DeAnna Michele Anderson Selected as Katherine Dunham Fellow
Arts Administration and Management
Regional Arts Commission
The Regional Arts Commission (RAC) has awarded the 2016 Katherine Dunham Fellowship to DeAnna Michele Anderson, a freelance fine artist, photographer and graduate of St. Louis Community College-Forest Park.
Named in honor of the late Katherine Dunham, dancer, choreographer and activist, the fellowship was created and is funded by Sara and Jack Burke to give African Americans an opportunity to explore, gain experience, be mentored in the field of arts administration, and achieve success working at cultural institutions. The fellowship was named as a tribute to Sara Burke’s mentor Katherine Dunham, with whom she studied dance in East St. Louis.
The Fellowship, funded in partnership with the Regional Arts Commission provides a $3,000 stipend and other opportunities which includes attendance to a national arts administration conference.
“The importance of this fellowship is truly significant. The field of arts administration has been fairly limited for people of color who are interested in managing arts and cultural institutions. This fellowship helps to establish a pipeline to increase racial and cultural diversity that best reflects our audiences and the communities that support these institutions,” explains Felicia Shaw, executive director of the Regional Arts Commission.
For Sara Burke, a RAC Commissioner, the Katherine Dunham fellowship is already achieving its mission. “Since the inception of this fellowship, we now have five graduates of the program who are doing incredible work in the arts in St. Louis! Providing access and opportunity is what we are about. It’s also gratifying that our KD Fellows are helping each other to achieve career success. We anticipate that a growing network of Katherine Dunham Fellows will provide important support for African Americans pursuing careers in arts management,” said Burke.
Anderson, an honors graduate who recently received an Associate of Arts in photography, is looking forward to exploring the field of arts administration. “I am thrilled at the opportunity to be named this year’s Katherine Dunham Fellow. I strongly believe the arts have the ability to connect and heal communities. This fellowship will help me to further explore how I might inspire, motivate, change and heal this amazing, artistic city,” said Anderson.
Anderson has exhibited her photographs in several studios and galleries throughout St. Louis to include Open Studies STL at The Luminary, Arcade Tours, Art at the Met and various others. She was featured in a collaborative show on St. Louis Street Photographers at The International Photography Hall of Fame and Museum. In addition to her associate’s degree, Anderson holds a BS in nursing. Prior to receiving her fine arts degree, Anderson worked as a registered nurse. She went on to teach at a local nursing school and for SSM Health’s Perinatal Outreach Program. Combining her interests in perinatal care and passion for photography, she has created a fine arts newborn photography studio located in St. Louis’ mid-town arts district, Grand Center.
For more information about the Katherine Dunham Fellowship, visit www.racstl.org.
About the Regional Arts Commission www.racstl.org
The Regional Arts Commission (RAC) is at the forefront of efforts to transform St. Louis into a more vibrant, creative and economically thriving community by elevating the vitality, value and visibility of the arts. As the largest annual funder of the arts in the region, since its inception in 1985, RAC has awarded more than 6,300 grants totaling over $84 million to support nonprofit arts, individual artists, cultural organizations, consortiums and programs. Directed by a board of 15 commissioners appointed by the chief executives of St. Louis City and County, RAC is a pivotal force in the continuing development and marketing of the arts in the region. www.racstl.org. Follow us on FACEBOOK at Regional Arts Commission or TWITTER at RACStLouis.