Artist Initiative

Project Details by Fiscal Year
2013 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
Fund Source
Arts & Cultural Heritage Fund
Farida Hughes
Recipient Type
Start Date
March 2013
End Date
February 2014
Activity Type
Counties Affected
Project Overview
Artist Initiative
Project Details
Hughes will complete a new suite of 20 paintings and conclude research in nontoxic oil painting mediums and methods, documenting it in a bi-weekly blog on safe practices for oil painters. There will be an Art-A-Whirl kickoff event for the blog and a public exhibition of these new works.
Competitive Grant Making Body
Board Members and Qualifications
Judson Bemis Jr.: Actor, arts administrator, founder and principal of Clere Consulting. Secretary, Minnesota State Arts Board.; Ardell Brede: Mayor of Rochester, elected 2002.; Peggy Burnet: Businesswoman, art collector, and community volunteer. Chair of the Nominating Committee, Smithsonian National Board. Trustee, Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden. Vice Chair, Minnesota State Arts Board.; Michael Charron: Dean of the School of the Arts, Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota. Vice Chair, Minnesota State Arts Board.; Sean Dowse: Executive director, Sheldon Theatre. Board member for Minnesota Music Coalition, Minnesota Citizens for the Arts, and Anderson Center for Interdisciplinary Studies.; John Gunyou, City manager, Minnetonka.; Benjamin Klipfel: Board member, Minnesota State Arts Board. Executive Director, Alexandria Area Arts Association, Inc. Director and arts educator.; Ellen McInnis: Director of Twin Cities government relations, Wells Fargo. Member of Bottineau Boulevard Partnership. Chair, Minnesota State Arts Board.; Pamela Perri: Executive vice president, Builders Association of Minnesota.; Margaret Rapp: Former educator, Saint Paul Academy and Summit School. Officer at-large, Minnesota State Arts Board.; Anton Treuer: Professor of Ojibwe, Bemidji State University.
Advisory Group Members and Qualifications
Avye Alexandres: Visual artist, performance maker; Amy Cass: Pottery instructor, The Crossings. Member, Minnesota Women Ceramic Artists. Artist and part-time product potter, Red Wing Stoneware.; Anne Dugan: Curator and interim director, Duluth Art Institute. Founder and co-director, Free Range Film Festival.; Jennifer Jenkins: Artist, prop and wardrobe stylist; Mary Ann Papanek-Miller: Professor and chair of the department of art, media, and design, DePaul University. Mixed media artist.; Peyton Russell: Artist, teacher and community leader; founder, Daskarone and Juxtaposition Arts; Robin Schwartzman: Printmaker, Adjunct instructor, University of Minnesota; Kelli Sinner: Associate professor of ceramics, Minnesota State University, Moorhead
Conflict of Interest Disclosed
Legal Citation / Subdivision
Laws of Minnesota 2011, First Special Session, chapter 6, article 4, section 2, subdivision 3
Appropriation Language

ACHF Arts Access

2013 Fiscal Year Funding Amount
Other Funds Leveraged
Direct expenses
Administration costs
Number of full time equivalents funded
Proposed Measurable Outcome(s)

Advance painting and compositional skills and techniques with non-toxic, oil mediums that I will learn about and develop through my research and inquiry. Achieved effects and satisfactory working time with the mixed paints and new recipes for mediums will be a basis for evaluation. I will also collect viewer feedback in person at exhibition and online from blog. 2: Expand to a greater audience throughout the state. Reach other artists statewide through bi-weekly blog online. Track numbers of visitors to studio event, exhibition and blog-site and keep updated mailing list. Track visits to artist website after promotions. Speak with studio/gallery visitors and allow them to share their own stories after viewing my work.

Measurable Outcome(s)

I was able to advance my compositional skills and techniques through the research and development of a painting medium that is less toxic than turpentine or Odorless Mineral Spirits based mediums. This recipe is based on the use of Oil of Spike Lavender which I discovered as a solvent through doing the research enabled by this grant. The new medium that I developed dries slower: it allows more flexibility in working time, more translucent layers, and allows color to be manipulated in interesting ways. I was unable to do these things with alkyd mediums (a less toxic alternative but one which dries very quickly and has some other hindering qualities). I gauged my success by my own satisfaction and audience reaction. Studio and exhibition visitors responded well to the new depth of color and the more intricate painting surfaces. I was fortunate enough to sell a very large piece right off the studio wall the week it was completed. This told me that my efforts were fruitful. 2: I had hoped to be able to expand my audience reach by exhibiting in other areas outside of the Twin Cities. Though I was unable to secure an exhibition in space outside of the metro area during the grant period I do feel that I successfully reached more Minnesotans with my work based on some of the media attention around my events as well as with my blog that tracked the project results. By keeping a mailing list, tracking visitor numbers to my studio and exhibition events, blog site and Facebook Page I was able to see that my reach had grown during the grant period. I was able to connect with other artists statewide, nationally and internationally, through my bi-weekly blog mostly evidenced by the location from where the responses/questions were coming from. Website visits turned out to be an unreliable judge as they typically spiked when there was press related to a show but not necessarily related to grant activity.

Description of Funds
Source of Additional Funds

Other, local or private

Project Manager
First Name
Last Name
Organization Name
Farida Hughes
(651) 493-6885
Administered By
Administered by

Griggs Midway Building, Suite 304,
540 Fairview Avenue North,
St. Paul, MN 55104

(651) 539-2650 or toll-free (800) 866-2787
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