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Painting by Chante Fontaine, C'2011

Carnegie Corporation of New York and the John D. Rockefeller Foundation Division of the Arts Priority Award

The Division of the Arts Carnegie/Rockefeller Priority Award prioritizes faculty engaged in creative practices through making, performing, or exhibiting original work.  

2021-2022 Award Winners

During the academic year 2020-2021, five faculty in the arts were awarded Carnegie/Rockefeller Division of the Arts Priority Awards. Faculty who received the awards are Erin Washington (Department of Theater & Performance), Jaycee Holmes & T.Lang (Department of Art & Visual Culture, and Department of Dance Performance & Choreography), Nydia Blas (Department of Art & Visual Culture), and Paula Grissom Boughton, Ph.D. (Department of Music). Each recipient received $3,000.00 and had six months to deliver the project. Following is information about their projects.

Ayoka Chenzira
Division Chair for the Arts


The passion, imaginative thinking, and commitment to wrestling with ideas is evident inblue-quote-right each project. 

The Division Chair of the Arts, Dr. Ayoka Chenzira

Faculty Recipients

Carnegie/Rockefeller Division of the Arts Priority Award Winner Jaycee Holmes

Jaycee Holmes | Department of Art & Visual Culture and
T. Lang | Department of Dance Performance & Choreography

"Black Sentiment"
Medium: Digital Assets

Spelman Carnegie Rockefeller Priority Award Winner Jaycee Holms and T Lang"Black Sentiment" is the first phase of the large project, "Black in Motion," a digital library for animated movement sequences and assets in virtual 3D work. Collaborators Jaycee Holmes and T.Lang mapped "Black Sentiment" to choreographed movement using the Emotion Wheels developed by psychologist Robert Plutchik and then expanded upon by the professional development firm, The Junto Institute.

The library will host 3D character models and programmed animation sequences depicting movement, dance, mannerisms, facial expressions and choreography performed and digitally recorded using motion capture technology.

What is Motion Capture?

Spelman Carnegie/Rockefeller Priority Awardee T. Lang

Motion capture is the process of recording patterns of movement digitally for use in virtual and mixed reality work. The "Black In Motion" library will be a GitHub repository as an open-source tool for creating diverse projects in mixed reality and digital 3D efforts to bring much-needed diversity to the world of mixed reality and 3D development.

The motion capture process and community established in the development of the "Black in Motion" library will make possible endless opportunities to archive and capture any forms of movement from all communities.

Spelman Carnegie/Rockefeller Priority Awardee T. Lang

During the project's first phase, the team created custom avatars known as 'spirits.' The spirits are a blend of Black ancestry and Black futures working together to create a new virtual dimension -- a new space for Black play and creative exploration. The movement animations were recorded using Rokoko motion capturing technologies, and the team is archiving the digital animations for future work. Ecstasy by Spelman Carnegie/Rockefeller Priority Awardee T. LangE

Dope by Spelman Carnegie/Rockefeller Priority Awardee T. Lang
Spelman Carnegie/Rockefeller Priority Awardee T. Lang