Sharpe-Walentas Studio Program announces recipients for 2024-2025

Andrew Woolbright, Sharpe-Walentas Studio Program, 2021.
Photo by Brad Ogbanna

The Brooklyn-based Sharpe-Walentas Studio Program last Wednesday announced the recipients of its 2024-2025 studio program residency, as well as the recipients of the 2024 Philip Pearlstein Painter Distinction and the 2024 Irving Sandler Prize.

The recipients of the 2024-2025 residency are: Sarah Bedford, Melissa Brown, Michael Candy, Mark Joshua Epstein, Pap Souleye Fall, Tatiana Florival, Justin Rui Han, Ellie Krakow, Beck Lowry, Leonardo Madriz, Kristen Mills, Rachelle Mozman Solano, Anne Neely, Sagarika Sundaram, Andina Marie Osorio, Mariana Ramos Ortiz and Phyllis Yao.

The Sharpe-Walentas Studio Program said these 17 artists were selected from a competitive pool of 1,874 applicants by a jury composed of Ellen Altfest, Jennifer Packer, Matthew Day Jackson, Keltie Ferris and Virginia Overton.

The residency provides rent-free studio space for a period of one year, lasting from September 2024 through August 2025, with an open studios weekend to be scheduled for Spring 2025.

“We are thrilled to announce the recipients of this year’s residency program and welcome such a talented group to our studio spaces and our community,” said Kate Gavriel, director of the Sharpe-Walentas Studio Program. “This year’s selection process was incredibly competitive and we are so appreciative of all of the talented artists that applied, we look forward to seeing the fantastic works that this year’s class pulls together.”

Justin Han, Risk and Sanctuary (2023). Oil on canvas. 48 x 40 in.
Justin Han, Risk and Sanctuary (2023). Oil on canvas. 48 x 40 in. Photo by Justin Han

The Philip Pearlstein Painter distinction, named in honor of Philip Pearlstein, a member of the program’s Artist Advisory Committee and co-founder of the Sharpe-Walentas Studio Program, was given to Justin Han.

The Sharpe-Walentas Studio Program said the award identifies an outstanding representational painter and ensures that a non-abstract painter be awarded a residency annually in recognition of Pearlstein’s commitment to referential art.

The Sharpe-Walentas Studio Program also announced Andrew Woolbright as the recipient of the 2024 Irving Sandler Prize.

Founded in 2019, the $2,500 prize is awarded annually to program alumni who share Irving’s concern for the “intentions, visions, and experiences” of artists.

Woolbright is an artist, gallerist and editor-at-large at the Brooklyn Rail, living and working in Brooklyn.

The Sharpe-Walentas Studio Program said Woolbright was selected for the Irving Sandler Prize as “an outstanding alumnus” of the program, “in recognition of his ongoing contribution to the New York City arts community, both in his artistic practice and generous spirit, as well as an educator, writer, and curator.”

The Sharpe-Walentas Studio Program awards rent-free, non-living studio space to 17 visual artists for year-long residencies in DUMBO, Brooklyn.

Developed for artists, by artists in 1991, its mission is to provide working studio space and community for artists.

The program was renamed in 2014 in order to honor the legacy of Marie Walsh Sharpe and reflect the commitment of the Walentas Family Foundation as stewards of the program.

In July 2020, Jane Walentas, who championed and oversaw the program’s stewardship by the Walentas Family Foundation, passed away.

“She was deeply dedicated to the program’s mission of supporting working artists, and her legacy continues through the hundreds of Sharpe-Walentas Studio Program alumni and all those to come,” the Sharpe-Walentas Studio Program said.

Artists interested in applying for next year’s residency should visit