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Salt Lake City Mayor’s Artists Awards honor art educators, visual artists, museum initiative and a rock n’ roll camp

Salt Lake City Mayor Jackie Biskupski is pleased to announce the winners of the 2019 Mayor’s Artists Awards, which will be presented in conjunction with the Utah Arts Festival on Friday, June 21 at 7:30 p.m. at Washington Square. 

A Utah Arts Festival tradition for more than 25 years, the Mayor’s Artist Awards recognize individuals and organizations who have made an important and positive contribution to the creative arts and the wider Salt Lake City community.

“Art is important in our community life because it connects us,” Mayor Biskupski said. “It transcends our differences, offers us a window into our collective cultures and expands our understanding of the world. It is my honor to recognize these individuals and organizations for the contributions they have made to our city.” 

For 2019, the awards categories have shifted to highlight artists who have engaged in processes that amplify the City’s priorities, including equality, affordable housing, sustainability and more, Kristian Anderson, the senior advisor for arts and culture in the Mayor’s Office said.

“We believe there is a ton of meaningful work being done in the arts community that dovetail into these with these categories and their impact deserves to be highlighted,” Anderson said.

The award-winning Utah Arts Festival is the state’s largest outdoor multi-disciplinary arts event, drawing some 70,000 to downtown Salt Lake City each June.

The festival’s mission is to enhance the quality of life in Utah’s capital city through multi-disciplinary programming that promotes the work of artists, cultivates an appreciation of the fine arts, while encouraging and supporting innovation and non-traditional artistic expression in a variety of mediums.while cultivating an appreciation of the fine arts.

The 43rd annual event begins Thursday, June 20 and continues through Sunday, June 23, 2019 from noon to 11 p.m. each day on Library and Washington squares. 

The 2019 Mayor’s Award Recipients are: 


A graduate architecture program at the University of Utah, DesignBuildBLUFF immerses students in hands-on, cross-cultural experiences through partnerships with the rural and native communities in the Four Corners region of San Juan County. 

Margaret Willis

An artist, teacher, outdoor enthusiast, yogi, and gardener, Margaret Willis loves to experiment with a range of mediums. From oil-painted portraits, to upcycle plastic bag crowns, intricate mandalas and giant glue and fabric monsters, Willis work offers us insights into how she sees the world. 

Utah Museum of Fine Arts, ACME Initiative

The goal of the Art, Community, Museum Education Initiative (ACME) is to expand and rethink the role that museums play in public life. ACME ‘s three programs — ACME Lab, ACME Sessions, and ACME Scholars — aim to transform the way the Utah Museum of Fine Arts connects with and learns from the community. Over the past three years, ACME has increased community access to the arts, earning the program both local and national support. 

Rock n’ Roll Camp for Girls

The annual Rock n’ roll Camp for Girls seeks to empower girls, transgender and gender non-conforming youths through music education, collaboration, and performance. Part of the worldwide teaches, the week-long Salt Lake City camp teaches girls and other marginalized youths to opportunity to learn an instrument, write music, form a band and perform for a live audience.

Ed Napia

Eruera “Ed” Napia was born into the Te Whiu, Te Popoto, and Te Honihoni subtribes of the Ngapuhi Tribe from Aotearoa-New Zealand. Napia’s art is his autobiography. His unique and original style of handmade pottery and clay sculpture represent the various stages of his life, from his New Zealand childhood, to his time in Hawaii and his move to Utah. 

What:                   Utah Arts Festival Mayor’s Artists Awards presentation

When:                  Friday, June 21, 2019, 7:30 p.m.

Where:                 Utah Arts Festival Main Stage
Washington Square, Salt Lake City & County Building

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