The Artist Laureate program was launched more than a quarter of a century ago, when Silicon Valley Creates was known as Arts Council of Santa Clara County. From its inception in 1988, the “then called” Artist Fellowship program was unique in two ways: Awards were unrestricted and applicants were not required to be residents of Santa Clara County.

While categories have changed over the years, review criteria has remained pretty much the same:

1) Quality and originality of work;
2) Professional activity and achievement reflective of Santa Clara County; and
3) Continuity of artistic exploration.

Nearly three decades since inception, the Individual Artist program has steadily evolved. Renamed categories – On the Wall, Off the Wall, On Stage, Off Stage, and Emerging Artists – acknowledge new art forms and encourage less experienced artists. Artist Laureate awards have increased to $5,000 and Emerging Artist Laureate awards to $2,500. Finally, Silicon Valley Creates has now created an SVNexus category, recognizing pioneering artistic achievement at the intersection of arts and technology.

Bringing together all of the Fellowship/Laureate recipients in one directory has been a joyous and rewarding undertaking. We are proud to honor our former Fellows and Laureates, and look forward to expanding the directory each year with the new award winners.

Deborah Mills Thackrey

Photo: Deborah Mills Thackrey, Photographer / Videographer