Texas Folklife is in the process of revitalizing our longstanding Apprenticeships in the Folk & Traditional Arts program. Apprenticeship Application and info sheet will be available late Summer 2015. Please check back with us soon for updates.
Texas Folklife's Apprenticeships in the Folk Arts program encourages the continuation of Texas' traditional arts by providing grants to master artists for the training of qualified apprentices. The Apprenticeship Program connects master artists to skilled apprentices who receive training in a traditional art form. Teaching an apprentice gives the master artist the opportunity to refine his craft and gives the apprentice a chance to learn an art form that they, in turn, can teach others. Apprenticeships breathe life into the traditional arts and foster the continuation of that art form.
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 master artists whose expertise and years of practice demonstrate the richness of their cultural community and the depth of their cultural experience. The master artist should be one of the finest representatives of his or her community's cultural traditions.
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.