The Foundation for Contemporary Arts (FCA), a nonprofit arts organization founded by John Cage and Jasper Johns, has announced its 2016 awards to artists.
Composer Joan La Barbara is the latest recipient of their biennial John Cage Award. This prestigious $50,000 award was established in 1992 in honor of the late composer. The selection is made from among invited nominations. Previous recipients of the John Cage Award have primarily been composers, including Robert Ashley, David Behrman, Earle Brown, Takehisa Kosugi, Gordon Mumma, Pauline Oliveros, David Tudor, Christian Wolff, and—most recently—Phill Niblock. However, it has also been awarded to conceptual artist William Anastasi, video artist Charles Atlas, and digital artist Paul Kaiser.
In this NewMusicBox interview from 2006 (you can read the entire transcript here), La Barbara acknowledged that she has always followed advice that John Cage once gave her: “He said to me one time, ‘I always try to say yes when people ask me to do things because I never know when I might be surprised by the outcome.’”
The latest recipient of the FCA’s annual Robert Rauschenberg Award, which includes an unrestricted cash prize of $35,000, is sound artist and visual artist Jennie C. Jones. The three previous awardees were choreographer Trisha Brown and composers Elodie Lauten and Eve Beglarian.
As part of the 2016 awards cycle, FCA has also announced 14 grants to artists in the disciplines of dance, music/sound, performance art/theatre, poetry, and visual arts, each of whom will also receive $35,000. The awardees in the music/sound category are Ashley Fure, William Winant, and Nate Wooley.
Complete details on all the 2016 awardees are posted on the FCA website.