Fellowships Overview


MCBA/Jerome Book Arts Fellowships Application Call

Application Cycle Open: August 1, 2019 – September 3, 2019
Application Deadline: Tuesday, September 3, 2019 at 11:59pm

Information Sessions
Monday, August 5 at 12:00 PM
Thursday, August 15 at 6:00 PM
Thursday, August 22 at 6:00 PM

All information sessions are hosted at Minnesota Center for Book Arts

Applicants are welcome to e-mail Torey Erin with any questions about the application process at terin@MNbookarts.org

MCBA/Jerome Book Arts Fellowship Overview

Minnesota Center for Book Arts (MCBA) is a visual arts nonprofit organization that supports creative expression through traditional and contemporary book arts, including papermaking, bookbinding, and letterpress printing. MCBA’s philosophy and artistic vision challenges its artist community to think beyond the traditional notion of the “book.” Today, books can be bound and unbound, fabricated into sculptures, interpreted as metaphor, experienced as installation or performance, and interacted with virtually. What unites this varied work is a focus on the interdisciplinary expression of narrative.

The MCBA/Jerome Book Arts Fellowship, administered by Minnesota Center for Book Arts (MCBA), is made possible by the generous support of the Jerome Foundation. The MCBA/Jerome Book Arts Fellowship is open to all Minnesota based early career artists whose primary artistic expression is in the book form. The goal of the program is designed to advance early career book artists both critically and creatively in their practice. MCBA and the Jerome Foundation welcome applications from artists representing diverse cultural perspectives.

The Jerome Foundation has adopted new language and guidelines surrounding the definition of an early career/emerging artist. The new emphasis is on funding artists who are at a relatively early and formative stage in their career with the hope of providing them support within the book arts field.

This MCBA administered fellowship program uses an independent jury of three arts professionals to competitively award three fellowships. The fellowship runs from October 2019 – October 2020 and includes:

  • $5,000 stipend for proposed project (this may cover materials, production costs, time, and travel)
  • 24/7 access to MCBA studios and equipment use
  • 3 group critiques with MCBA staff and guest critics
  • One year MCBA Membership
  • Technical support from MCBA staff
  • Fellowship exhibition in MCBA’s Main Gallery in Fall 2020

The Jerome Foundation

Since 1985, the Jerome Foundation has helped artists push the boundaries of contemporary book arts by supporting the creation of new work. Book arts projects funded by thirteen series of Fellowships and seven series of Mentorships range from exquisitely crafted fine press volumes and sculptural books to documented performances and one-of-a-kind installations that “break the bindings” and redefine conventional notions of book form.

The Jerome Foundation, created by artist and philanthropist Jerome Hill (1905–1972), promotes a dynamic culture through support for early career/emerging vocational artists to create new work and for nonprofit arts organizations that offer programs, services and activities for such artists based in the state of Minnesota or the five boroughs of New York City.

The Foundation’s core values, which we strive to model in our practice as grant makers and to support in our grantees, are:

Diversity: We consciously embrace diversity in the broadest sense. We support a diverse range of artists and organizations, including but not limited to those of diverse cultures, races, sexual identities, genders, generations, aesthetics, points of view, physical abilities, and missions. We support a diverse range of artistic disciplines and forms, created in a variety of contexts and for different audiences.

Innovation/Risk: We support artists who and organizations that push the boundaries of their respective disciplines, and we applaud unconventional approaches to solving problems.

Humility: We work for artists (rather than the reverse) and believe that artists and organizations are the best authorities to define their needs and challenges—an essential humility reflective of Jerome Hill, our founder. The artists we support embrace their roles as part of a larger community of artists and citizens, and consciously work with a sense of purpose, whether aesthetic, social or both.

Artists whose primary work engages the book form and/or processes within book arts (letterpress printing, papermaking, bookbinding, paper decoration, screen printing, design, and related arts).

Past Jerome Fellows