Molly Neptune Parker (1939-2020), Passamaquoddy, Flowertop Basket, brown ash and sweetgrass, 2020, from the Hudson Museum's on-line collection, which allows teachers and students to explore its collection remotely and learn about Wabanaki artistic traditions or to reference in conjunction with other virtual resources, including a tour of the Wabanaki gallery and YouTube segments that feature interviews with contemporary basketmakers, carvers, beadworkers, and birchbark artists. Courtesy of Hudson Museum

ELLSWORTH & PORTLAND –The Maine Community Foundation recently awarded 13 grants totaling $112,807 through its Belvedere Traditional Handcrafts Fund. The fund’s goal is to support projects and organizations that promote traditional handcrafts throughout Maine, including fiber arts, ceramics, basketry, jewelry, glass arts, woodwork, leather and traditional Native American handcrafts.

The 2020 grant awards include:

Nibezun, Passadumkeag, to provide a two-week traditional birchbark canoe building workshop:

Watershed Center for the Ceramic Arts, Newcastle, to equip new studios and buildings with tools and materials that support year-round ceramics arts programming;

University of Maine Foundation, Hudson Museum, Orono, to create online educational content featuring Wabanaki traditional art forms specifically to promote remote learning for Maine students and teachers in grades K-12.

An anonymous donor established the Belvedere Traditional Handcrafts Fund in 2007. The next grant application deadline is June 1, 2021. For more information, contact Leslie Goode, senior program officer, at 207-412-2002 or lgoode@mainecf.org. 

A complete list of 2020 grants:

Artisan Lab, Gouldsboro, to build an Entrepreneurial Incubator with handcraft-based, experiential-learning programs enabling courage, capacity, competence and resilience: $10,000;

Atlantic Challenge Foundation Inc., Rockland, to continue to strengthen boatbuilding instruction and apprentice programs: $9,000;

Cobscook Community Learning Center, Lubec, to offer immersive experiences in traditional handcrafts in a 2021 celebration of the greater Cobscook Bay region: $10,000;

Community School, Mount Desert, to connect local woodworkers with Community School students and the greater community through place-based workshops, along with growing a traditional tool library: $9,000;

Cultural Resources Inc., Rockport, to support the Wabanaki Arts Mentorship Program, an intergenerational teaching program of traditional crafts and cultural knowledge: $10,000;

Downeast Roots, Milbridge, to offer workshops and public lectures about traditional handcrafts specific to the Downeast Maine area for its annual Downeast Roots Festival: $8,750;

Eastport Arts Center, to expand workshops to include handcrafts for healing in these hard times, promoting wellness for all ages: $9,982;

In Her Presence, Portland, to create a post-pandemic strategy for organizational growth, including a network of sewing and supporting seamstresses: $5,000;

Nibezun, Passadumkeag, to provide a two-week traditional birchbark canoe building workshop: $8,000;

Schoodic Arts for All, Winter Harbor, for Programs of the Future, presenting traditional handcrafts in an online and pandemic-safe format: $10,000;

University of Maine Foundation, Orono, to create resource units on Wabanaki traditional art forms, integrating Hudson Museum online offerings for remote learning into K-12 curriculum and providing a workshop for educators: $10,000;

Watershed Center for the Ceramic Arts, Newcastle, to equip new studio and studio annex buildings with tools and materials that support year-round ceramics arts programming: $4,000;

Wendell Gilley Museum of Bird Carving, Southwest Harbor, to expand the museum’s virtual programming and to teach the craft of bird carving to a wider audience by providing bird carving kits for families to use at home: $9,075

Headquartered in Ellsworth, with additional personnel in Portland, Dover-Foxcroft and Mars Hill, the Maine Community Foundation works with donors and other partners to provide strong investments, personalized service, local expertise, and strategic giving to improve the quality of life for all Maine people. To learn more about the foundation, visit www.mainecf.org.