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Artist retreats - Fullbrights

I’m interested in applying for a Fullbright (or the like), or
alternatively for an artist retreat, but do not know what the best
options are for metalsmiths.

Please send me suggestions:

Which programs and places have you heard good things about–for a

And, what the heck does it take to be awarded one of these? I fear
my credentials are not terribly impressive.

Tracy in Boston

Hi Tracy, As a former Fulbright recipient to Indonesia, all I can
tell you about is my experience, and it wasn’t as a metalsmith. (If
you were, however, interested in various regional jewelry arts,
Indonesia would be a fabulous place to study.) For the social
sciences, those grants are awarded to graduate students; you would
have to check with the main office in DC to see if that is still
true, and if it’s true in the arts. There are differing levels of
Fulbright grants: student, scholar, and then individual ones for
visiting professors. It helps if you speak local languages. Best

Elna in Berkeley, where sun and fog are taking turns, and the maples are still afire.

Hi Tracy. I was a Fulbright scholar to Nepal, so I can give you an
idea what the application procedure is like. I was studying the the
traditional techniques of lost wax casting in the Kathmandu Valley,
making sculpture rather than jewelry, but I think that a Fulbright
for jewelry would be very possible. The screening goes something like
this: You send in the application to the New York office first. They
assemble a jury panel for all of the visual arts and design
categories. At this point, applications to all countries are juried
against each other. So, you would be juried against other jewelers
and mabye people in other craft disciplines (not entirely sure about
that) and the jury is made up of professionals in the art and design
fields. You will be notified at this point whether you advance to the
next selection level. Then, the application is forwarded to the
selection committee in the host country. This committee is consists
of half Americans living in the host country and half natives of the
host country. They deliberate and choose which projects would be the
most appropriate and ultimately award the Fulbrights. If you are
interested in pursuing a Fulbright, the most important first step is
to determine which country you would like to study in. There are
countries that encourage applications in art and craft disciplines
and there are countries that never award Fulbrights in these
categories. You can look at the various country at <A under the student program section. I would
consider countries in Scandinavia, many Asian countries and Italy
(very competitive!) for application. Now, once you have decided
which country you would like to apply to, you need to be very
committed to going to that country. Knowing the language is a very
important factor in receiving the grant. Fulbright does not award
grants to people who will need to spend most of the time leqarning
the language. So, you would need to speak the language of the country
already or be enrolled in a program of language study at the time of
application, since a language proficiency evaluation is part of the
application. This language requirement is why the United Kingdom has
an overwhelming number of applicants. Countries in which people
speak relatively obscure languages (Nepal would be one) get a small
number of applicants, improving your chances. The proposal is also
very important. It has to be writtento demonstrate how aFulbright is
a key step in your career path. I have more to say about this, but I
feel like I am going on and on… So, research the countries and
choose a country, enroll in a language course, and let me know when
you are going to write the proposal, and I will give you an idea of
what they are looking for. If you can make contact with some people
in the host country before you write the proposal, that can be very
beneficial too ( you must be committed to applying before contacting
people about your plan, in my opinion). The next application period
begins in May 2004, so you have plenty of time to research your
options and make your plans! Good luck and please feel free to
contact me when you are ready to write your proposal. Natasha