The National Endowment for the Arts announced the 2019 NEA National Heritage Fellows, recipients of the nation’s highest honor in the folk and traditional arts. The 2019 recipients are masters of a wide range of folk and traditional art forms: Tejano singing, Basque music, and balafon playing; Spanish colcha embroidery, decoy carving, and leatherworking, as well as storytelling. Each fellowship includes an award of $25,000 and the recipients will be honored at two public events on September 18 and 20, 2019 in Washington, DC.
The 2019 NEA National Heritage Fellows are:
- Dan Ansotegui, Basque musician and tradition bearer from Boise, Idaho
- Grant Bulltail, Crow storyteller from Crow Agency, Montana
- Linda Goss, African-American storyteller from Baltimore, Maryland
- James F. Jackson, leatherworker from Sheridan, Wyoming
- Balla Kouyaté, balafon player and djeli from Medford, Massachusetts
- Josephine Lobato, Spanish colcha embroiderer from Westminster, Colorado
- Rich Smoker, decoy carver from Marion Station, Maryland
- Las Tesoros de San Antonio—Beatriz (La Paloma del Norte) Llamas and Blanquita (Blanca Rosa) Rodríguez, Tejano singers from San Antonio, Texas
- Bob Fulcher, folklorist and state park manager from Clinton, Tennessee
Fulcher is the recipient of the 2019 Bess Lomax Hawes NEA National Heritage Fellowship in recognition of an individual who has made a significant contribution to the preservation and awareness of cultural heritage.
“The National Endowment for the Arts is proud to recognize these artists and the important role they play in our nation’s vibrant cultural landscape,” said Mary Anne Carter, acting chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts. “Whether it’s through storytelling, mentoring, or performance, these Heritage Fellows are committed to sharing their art forms with others.”
You can view the webcast from the 2019 National Heritage Fellowship Concert here.