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Congratulations to all of the recipients!

Celebrating Creativity: 5 Art Grants Awarded

MARIPOSA COUNTY–The Arts Council is proud to announce five grants totaling $10,000 have been awarded toward project investments for local artists and grassroots organizations.

Piloting in spring 2024, the Art + Community grant program receives funding from the County of Mariposa. It invites working artists, groups, and organizations to submit proposals for projects and programming. The projects must support community goals, or serve, uplift, and represent underserved populations in Mariposa County.

A select review panel of arts and community leaders evaluated applicants on their artistic merit, project design, and implementation. Also, community impact, professional capacity, and commitment to accessibility. Projects will take place starting June 2024 through May 2025.


“Each grant awardee met our evaluation criteria to the highest degree.” says Programs and Projects Co-Director, Ava Burns. “Their projects address active needs in Mariposa County through several different forms of creative arts. We know they’ll serve Mariposa County well and we are honored to support them on their journey.”


Grant Recipients

Megan Levad Beisner – Writer in Residence Program with Deborah A. Miranda
In 2025 Dr. Deborah A. Miranda, an American writer, poet best known for her memoir, Bad Indians, will visit Mariposa County for a week-long residency including a public reading and interview, a memoir workshop designed for indigenous writers, a high school classroom visit, and other opportunities to interact with our community.

Sandra Chapman – Cultural Medicine Walks: The preservation and revitalization of Native American traditional medicine practices are essential for maintaining cultural heritage, promoting tribal health, and fostering a deeper connection to the land. This project seeks to empower the tribal members by showcasing the wisdom of traditional medicine. This will include guided walks led by Sandra, Chairperson of the Southern Sierra Miwuk Nation.

Gail Driefus – The Ukulele Ensemble: Mariposa Ukulele Ensemble meets once a week to practice songs and partake in a close musical community. They also have performances throughout the year. This free program is primarily consisting of seniors and older adults, many of whom had no prior music experience. The Ensemble provides significant benefits to participants, with professional instruction and access to instruments. There are also social opportunities through music, movement. and creativity.

Anna Friedland – Foothill Art + Lecture program: This arts lecture series is a way to connect members of the community through the celebration of elder artists and regional arts legacy. Grant funding will contribute to the continuation of this existing program. It can also fund and expansion to wider audiences, contributing to communal mental health and creative connection. This project is in collaboration with Mariposa County Library and will culminate in a Mariposa Artist Archive.

Upper Merced River Watershed Council – Student Film Festival: Working in collaboration with two Mariposa filmmakers and County education partners, the Upper Merced River Watershed Council (UMRWC) will host an art and nature film festival for local youth. The year-long effort will include two components: a series of filmmaking workshops and a youth film festival in alignment with the organization’s Merced River Fest event held each spring.

More information about this grant program and the selection process is available at www.mariposaartscouncil.org/grant

The Arts Council, is an incorporated not-for-profit organization, created to promote and support all forms of the cultural arts, for all ages, throughout Mariposa County and is supported in part by the County of Mariposa, the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency, and the California Arts Council, a state agency.

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