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Bemidji's Treuer, Holt receive Region 2 Arts Council Artist Fellowship awards

The Region 2 Arts Council recently announced Bemidji-based textile artist Blair Treuer and singer-songwriter Joseph Holt as the recipients of the 2021-2022 Artist Fellowship awards.

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Bemidji-based textile artist Blair Treuer and singer-songwriter Joseph Holt were recently announced as recipients of the 2021-2022 Artist Fellowship awards by the Region 2 Arts Council. Contributed

BEMIDJI -- The Region 2 Arts Council recently announced Bemidji-based textile artist Blair Treuer and singer-songwriter Joseph Holt as the recipients of the 2021-2022 Artist Fellowship awards.

Artist Fellowship awards are intended for dedicated artists who have created a substantial independent body of work, have received recognition for their work, and whose work has been selected for solo exhibitions, commissions, presentations, readings or performances, a release said.

“My portraits explore intimate parts of my life and center on the juxtaposition between my white culture and my husband’s traditional Indigenous culture, and have ranged in topics from drug abuse, social ostracization, body image, femininity and masculinity, sexual abuse and exploitation, aging, transitioning from childhood to manhood and womanhood, with spirituality deeply woven into their narratives," Treuer said in the release. "My work is vulnerable, honest and personal, but often makes universal connections. Even when my work is dark, it’s filled with hope.”

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Textile artist Blair Treuer was one of the recipients of the Region 2 Arts Council 2021-2022 Artist Fellowship awards. Contributed.

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Treuer plans to use funding from this fellowship to complete a 26-portrait series entitled “Becoming: from Childhood to Womanhood,” the release said. Through the series, she seeks to explore the feminine body as sacred, challenging current societal messaging and examining and celebrating the transition from childhood to womanhood.

Joseph Holt was a public speaker, educator, philosopher, theologian, apprentice architect and church planter for years before returning to songwriting, the release said. Holt fronts for the regional Americana band Acoustic Smoke and the studio band Joe and The Reluctant Prophets. Acoustic Smoke was picked up by a talent agency in 2015 and has garnered hundreds of thousands of plays on Spotify for their three albums.

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Singer/songwriter Joseph Holt was one of the recipients of the Region 2 Arts Council 2021-2022 Artist Fellowship awards. Contributed.

Holt plans to use his fellowship to support an invitation from his publisher to go to Nashville to network, write and learn from some of the best in the industry while leveraging opportunities for his singer-songwriting career, the release said.

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