This summer we at the Harpo Foundation have been focusing our efforts on the development of an exciting new grant initiative. Since pausing our New Work Project Grant for 2023, we have been rethinking the ways in which the Foundation can more directly support contemporary Native artists and their work beyond our current Harpo Foundation Native American Residency at Vermont Studio Center. To that end, we convened a 10-person advisory council of Native artists, curators, and funders to help inform the direction of this new program.

Over the course of 3 small-group discussions with the advisory council, moderated by our summer Studio Institute Research & Development intern Jaiden Sánchez (Tohono O’odham Nation), we were able to elucidate some of the challenges and barriers faced by contemporary Native artists and strategize on how best to supplement and extend the current opportunities and funding models available. With these fruitful discussions and the insightful feedback from our advisory council in mind, we continue to develop our new grant initiative and look forward to sharing more as this program takes shape!

For full transcripts of the advisory council discussions, please click here.


We extend our humble thanks and appreciation to our incredibly talented and perceptive advisors:

  • Luzene Hill (Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians)
  • Visual Artist 
  • Jordan Ann Craig (Northern Cheyenne)
  • Visual Artist / Painter
  • Ryan Rice (Mohawk of Kahnawake, Quebec)
  • Executive Director + Curator, Indigenous Art at Onsite Gallery at OCAD University 
  • Reuben Roqueñi (Yaqui/Mayo/Chicanx)
  • Executive Director, Portland Institute for Contemporary Art
  • Kathleen Ash-Milby (Navajo Nation Jordan Craig, Visual Artist (Northern Cheyenne)
  • Curator of Native American Art, Portland Art Museum
  • Dr. Lara M. Evans (Cherokee Nation)
  • Vice-President, Programs, First Peoples Fund 
  • Ishi Glinsky (Tohono O’odham Nation)
  • Visual Artist
  • Patsy Phillips (Cherokee)
  • Director, IAIA Museum of Contemporary Native Arts
  • Dorene Red-Cloud (Oglala Sioux Tribe of Pine Ridge)
  • Curator of Native American Art, Eiteljorg Museum 
  • John Haworth (Cherokee Nation)
  • Senior Executive Emeritus at Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian