a grid of sixteen artist portraits

Top row, left to right: Peng Wu and Zoe Cinel (CarryOn Homes); Cecilia Cornejo Sotelo; Constanza Carballo. Second row: Mississippi Dreamers’ Muralshop; Dani Prados; Tom Bierlein and Mike Curran. Third row: Zamara Cuyún; Marcus Young 楊墨, Or (Laura) Levinson (Don’t You Feel It Too? SEED Leadership Cohort); Christopheraaron Deanes. Fourth row: Shun Yong; Za’Nia Coleman; SEE MORE PERSPECTIVE; Jessica Belt Saem Eldahr.

Introducing our next round of incredible grant recipients

Public artists are essential in helping us relate to one another, tell stories, and connect us to the land we are on. Our grant program gives public artists time and space to develop research and locally-connected projects. This year’s incredible grant recipients are planning projects to uplift their communities through storytelling, reclamation, mapping, space activation, and more.

“Forecast’s 2022 grantees demonstrate that public art and artists are essential to claiming space, connecting us to the land we are on, and re-imagining our collective future and shared spaces. Artists continue to face substantial economic and social challenges, and we work diligently to reduce barriers to access for these grants, to uplift artists and culture bearers who represent our entire community. We are inspired by the visionary applications we received from across Minnesota and the Native Nations that share the same geography, and are excited to follow this year’s grantees as they creatively build their practices and the world around us,” says Jen Krava, Forecast’s Director of Programming + New Initiatives. 

We are incredibly proud of the talented group of artists selected to receive Forecast grant funding in 2022. Sixteen artists are recipients of Forecast’s 2022 early- and mid-career grants. A total of $86,000 will support thirteen independent projects, leadership and professional development, risk-taking, multidisciplinary approaches, and collaborative problem solving in the field of public art.

It is with great pleasure that we congratulate the artists selected to receive a total of $86,000 in 2022 Forecast grants:

  • Mid-Career Project Grantees ($10,000 each):
    CarryOn Homes; Cecilia Cornejo Sotelo; Constanza Carballo; Mississippi Dreamers’ Muralshop; Dani Prados 
  • Early-Career Project Grantees ($8,000 each):
    Tom Bierlein and Mike Curran; Zamara Cuyún
  • Mid-Career Professional Development Grantees ($5,000 each):
    Marcus Young 楊墨, Or (Laura) Levinson, and Don’t You Feel It Too? SEED Leadership Cohort; Christopheraaron Deanes 
  • Early-Career Research + Development Grantees ($2,500 each):
    Jessica Belt Saem Eldahr; Za’Nia Coleman; SEE MORE PERSPECTIVE; Shun Yong

We are thrilled for our grantees, and cannot wait to see what they accomplish over the coming year.

It is our value that our applicants, panelists, and grantees reflect the racial, cultural, gender, artistic, physical ability, and geographic diversity of Minnesota and the 11 Native nations that share the same geography, and the stories and perspectives of the artists and communities we serve.

2022 Mid-Career Project Grantees

Supports the creation of a new, publicly accessible, temporary or permanent artwork anywhere in the state of Minnesota by a Minnesota-based mid-career public artist (made possible by funding from McKnight Foundation)

CarryOn Homes
CarryOn Homes and Iraqi Minnesotan Storytelling Project
CarryOn Homes intends to work with Iraqi and American Reconciliation Project (IARP) as their community partner to create a tour exhibition of new photography and storytelling-based artwork. The multi-media installation will be inspired by in-depth interviews with ten Iraqi Minnesotans in both English and Arabic. The exhibition will be designed to be scalable and portable enough to travel to various art spaces in the state for maximum social impact.
Peng Wu was an independent panelist for the Forecast 2021 Mid-Career Grants. Zoe Cinel was part of a team awarded a 2020 Forecast Messages of Hope Mini-Grant.

Cecilia Cornejo Sotelo
Sonic Landscapes of Southern Minnesota
Sonic Landscapes of Southern Minnesota is a sound-mapping website that examines notions of home and belonging from a small-town perspective. Working in collaboration with community members in Northfield and Lanesboro, the site features the residents’ reflections on “home,” along with ambient sounds specific to each town. A deeply evocative experience located in the virtual public space, Sonic Landscapes fosters reflection, connection, and discovery while honoring the vibrant complexity found in small places. 

Constanza Carballo
Second Shift Community Mural Workshop
Constanza Carballo and Second Shift Studio Space will partner to create a community-driven 10-foot by 15-foot mural on an exterior wall of their building that is frequently vandalized with racial slurs. Through this project, they endeavor to 1) strengthen connections between Second Shift and its Payne Avenue neighborhood, and 2) give hands-on experience to two aspiring muralists on how to center community in creative placemaking. 

Mississippi Dreamers’ Muralshop
Mississippi Dreamers’ Muralshop
This mural workshop concept is inspired by the incredible diversity of Minneapolis and Saint Paul’s communities. Mississippi Dreamer’s Muralshop will teach six free classes covering techniques that lead to community based urban artwork and what it means to truly work with communities in ways that empower and revitalize their cultures. The goal is to paint a large-scale mural that represents all the people blessed by this beautiful river and its environment. 

Dani Prados
A Walking Art & History Map of Granite Falls, MN
This project will engage various community members of diverse backgrounds in the creation and distribution of a sustainably produced public walking map of the area, including local lore, art, history from equitable perspectives, walking routes and music for those walks generated from local field recordings.

2022 Early-Career Project Grantees

Supports the creation of a temporary or permanent public artwork anywhere in the state of Minnesota by an early-career Minnesota-based artist (made possible by funding from Jerome Foundation)

Tom Bierlein and Mike Curran
Area of Concern
Through this grant, Bierlein and Curran plan to organize a public program that includes a site-specific installation, community workshops, and a publication centered around the emerald ash borer (EAB)—an insect introduced to Minnesota in 2009 that will soon cause the near-extinction of ash trees. The program will invite artists and audiences to engage with the broader theme of “living through extinction,” expanding perspectives on interrelated issues such as climate change, displacement, and legacies of capitalism and colonialism.

Zamara Cuyún
La Mexicana Ancestros Mural
Located in the heart of the Latinx business district in Minneapolis, this mural will explore the relationships between the Latinx and Native communities connected to this area, focusing on shared experiences with displacement and reifying home, and keeping their heritages for the next generations. Our objective is to create a mural that affirms the identities of the Latinx and Native communities that have connection to the land where Lake street is located and the bridges of shared experience that link them.

2022 Mid-Career Professional Development Grantees

Supports Minnesota-based mid-career artists seeking to expand or advance their careers in the field of public art, through a project idea or participation in career-enhancing activities (made possible by funding from McKnight Foundation)

Marcus Young 楊墨, Or (Laura) Levinson, and Don’t You Feel It Too? SEED Leadership Cohort
DYFIT presents the SEED Program: Dance-as-Activism in Public Space
The public movement practice Don’t You Feel It Too? (DYFIT) plans to explore transforming their 10-person leadership program into an activist dance company. The SEED program engages artist-healer-activists in regular co-learning around embodied decolonization of patterns and relationships. Building an activist dance company will…
+ Create alternative modes of participation at public events
+ Create workshops for the public and partner organizations to increase embodied relationship with self, one another, and land.
Marcus Young 楊墨 was a Forecast 2016 Mid-Career Project Grant recipient.

Christopheraaron Deanes
Industrial porcelain Enamel as Public Art
Christopheraaron Deanes will continue learning about porcelain enamel processes from experts in 2022 and work with them by spending 12 hours of coaching time. He is a public and gallery artist developing continued practices in metal enamel paint. Funds will be allocated toward professional instruction, coaching, demonstrations, supplies, and final pieces. These tutorials will aid in the completion of eight metal enamel panels which will be shown in the African American History Museum in 2023.

2022 Early-Career Research + Development Grantees

Supports early-career artists in public art-related research and development or with the planning phase of freely accessible public art installation or activity in Minnesota (made possible by funding from Jerome Foundation)

Jessica Belt Saem Eldahr
A Mural Celebration of Iraq
This grant will allow Jessica to plan and develop a mural celebrating her community’s culture and presenting Iraqi Minnesotan heritage to the public in collaboration with the Iraqi and American Reconciliation Project. 

Za’Nia Coleman
Exploring Reclaiming “The Outside” with Projection Mapping
This project explores how to reclaim the outside spaces both figuratively and literally that Black Femmes are subjected to by using projection mapping to visualize or give imagery to our worlds. The goal is to experiment with how to visualize the intersections of the archive, Black Folklore, and Black Science Fiction.
Za’Nia Coleman was an independent panelist for the Forecast 2021 mid-career grants.

Projection Mapping Installation and Musical Performance
This grant supports research and development for an ambitious visual/musical experience through projection mapping and live music that highlights the balance of life and death through layers of lyrical and visual symbolism. The project will play like an hour-long music video, with up to 15 songs and musical and spoken word interludes. The artist will stretch the bounds of projection mapping to explore narratives more akin to a feature length art film.
SEE MORE PERSPECTIVE was a 2020 Forecast Messages of Hope Mini-Grant awardee.

Shun Yong
Through this grant, Shun Yong will research Asian climbers in the Twin Cities to create new photography and storytelling-based artwork. He seeks to learn why Asian climbers climb, what role Asian climbers play in this traditional white sport, and to search for the ratio of Asian climbers in the gym and outdoors. Additionally, he wants to observe types of materials that are suitable for displaying photos outdoors, as well as the best location to display the photo story.

An independent panel selected the 2022 grantees 

Forecast follows a rigorous policy on the disclosure and management of conflicts of interest to ensure the integrity of the grant program. 

This year’s panelists are:

Graci Horne, Naomi Ko, L. Renée, Adrienne Bennett, and Jordan Webber.
Naomi Ko was a Forecast 2020 Early-Career Research + Development Grantee.


These grants are made possible by generous funding from the McKnight Foundation and the Jerome Foundation.

Read more about the grantees and Forecast’s support for artists.