Finalists for NOPA documentary grant named

Twelve finalists have been named in the competition for the New Orleans Photo Alliance-established Michael P. Smith Fund (MPS Fund) or Documentary Photography grant for 2011. A winner from among this dozen will be awarded $5,000.

NOPA congratulates the finalists, among them the following:

Jeremiah Ariaz, Baton Rouge LA
Project Title: Tucumcari

Dominic Bracco II, Corpus Christi TX
Project Title: Life and Death in The Northern Pass

Debbie Fleming Caffery
, Breaux Bridge LA
Project Title: The Last Row of Cane

Scott Dalton, Houston TX
Project Title: So Close, So Far: Daily Life and Cartel Violence in Ciudad Juarez

Loli Kantor, Fort Worth TX
Project Title: There Was a Forest, Jewish Life in Eastern Europe

Deborah Luster, New Orleans LA
Project Title: Tooth for an Eye: A Chorography of Violence in Orleans Parish

Charles Martin, Paulina LA
Project Title: Perique

Nancy Newberry, Dallas TX
Project Title: Mum

Rick Olivier, New Orleans LA
Project Title: Zydeco

Betty Press, Hattiesburg MS
Project Title: I Am Because We Are

Amber Shields
, Austin TX
Project Title: Visions of Johanne: Aging of the Greatest Generation

Brandon Thibodeaux, Dallas TX
Project Title: Mound Bayou, MS

NOPA will announced a grant recipient by April 29, 2011.

The preliminary panelists, who selected the finalists, were Stella Kramer, independent editor and editor of Fraction J; Gina Martin, Photographer Representative for National Geographic Image Collection; and Kevin Miller, Director of the Southeast Museum of Photography in Daytona Beach FL.

Tom Rankin, the Director of the Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University, will select the grant recipient from the twelve finalists.

The MPS Fund was created by the Alliance to honor the life and work of Michael P. Smith, one of New Orleans’ most legendary documentary photographers. It is awarded annually to a photographer living in the Gulf Coast region whose work combines artistic excellence and a sustained commitment to a long-term, cultural documentary project.

You may read more about the fund, and Michael P. Smith, at the NOPA website.