United States Artists (USA)—a Chicago-based national arts funding organization—announced its 2023 Fellows on Tuesday from 10 creative disciplines. CalArts alums Antoine Hunter aka Purple Fire Crow (Dance 02) and Kite (Music BFA 14) were among the 45 fellows who will receive $50,000 unrestricted cash awards.
The USA Award honors artists from all stages of their careers for their creative accomplishments. The Fellowship supports ongoing artistic and professional development in the following disciplines: Architecture & Design, Craft, Dance, Film, Media, Music, Theater & Performance, Traditional Arts, Visual Art, and Writing.
Hunter, an internationally known producer, choreographer, director, and Deaf advocate, was named a 2023 Fellow of Dance. He emboldens his Urban Jazz Dance Company to “engage with audiences; empower Deaf and disabled communities; and advocate for human rights and access, working to end discrimination and prejudice.” While he cannot hear the music that accompanies his dances, Hunter has learned to experience and embody the music and beats.
The Oglála Lakȟóta performance artist, visual artist, composer, and academic Kite, awarded a 2023 USA Fellowship for Media, is one of the first American Indian artists to use machine learning in art practice. “Her groundbreaking scholarship and practice explore contemporary Lakota ontology through research-creation and performance. She often works in collaboration, especially with family and community members.”
Since 2006, United States Artists has awarded nearly 800 artists and cultural practitioners more than $38 million of direct support through its USA Fellowship flagship program.