Josely Carvalho, recipient of the 2021-22 Pollock-Krasner Foundation’s Lee Krasner Award (photograph by João Caldas, image courtesy artist)

The Pollock-Krasner Foundation (PKF) announced today, August 2, that it bestowed the Lee Krasner Award on Brazilian artist and first-time recipient Josely Carvalho. In total, the PKF awarded almost $2.7 million in grants and awards to 106 artists and arts organizations over the past year, with grantees hailing from 16 countries and 16 states. 

The Lee Krasner Award, which recognizes lifetime artistic achievement, was awarded to Carvalho in addition to previous recipients including Laddie John Dill, Rita McBride, and Cheryl Ann Thomas, who continue to enjoy support from the Foundation. Carvalho, a multimedia artist born in 1942 in São Paulo, works with mediums including book art, poetry, performance, video art, installation, olfactory art, and silk screen printing. Many of her works explore political themes, and Carvalho’s practice has often involved political activism. In the late 1970s, she founded the Silkscreen Project at St. Mark’s Church-in-the-Bowery, for which she taught members of the community with little experience with silkscreen printing how to produce political banners. She has also focalized the connections between New York and Rio de Janeiro, between which she splits her time, to political ends. In the 1980s, she was an active participant in Artists’ Call Against US Intervention in Central America and organized a show on reproductive rights that featured women artists from Brazil and the United States in dialogue.

In January, Beili Liu was named the winner of the Pollock Prize for Creativity, a $50,000 prize awarded in support of Liu’s sculptural installation and performance series Dreams of the High North: Between Survival and Belonging, which will be on view in the summer of next year at Norwegian gallery Hå Gamle Prestegard. The PKF revealed that Liu also received the Brian Wall Foundation Grant for Sculptors, an additional $25,000 award administered by the PKF.

The PKF was founded in 1985, the year after Krasner died, to provide financial support to emerging and established artists. “As we continue to support Lee Krasner’s legacy, our 2021–22 grant and award recipients illustrate the Foundation’s philanthropy thanks to the generosity of Krasner herself,” Ronald D. Spencer, CEO of the Pollock-Krasner Foundation, said in a statement. “She understood how important it is to give artists the funding they need to continue to create new work, and we are proud to expand the opportunities available to our recipients through support for their exhibitions and residency programs.”

Jasmine Liu is a former staff writer for Hyperallergic. Originally from the San Francisco Bay Area, she studied anthropology and mathematics at Stanford University.