A number of universities, research institutes and Non-Governmental organizations have played an important role in the field of visual arts. It is worth examining their websites for further information on the work they do and what their emphasis and specialization is.
The following people are some who have won the MacArthur "genius" fellowship for their work in Art, design or photography.
James Carpenter is an innovative glass sculptor, engineer, and designer who expands the artistic and technical potential of glass. Carpenter envisions and translates the aesthetic and imaginative possibilities of glass into built environments. His work draws from architecture, engineering, materials science, and sculpture, extending the boundaries of each. In collaboration with architects and engineers from around the world, Carpenter creates fluid and elegant designs that incorporate new fabrication technologies to address contemporary environmental and energy considerations. He also reveals new ways for light, modulated through glass structural materials, to enrich the visual experience of architectural space.
Kyle Abraham is a choreographer and dancer probing the relationship between identity and personal history through a unique hybrid of traditional and vernacular dance styles that speaks to a new generation of dancers and audiences. With diverse training in music, visual art, and dance—and breathtaking skill as a performer—Abraham’s highly physical dance vocabulary reflects the youthful energy of the hip-hop and urban dance he encountered in his adolescence as well as a strong grounding in modern dance technique.
Mary Jackson is a fiber artist whose intricately coiled vessels preserve the centuries-old craft of sweetgrass basketry and push the tradition in stunning new directions. A descendent of the Gullah community of coastal South Carolina, Jackson learned to make baskets at the age of four from her mother and grandmother, who passed on skills brought to the United States by their West African ancestors. Developed originally as domestic and agricultural tools for cotton and rice production, sweetgrass baskets have traditionally taken such utilitarian shapes as storage containers and rice fanners. With masterful technique, Jackson translates these practical designs into finely detailed, sculptural forms. To maximize color contrasts, she incorporates other regional materials — strips of palmetto, long-leaf pine needles, and bulrush — into works that rise in rhythmic coils and demonstrate the remarkable strength and tension of her stitched constructions.
Edet Belzberg is a documentary filmmaker whose films are distinguished by her choice of subjects, in-depth treatment of time and place, and elegant storytelling. In Belzberg’s signature film, Children Underground, she follows and films a group of homeless children living in a train station in Bucharest, Romania. Raw, graceful, and insightful, Children Underground personalizes the often dangerous and always chaotic and uncertain world of youngsters casually abandoned by their families and the larger society. Overcoming the obstacles of language, culture, and place, she records the individual and collective daily struggles of the five main characters with an unflinching, compassionate eye, managing at the same time to win the trust of children whose capacity for trust is all but depleted.