Awards Season Continues: A new prize from the Decorative Arts Trust

Editorial Staff Art

Detail of Mrs. Benjamin Franklin Yoe and her daughter Mary Elizabeth by Joshua Johnson. Photograph provided by Old Salem and the Museum of Early Southern Decorative Arts.

A rather juicy plum is now available to institutions that study and foster appreciation for the fine and decorative arts. This week, the Decorative Arts Trust—the Pennsylvania-based educational and advocacy organization chartered in 1977—announced its establishment of a new annual $100,000 award named the Prize for Excellence and Innovation. Starting this year, the honor will go to—quoting the Trust’s press release—”a scholarly endeavor undertaken by a non-profit organization, such as museum exhibitions, print and digital publications, and online databases. Projects for consideration must advance the public’s appreciation of decorative arts, fine arts, architecture, or landscape design.”

Photograph provided by Old Salem and the Museum of Early Southern Decorative Arts.

The new prize serves “as a complement to our efforts to support young scholars through the Emerging Scholars Program,” the Trust’s executive director Matthew A. Thurlow explained in the statement. “Thanks to the generosity of three lead donors, we are making a long-term commitment to furthering innovative scholarship in the arts while reinforcing the Trust’s mission and promoting our broader programs.”

Photograph provided by Old Salem and the Museum of Early Southern Decorative Arts.

Nominations for this year’s award—self-nominations are allowed—will be accepted through March 31st. Per the Trust: applications “should describe the defined mission and outcomes of the project and include a budget, project timeline, and list of key personnel and partners, if applicable. Projects can extend 1–5 years for final completion after the prize is awarded, but no longer. Collaborative endeavors that unite multiple institutions will also receive consideration.”

Photograph provided by Old Salem and the Museum of Early Southern Decorative Arts.

Finalists will be notified by June 1st and the winning recipient will be announced on September 1st. For more information visit decorativeartstrust.org/prize, email thetrust@decorativeartstrust.org, or phone 610-627-4970.