MSAC Announces 2022 Independent Arts Award Recipients!

MSAC announced today that $264,000 has been awarded to 69 Maryland artists through the 2022 Independent Artist Awards (IAA). With this year’s awards focused on the literary arts, the 2022 awardees represent a wide range of artistic talents - ranging from poets to playwrights, novelists to essayists - from all across the state. Click here for the full list of winners. 

“I am very proud of these 69 awardees who represent the many individual artists whose hard work enhances the quality of life for all the people of Maryland,” said First Lady Yumi Hogan. “I want to congratulate all the awardees and thank them for their incredible contributions to our state. Their work helps uplift Maryland’s communities and reminds us that self-expression is a powerful tool that can help unite us and understand one another.”

In addition to the recognition, awardees receive grants to support their continued artistic growth. Regional grants of $2,000 will be awarded to 57 artists to recognize promise, and 12 artists will receive an award of $10,000 to recognize notable artistic achievement. Two state awardees, chosen from the $10,000 regional winners, were also named: Susan B. Muaddi Darraj of Baltimore County and Teri Ellen Cross Davis of Montgomery County will receive an additional award of $15,000 to recognize outstanding artistic achievement. 

“The phenomenal artists being recognized this year are representative of the breadth and depth of the literary arts in Maryland,” added MSAC Executive Director Steven Skerritt-Davis. “MSAC is thrilled to showcase the work of these accomplished artists, including poets, essayists, graphic novelists, children’s writers, playwrights, screenwriters, and fiction and nonfiction writers.”

This year’s awardees were chosen from a pool of nearly 300 applicants through a public panel process. MSAC worked with a multi-disciplinary panel made up of a wide range of literary expertise from across the state to review and evaluate each eligible application. Panelists received training on the IAA program, including scoring using a published rubric and implicit bias in the panel process. 

Panelists reviewed all eligible applications, which included 163 from the Baltimore Metro region, 94 from the Washington Metro region, and 32 from the Eastern, Southern, and Western regions. Panelists then recommended 84 applications to move forward to the public Regional Panel Meetings for further review. From here, the 69 awardees were recommended for regional awards. IAA recipients represent a total of 15 Maryland jurisdictions. 

MSAC will feature the work of this year’s recipients through its social media platforms later this year.