Grantee Spotlight,

Ucross Fellowship for Native American Visual Artists

The recently launched Ucross Fellowship for Native American Visual Artists is given to two artists annually, and provides artists with a one-month residency, a stipend, and inclusion in an exhibition in the Ucross Art Gallery. Located in northeast Wyoming in the foothills of the Bighorn Mountains, Ucross Foundation has awarded over 2,000 residencies to writers, composers, and visual artists in its 36-year-old history. This new fellowship honors Native artists in a region that holds deep cultural significance for Native American communities. Artist Sydney Jane Brooke Campbell Maybrier Pursel received the inaugural fellowship this year. Artist Brenda Mallory has been named the second recipient and will be in residence at Ucross in the fall. Both artists will be featured in an exhibition at the Museum of Art Fort Collins from January 17 – March 17, 2019 after which the exhibition will be on view at the Ucross Art Gallery from June 15 – September 14, 2019. The next fellowship application deadline is October 1st for one-month residencies taking place during March, April, or May 2019.

Photo of Sydney Pursel

Sydney Pursel specializes in socially engaged, activist, performance, video, and new media arts. As a member of the Iowa Tribe of Kansas and Nebraska with strong Irish Catholic roots, she investigates personal identity and contemporary Indigenous issues through art. Some of Pursel’s projects serve to educate others about food politics, assimilation, language loss, appropriation, and history in addition to community projects that focus on language acquisition, culture, and art. At Ucross, she worked on a leather patchwork wearable and the bodysuit and stripes of a flag that will accompany a video performance.

Photo of Brenda Mallory

A member of the Cherokee Nation, Brenda Mallory produces a range of work from individual wall-hangings and sculptures to large-scale installations. She uses mixed media to create multiple forms that are joined with crude hardware or mechanical devices in ways that imply tenuous connections and aberrations. She is interested in ideas of interference and disruption of long-established systems in nature and human cultures. Mallory grew up in Oklahoma and currently lives in Portland, Oregon.

Currently on view at Ucross Art Gallery is Wildlife, Pattern and Identity: Contemporary Native American Work from the Collections of Jordan D. Schnitzer and His Family Foundation. The exhibition features the work of ten artists, including Rick Bartow, James Lavadour, Jaune Quick-to-See Smith, Wendy Red Star, and Marie Watt. In honor of the Native American Fellowship, a print by Brenda Mallory (The Plural of Nexus, 2015) is also featured in the exhibition. A public reception will take place on Saturday, August 25th with a reading by Native American poet Sherwin Bitsui, who will be a writer-in-residence at Ucross. The gallery will also present the documentary Native Art Now! for the duration of the exhibition.

Photo of Ucross Foundation entrance sign

Photo Credit: Bill Megalos

The Ucross Art Gallery is located ½ mile east of the intersection of Highways 14 and 16 in Ucross, Wyoming. Gallery hours are Monday – Friday, 8:30AM – 4:00PM and on Saturdays in July and August from 10:00AM to 4:00PM.

Ucross Foundation is a Fall 2017 Grantee of The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts. Established in 1987, the Foundation’s  mission is the advancement of the visual arts. Our innovative and flexible grants program has given over $200 million in cash grants to over 1,000 arts organizations in 49 states and abroad. The next application deadline is September 1, 2018. Learn more at

Header Image: Ucross Foundation, Photo credit: Bill Megalos.