FAAM Contributing Editor Wins Rabkin Prize

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Stacy Pratt

Stacy Pratt, PhD (Mvskoke), in front of a Woody Crumbo (Citizen Potawatomi) mural at the Philbrook Museum of Art, Tulsa, 2022.

Stacy Pratt, PhD (Mvskoke), is one of eight visual art journalists to win the 2022 Rabkin Prize. The Dorothea and Leo Rabkin Foundation provides this annual award of $50,000 to “the essential visual art journalist working in [their]  part of the country.”

“It is an incredible honor to write for and about Indigenous art and artists. I am so grateful to First American Art Magazine for providing a forum for ideas and reflections on Native art,” says Pratt. She acknowledges, “I am humbled to be one of the writers whose words will be part of Native art history archives for our descendants. I truly love the work that I do, and I am honored to be recognized by the Rabkin Foundation.”

Based in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Stacy Pratt earned her doctoral degree in creating writing from the University of Southern Mississippi. She taught writing in New York and Oklahoma before becoming a full-time writer, including serving as a staff writer for Sweet Adelines International. Since 2017, she has contributed articles to FAAM. Pratt has served as a web editor and is now a contributing editor.

This prestigious award came as a shock. Pratt says, “I was completely surprised to be nominated for the Rabkin Prize. There are so many incredible art writers, and I think of myself as a reliable workhorse of a writer. To have my writing and work judged suitable for this prize is extremely humbling and inspiring.”

Rabkin Foundation

Rabkin Foundation logoThe Dorothea and Leo Rabkin Foundation, based in Portland, Maine, launched this prize in 2017. Leo Rabkin (1919–2015) was a painter, printmaker, and sculptor who exhibited for six decades. His wife, Dorothea Rabkin (1921–2008), escaped Berlin after hiding with her sister during World War II. The couple lived in Chelsea, New York, and created an historic collection of American folk and outsider art.

The other seven 2022 Rabkin prize winners are Shana Nys Dambrot (Los Angeles), Bryn Evans (Decatur, Georgia), Joe Fyfe (New York City), Peter L’Official (Harlem and Annandale-on-Hudson, New York), Darryl F. Ratcliff, II (Dallas), Jeanne Claire van Ryzin (Austin);, and Margo Vansynghel (Seattle). The jurors were Sasha Anawal, founding director of the University of Southern California Getty arts journalism program; Eric Gibson, Arts in Review editor and editor of the Leisure and Arts Page of the Wall Street Journal; and Paul Schmelzer, founder of The Ostracon.

Pratt says, “I hope other Native writers of all ages will consider art journalism, criticism, and other genres. Many non-Natives have written about our art, and we need more of our unique perspectives in the conversation and historical record.”

Upcoming Plans

Amber DuBoise-Shepard, Stacy Pratt, and America Meredith, NSU

Stacy Pratt (Mvskoke) center with Amber DuBoise-Shepherd (Navajo/Sac & Fox/Prairie Potawatomi) and America Meredith (Cherokee Nation) at Northeastern State University, 2022.

Pratt’s mother and aunts, the Fife Sisters, are all scholars and visual artists. They will be featured in Matrilineal: Legacies of Our Mothers at the IAIA Museum of Contemporary Native Arts in Santa Fe. Pratt contributed to the exhibition text, and her sister Shelley Patrick (Mvskoke) is painting an original mural to accompany the exhibition. Curated by Laura Marshall Clark (Mvskoke), Matrilineal will run from July 29, 2022, to January 15, 2023.

Pratt will join a roundtable discussion hosted by FAAM, “Currents in Indigenous Art: Native Writers Discuss Native Art.” The talk will take place on Thursday, August 18, 10:30 am to 12:00 pm, at the Ralph T. Coe Center for the Arts. The discussion is free and open to the public.

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