Sustainable Arts Foundation
supporting artists and writers with families


Spring 2014 Award Winners

Martin Cozza

Martin Cozza's work-in-progress, Vincent's Lens, is a young adult novel about a boy who discovers he can see fantastic things through his dead father's glasses; if he sleeps with those glasses on, he can travel to the other world where his father now exists. It's a story about family and loss and grief and love; it's a richly-imagined, beautifully written novel that we look forward to sharing with our children. Cozza lives with his family in Minneapolis.

Cynthia Innis

Cynthia Innis produces modern landscapes, richly colored, but with room to breathe. Using paint, ink and collage, she evokes light, time, and space using traditional technique with a fragmented, almost digital aesthetic. She lives in Berkeley with her husband and young daughter.

Marshall Klimasewiski

Marshall Klimasewiski is writing a fantastically imaginative novel called Hyperborea, which brings real-life 19th century explorers and familiar fictional characters to a North Pole that is, like the novel's characters, both real and imaginary. We love how the novel is constructed partly out of diary entries and letters, and we love the vivid and memorable descriptions of the ways the characters travel, whether via balloon or via a mysterious, and beautifully-constructed, underground corridor. Klimasewiski is Writer-in-Residence at Washington University in St. Louis, where he lives with his wife and two children.

Elizabeth McKenzie

Elizabeth McKenzie’s novel-in-progress, The Portable Veblen, might be the most surprising love story we have ever read. Set in present-day California, the novel introduces us to a young woman--the title character--who is newly engaged to an ambitious neurologist. As in many love stories, the young couple's quirky families play a meddling role; unlike most love stories, so do a family of squirrels, as well as the memory of 19th century economist Thorstein Veblen. We look forward to the publication of this unusual and compulsively readable novel. The author of three previous books, McKenzie lives with her family in California.

Bonnie Rough

Bonnie Rough is author of the award-winning memoir Carrier: Untangling the Danger In My DNA. Her new memoir-in-progress, Mama Bare, grows directly out of her experience discussing Carrier with audiences, and being challenged to talk about the issues raised in that book—especially her decision to end a pregnancy—with her daughters. Not satisfied with answering just that one question, Rough goes big, tackling the larger issue of how we raise girls today. This is an important book, relevant beyond mothers and daughters but to anyone parenting today. Rough lives with her husband and two daughters in Seattle, Washington.

Spring 2014 Promise Award Winners
Don't be misled by the name: our Promise Award winners show more than just promise – they are highly accomplished artists and writers who have already demonstrated great success. We're delighted to support them in their future work.

Terrance Flynn

Terrance Flynn's terrific memoir-in-progress, Dying To Meet You, tells the story of how Flynn received a heart transplant shortly after he and his partner became fathers via gestational surrogacy. It's a dramatic story, told with an understated tone and dry humor that make us eager to read the finished book.

Rinne Groff

Rinne Groff is a playwright and mother of three. In her new play, Schooner, which will be produced in San Francisco this fall, we meet a married couple discussing their work and the prospect of having a third child. Their conversation is every bit as meaningful and banal as any couple's conversation; the dialogue is sharp and smart. We look forward to seeing this work-- and Groff's future productions-- on stage.

Jodi Hays

Jodi Hays impressed us with her quirky and original compositions and palette. Her abstract paintings feature simultaneously deliberate and discovered forms, and are beautiful in their expression of process. She lives with her husband and two boys in Nashville, TN.

Lu Heintz

The work of Lu Heintz is thoughtful, engaging and expertly constructed. Whether it’s delicate clothing stitched from receipts or sculptures crafted from steel, her work is exquisitely made. Her social commentary focuses on motherhood, digital community, and domesticity. She lives with her family in Greene, RI.

Irene Lusztig

Irene Lusztig is a filmmaker with a wide scope, although two recent projects have certainly been influenced by parenthood. The Motherhood Archives explores the history of pregnancy, birth, and childcare training. The Worry Box Project offers an exquisitely produced medium for mothers to share their worries. Irene lives with her family outside of Santa Cruz, CA.

Angela Voras-Hills

Angela Voras-Hills is a poet and mother of two. Her manuscript, Here Begins the Account of Worms, was inspired by a 1950s propaganda video, “The House in the Middle”, about how a clean house can save your family from a nuclear attack. Moving from that premise, the poems explore the notion of domestic spaces going feral (something most of us are quite familiar with). The poems range in tone from dark to joyous, with images that resonate long after reading.

Joe Wilkins

Joe Wilkins is working on a collection of short stories, The Kickers and the Cowboy Angels. The pieces we read from the collection impressed us with their muscular but poetic prose -- a rare and compelling combination. The author of a memoir and two collections of poetry, Wilkins lives with his wife and two children in Oregon, where he's also a professor of English at Linfield College.

Tuguldur Yondonjamts

The art of Tuguldur Yondonjamts is nearly impossible to describe. It is a whimsical yet rigorous exploration of both the mathematical and fantastical. It is at times playful, drawing from games of chess, and also intensely serious, calling attention to the issue of falcon exportation in Mongolia. Tuguldur lives with his family in New York, NY.

Spring 2014 Finalists
These finalists are artists and writers whose work impressed us greatly. Their work showed such strength and promise, we felt compelled to acknowledge them publicly.

Barbara Cole, Poetry
Matt Galletta, Fiction
Elsie Kagan, Painting
Amy Leach, Nonfiction
Tanya Marcuse, Photography
Gabriel Pionkowski, Painting
Michelle Seaton, Fiction
Kendra Langford Shaw, Fiction
Erin Toungate, Fiction
Stephanie Wang-Breal, Filmmaking

Learn more about our previous awardees.