Traditional arts, also called the folk arts, are those art forms practiced by a group of people with a common learning experience. The folk arts are learned informally and are often passed on from generation to generation.
A master artist is usually a person who has spent most of his life learning and practicing a traditional art form. Qualified apprentices are people who are somewhat skilled in the same art form.
For centuries, skills and trades have been passed down from master craftsmen to apprentices who work under their supervision. By relegating the more basic tasks to the apprentice, the master craftsman could concentrate on further refining his or her art while increasing production. The apprentice learned not only the craft, but also how to teach it to his/her own apprentices. This time-honored system assures the perpetuation of these skills through successive generations and preserves specific aspects of folk culture.
General Guidelines for Apprenticeships
Priority is given to apprentices who are members of the community whose artistic traditions they propose to study. Apprentices should already possess at least an intermediate competence in the art form. They must also be willing to share the skills gained from their apprenticeship with others, especially those within their own cultural community.
Special consideration is given to master folk artists whose work might not continue in their community without significant support and encouragement.
The program's aim is to represent a broad spectrum of artistic disciplines while reflecting the cultural, ethnic, gender and geographic diversity of Texas. Awardees should be Texas residents.
If you have any additional questions, please contact Texas Folklife.