specifically be used for artistic travel, translators, equipment rental and contracted labor for video editing and video post-production work. www.josecarlosteixeira.com


Alexa Horochowski – Minneapolis, Minnesota

Alexa is a dual citizen of Argentina and the United States. Her family left Argentina when she was almost ten years old – part of a ten-year exodus precipitated by a military coup. Building a life in the Midwest required that she remember and erase the past in equal measures. The landscapes she explores in her art, allows her to sustain a connection with her South American home while continuing to explore and understand her adopted home in Minnesota and the United States. Her work is unique in that it bridges national borders by considering the landscape and human condition from the perspective of the planet as a whole. Chance encounters with various materials, natural or man-made, often provide a starting point for her works in sculpture and video. Alexa is continually exploring new processes and materials that require careful research and trial and error in the studio and she manipulates materials as varied as seaweed, tar, clay adobe, organic fibers, wax, bronze, latex, plaster, steel, rope and wood. The fellowship will enable Alexa to complete two projects focused on the creation of sculptural and video based works. Fellowship support will specifically be used for artistic travel, equipment and supplies, marketing and contracted labor. www.alexahorochowski.com


Andres Hernandez – Chicago, Illinois

Andres is an interdisciplinary artist, designer, and educator who creatively explores the physical, social, and cultural environments we inhabit. Through collaborative work with artists, designers, and everyday citizens, as well as his independent, studio-based practice, Andres explores the potential of shared and public spaces for public dialogue, community building, and social action. He seeks to creatively connect citizens to learn about, envision, and create the spaces they truly desire for themselves, as well as advocate for the equitable planning, usage, and stewardship of public spaces for the benefit of all. His work often takes the form of archival research, writing, public programming, participatory workshops, creative placemaking, and ephemeral interventions and performances within vacant and abandoned spaces in urban contexts.

The built environment informs his research interests and creative production, which results from his education and professional training in the field of architecture. The interpretation and (re)shaping of space is Central to his practice, which draws inspiration from the physical landscapes of urban contexts, as well as the cultural and social histories underlying these spaces. The fellowship will enable Andres to focus more time on his artistic practice and the creation of new work. Fellowship support will specifically be used for studio rental, equipment and supplies, marketing and contracted labor.


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