The recipients of the 2015 Mayor’s Arts Awards were announced at a ceremony at Minnetrista. The Mayor’s Arts Awards are the most prestigious honors conferred by the City of Muncie on individual artists, teachers, non-profit organizations and patrons of the arts. Recipients received their award and a proclamation from the Mayor. See the award winners and their bios below.
Arts Advocate: Ann Johnson
Arts Leader: Cornerstone Center for the Arts
Arts Educator: Bob Hartley
Corporate Arts: AEP/Indiana Michigan Power, Jim Riggle
Artist in Community: Jim Faulkner
Next Generation Artist: Braydee Euliss
Muncie Maker Award: Jonathan Becker
Lifetime Achievement Award: Ned Griner
Ann began making her famous sculptural line of clocks in 1964. Although she didn’t open the House of Fogg until 1984, in Muncie she is fondly thought of as “Ms. F.B. Fogg.” In what she considers her “previous life,” Ann taught art at all grade levels and still teaches at Ivy Tech today. Ann has won numerous awards, including Sagamore of the Wabash and Presidential Art Teacher. Her work is in many homes, from Muncie residences to the White House. Artist, educator, leader – at home and abroad – no one advocates more passionately for the arts in Muncie and our region than Ann Johnson.
Cornerstone Center for the Arts
Since its 1999 founding as Muncie Center for the Arts, Cornerstone has reached out to thousands in our community with arts programs as diverse as their participants. In 2013, Cornerstone was commended by the National Endowment for the Arts with an “Arts Engagement in American Communities” award and in 2015, received Indiana Minority Business Magazine’s Champion of Diversity Award. Cornerstone’s “access to all” policy helps them serve families and youth who might otherwise not experience the arts in any form. Partnering with many other non-profits in Muncie, Cornerstone Center for the Arts embodies improving lives through interaction with the arts.
Bob spent 34 years in the classroom at Muncie Southside High School teaching, inspiring and encouraging students and colleagues to discover their “inner artist.” He mentored student teachers at Ball State, Taylor and Anderson Universities. Many of his students have pursued careers in various arts disciplines; many of the students he mentored have gone on to become teachers, sharing Bob’s love of art. Thirty-five years and thousands of students later, Bob retired; for about a year. Opening The Artist Within gallery and studio, with wife Vicki, in downtown Muncie allowed Bob to continue to pursue his passion helping folks of all ages discover their “inner artist” while also aiding in the renaissance of downtown Muncie. When you speak “art” with Bob Hartley, be prepared to learn something.
AEP, Indiana Michigan Power represented by Jim Riggle
Muncie is fortunate to have a company like AEP/IMP in our community. Through their community relations manager, Jim Riggle, Indiana Michigan Power has been a major supporter of the arts and culture community of Muncie and Delaware County. They are firm believers in the power of the arts to positively impact lives, positioning their support behind numerous education and non-profit organizations to bring arts and culture activities to a broad and diverse community.
Artist in Community
Jim paints the Midwest with love and understanding, imbuing meaning to old barns, towns, meadows, and waterways as they morph through the seasons. Preferring to paint on location whenever possible, his stunning watercolors have won local and national awards. Jim’s works are in museum and corporate collections as well as public and private collections and have given special pleasure to those needing a reprieve from the world of medicine at IU Health Ball Memorial Hospital, as shared by one his nominators. Teacher, mentor, and friend – Jim Faulkner is truly a Delaware County arts icon who continues to make a tremendous impact on our community.
Next Generation Artist
Braydee won many student awards while at Ball State University and frequently exhibits in juried shows in the region. As an artist, her jewelry is creative, original, unique and timeless – a striking balance. Her sculptures are equally original and often challenge the viewer’s concepts of what art is. While an accomplished artist, it is Braydee’s solid commitment to bettering our local arts community that really makes her stand out. She has originated programs to assist emerging artists, co-curates a monthly program at the David Owsley Museum of Art and advocates for the arts in all areas. Braydee is engaged, a “doer,” brings her peers “into the game,” and is not yet 30. Braydee Euliss epitomizes generational leadership in the Muncie Arts Community.
Jonathan is a teaching artist, performer and mask maker. He has taught in nearly all areas of theater performance in educational and theater venues all over the world. As impressive as this is, it is his work as a mask maker that sets him apart as a Muncie Maker. Theater-Masks.com is a full service production shop that creates masks for educational institutions, professional theaters and individual artists in 46 countries. From such noted clients as Disney Theatrical, NBC, and The Bravo Cable Network to locally known clients as Minnetrista, Muncie Civic Theater, and Ball State University where he is an Assistant Professor of Theatre, Jonathan’s vast selection of theater masks keeps him on the international stage. Jonathan Becker truly “exemplifies the impact and vitality of Muncie’s creative economy.”
Teacher, artist, mentor, and arts advocate, Ned Griner’s impact on Muncie and Delaware County is beyond compare. A native of Delaware County, Ned returned home in 1961 to teach at Ball State University after completing his doctorate in education at The Pennsylvania State University. Ned retired from BSU in 1994 but he did not retire from the arts community, serving on local boards, continuing to research and author books on regional art history, and always encouraging and supporting the arts in our community. His exhibitions and speaking engagements are too many to number and crisscross the country. He is continually sought as a speaker today. Throughout his life, Ned has viewed every experience as an opportunity, wresting all he could from each one and sharing what he learned with others. A prolific and accomplished painter, metal craftsman, print maker, jewelry maker, and author, Ned’s real passion is teaching and sharing an appreciation of the arts. As a nominator stated, “He feels that communities need graduates who will not only personally consume art, but will also be influential leaders sympathetic to the arts in the communities.” Ned’s students continue to stay in touch with him from around the country; such has been his impact on their lives. In his memoirs, Ned noted, “In the final analysis, I am more proud of my students than I am of all my paintings, jewelry and Events put together.” Ned Griner’s passion for life and his belief that the arts help us all to flourish are unparalleled.