ON THE BOARDS CURATORIAL FELLOWSHIP 

ON THE BOARDS CURATORIAL FELLOWSHIP 

Shaping the future of curation.

The On the Boards Curatorial Fellow has the opportunity to conceive, develop, and implement designated performances, commissioned projects, discursive public programs, and publications for On the Boards. Fellows receive mentorship, on-the-job training, and can connect with a national and international network of curatorial and producers. The fellow will collaborate with Artistic Director Rachel Cook to develop, research, and realize performances, programs, and events that support and express the artistic vision. On the Boards fulfills its mission by investing in artists near and far, and connecting them with audiences interested in forward-thinking art and ideas.  

The Curatorial Fellowship is an important opportunity to bring new voices to the On the Boards performance scene, while fostering the next generation of innovative performance curators.  

Click here to read about our inaugural Curatorial Fellow Berette S. Macaulay.

Read the full press release here.

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The Curatorial Fellowship at On the Boards has been incubating behind the scenes since Artistic Director Rachel Cook’s arrival in 2018. In recent years, On the Boards has created unique curatorial opportunities and worked with several excellent artists in different creative capacities. Seattle University Master of Fine Arts in Arts Leadership students Ellen McGivern and Linnea Ingalls both served as Curatorial Interns. Seattle based artists, Eli Steffen and Jordan Macintosh-Hougham, completed project-based internships centered around Northwest New Works Festival and OntheBoards.tv. Dani Tirrell, an artist commissioned and presented numerous times at On the Boards, has worked with OtB in several different capacities over the years, including as a part of the Ambassador Program, a curator of an Open Studio program, and as the co-curator of Solo: A Festival of Dance 2020. In 2020 four artists co-curated the Performance Lab program: KT Kusmaul, Matt Aguayo, HATLO, and Dakota Camacho. In 2019 and 2020 On the Boards began a Curatorial Reading Group with Minna Lee and Fiore Grey this year. All this work from these incredible individuals and creative thinkers supported the creation of the Curatorial Fellowship, officially launched in September 2020. We deeply thank each of them for their contribution to the organization’s artistic growth. 

On the Boards considers the fellowship initiative as one step toward implementing structures, policies, and practices for inclusive decision-making and other forms of institutional power-sharing. The Curatorial Fellowship will be an active part of shaping On the Boards’ next chapter and will contribute to its exciting creative future.    

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In 2020 On the Boards received 35 applications and 5 finalists were selected and awarded a fee to explore their Fellowship proposals more fully. Each finalist submitted a curatorial idea they wanted to realize along with possible participating artists and to describe how the audience would engage with their idea.   

2020 Curatorial Fellowship Finalists 

  • Angel Alviar-Langley 
  • Brian Dang 
  • Leigh Marie Marshall 
  • Matt Sherrill  

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 Community Response    

Working with On the Boards was a really powerful experience for me. The mentorship I received from the whole staff really opened up what I thought curation could be and exposed me a breadth of new artists and ideas. The faith Rachel showed to my vision and her willingness to engage tough questions allowed me to grow as a curator and an artist.”- Eli Steffen, Artist and former OtB Curatorial Intern   

In a time of unprecedented separation and course correction it is essential to uphold our mission of connecting artists to diverse communities. Introspection, study, discussion and sharing institutional knowledge and resources maintains our commitment to artists in a time when live presentations aren't possible.  We’re invigorated by the vision of the fellowships and excited to share the multiplicity of perspectives they will bring.”- Davora Lindner, OtB Board President, Founder Prairie Underground    

Speaking as a Board member, it's exciting to see this program develop into a paid position that has the potential to make much needed change in arts leadership. I hope the Curatorial Fellowship program can be a model for meaningful ways to nurture new voices in curatorial practice, both at On the Boards and throughout the arts landscape.” -Ruth Keating Lockwood, former OtB Board President, Director Oxbow    

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Panelists 

Anna Gallagher-Ross is Co-Artistic Director at Fusebox. The organization is most known for its annual Fusebox Festival that features local, national, and international artists exploring the intersection of live performance and other art forms. A graduate of the Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College, Anna has over a decade of experience in the curation and production of the performing, visual, and literary arts. Her writing and interviews have appeared in Art Papers, C Magazine, the Walker Reader, Theater Magazine, as well as numerous exhibition catalogues. Anna is co-editor of Imagined Theatres Journal Issue 5: Curating Performance. She serves on the advisory board of UNESCO Creative Cities Austin, and Sightlines Magazine for Arts and Culture as well as panels for organizations such as the MAP Fund, Creative Capital, Apex Art Foundation, Charlotte Street Arts Foundation, among others.  

Edgar Miramontes, Deputy Executive Director & Curator of the Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater (REDCAT), serves on the curatorial and management team for REDCAT’s international, national and regional programming with an emphasis in dance, theater and performance.  Miramontes was the co-curator and co-producer of the Getty-led Pacific Standard Time Festival: Live Art LA/LA, an international celebration of art and performance, with more than 200 Latin American and Latinx artists supported by a major grant from the Getty Foundation. He served on the curatorial team for the National Performance Network’s Performing Americas Program and has participated as a panelist for the National Endowment for the Arts, Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation, Network of Ensemble Theaters, L.A. Cultural Affairs Department, L.A. County Arts Commission, National Performance Network, and as a reviewer for MAP Fund and Creative Capital. He is currently on the Board of the National Performance Network and is an advisory committee member of The Japan Foundation, New York and New England Foundation for the Arts's National Theater Project.  

Eli Steffen (they/them) is a speculative artist working in the fields of theater, visual art, and curation. Their latest line of research is an investigation of queer grieving, ritual, and visibility. Generally, Eli’s work focuses on the intersection of communal narratives, cultural norms, and systemic violence.  

Tara Aisha Willis is a dancer, PhD candidate in Performance Studies at New York University, and Associate Curator in Performance & Public Practice at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago. She recently held a NYPL Jerome Robbins Dance Division Research Fellowship and is an editorial collective member of Women & Performance. Former co-managing editor for TDR/The Drama Review, she co-edited a special issue of The Black Scholar with Thomas F. DeFrantz and the performance writing project, Marking the Occasion (Wendy's Subway, 2020), with Jaime Shearn Coan. Willis performed in a collaboration between Will Rawls and Claudia Rankine (2016-19) and in the 2016 “Bessie” award-winning performance by The Skeleton Architecture. She was the founding administrator of Movement Research's Artists of Color Council and a member of the phase 1 working group for “Creating New Futures," the COVID-19 responsive guidelines for ethical dance presenting.