Brandon artist wins The Vermont Prize for Afrofuturistic art

Visible artist, graffiti scholar, and educator Will Kasso Condry of Brandon has been picked as the initial receiver of The Vermont Prize, a new endeavor aimed at celebrating and supporting the best visible artwork remaining built in Vermont right now.

A collaborative initiative of the Brattleboro Museum & Art Middle (BMAC), Burlington Metropolis Arts (BCA), The Recent of Stowe and the Hall Artwork Basis in Studying, The Vermont Prize is juried by a single agent from each and every of the four companion corporations and 1 unique guest juror.

This year’s guest juror, Kelly Baum, the Cynthia Hazen Polsky and Leon Polsky Curator of Modern Artwork at The Metropolitan Museum of Artwork, mentioned “Will Kasso Condry impresses in every way. Premised on deeply held moral beliefs, his visually spectacular, really chromatic, labor-intense drawings and paintings get their inspiration from Afrofuturism, a philosophy that privileges Black company, creativeness, and excellence, forging a political and aesthetic language that serves as a corrective to earlier and present wrongs. Condry is an exceptional artist doing remarkable get the job done in and for Vermont.”

“I use my artwork to weave the wealthy and layered stories of the African diaspora as an Afrofuturistic artist and educator,” Condry wrote in an artist assertion. “Be it fantastical or rooted in our existing actuality, my operate displays the multitude of dimensions and experiences Black persons navigate. I want the observer to be transported within just a universe crammed with infinite choices to have an understanding of that the Black creativeness is our crucial to liberation, and that Black joy is the root that binds it all.”

Born and elevated in Trenton, New Jersey, Condry examined fine artwork and illustration at The School of New Jersey as a very first-generation college scholar. He furthered his instruction with graffiti artist Daniel “POSE 2” Hopkins and muralist Dave McShane of Mural Arts Philadelphia. For more than 20 years, he has worked with young folks by way of a wide range of neighborhood organizations, which includes the Boys & Ladies Club and SAGE Coalition. He has served as artist-in-residence at Princeton College and Middlebury School. With Jennifer Herrera Condry and Alexa Herrera Condry, he launched Juniper Imaginative Arts, a Vermont-centered Black and Dominican family members collective that “uses visible artwork to uplift the voices of persons on the margins.” His function has been proven in solo and group exhibitions, and his murals have been commissioned by community, personal, and corporate clients in New Jersey, California, and Vermont.

The 4 jurors symbolizing the partner corporations were being BCA Curator and Director of Exhibitions Heather Ferrell, BMAC Director of Exhibitions Sarah Freeman, Hall Artwork Foundation Director Maryse Model, and The Present-day Govt Director Rachel Moore.

By Alexa Herrera Condry
Brandon resident Will Kasso Condry was honored for his expressing society in artwork.

“It was an honor to serve as 1 of the jurors for the inaugural calendar year of The Vermont Prize,” Ferrell explained. “I was impressed by the breadth of imaginative talent, as very well as the level of creative excellence represented by the diversity of apps the jury reviewed. The Prize serves a critical will need in supporting and elevating the job of artists in our neighborhood.”

Freeman and Brand also expressed appreciation for the prospect to look at function by talented artists from throughout Vermont.

“I was thrilled to understand about a great deal of artists who are new to me, and I look forward to observing even far more in the foreseeable future,” Freeman said.

Brand name additional, “The point that it was this sort of a difficult choice speaks volumes about the caliber of the artists doing the job in Vermont right now.”

The Vermont Prize is awarded to one artist every year. The winner is selected on the basis of artistic excellence, irrespective of job phase. The winner gets $5,000, and their perform is showcased and archived at vermontprize.org and on social media. Applications are approved from visual artists at this time dwelling and functioning in Vermont. The Vermont Prize is open up to men and women as nicely as collaborating artists. Artists operating in any visible medium are welcome to implement. The following application deadline is March 31, 2023.