Creating a Living Legacy (CALL) CALL Partner Organizations

Joan Mitchell Foundation

In 2007, the CALL program began with an initial in-depth pilot with 4 artists located across the nation, in which each artist received various resources including financial and technical support, and attended annual convenings to share what they were learning. Their experiences were invaluable in providing the Foundation a clear sense of what career documentation entails, especially for mature artists with multiple decades of studio work.

Lessons learned from the pilot phase led the Foundation to develop a curriculum and training program for assistants working with older artists, which we now call  Legacy Specialists. These trained Legacy Specialists then worked with the next group of CALL recipients, eight artists based in New York City. By basing the program in New York, the Foundation could oversee the training of the Legacy Specialists and help them professionally guide the CALL artists through the CALL documentation process.

With the objective to support artists on a national level, the Foundation once again expanded the CALL program in 2011 by partnering with four arts organizations: Artist Trust, Bronx Council on the Arts, DiverseWorks and Space One Eleven to help them create their own unique model for working with individual artists in their communities. While the Joan Mitchell Foundation directly serves the New York-based CALL Artists, our partner organizations’ mission is to ensure that models which protect the cultural legacy of artists are fostered across the country. These partnerships are achieved through a financial initiative which provides program development support, the legacy building curriculum, and database software, and are further cultivated through continued information and resource sharing between all of the organizations.

Please read on for summaries of the individual programs run by our partner organizations, as well as links to interviews and portfolios of the Joan Mitchell Foundation Pilot and NYC CALL Artists.

Joan Mitchell Foundation Pilot CALL Artists
Mildred Howard
Elemore Morgan, Jr.
Jaune Quick-To-See Smith
Freddy Rodriguez

Joan Mitchell Foundation Pilot CALL Museum Model
Mel Chin

Joan Mitchell Foundation 2012-2013 CALL Artists
Blane de St. Croix
Lesley Dill
Gwen Fabricant
Mary Frank
John Koos
Henrietta Mantooth
Juan Sanchez
Mimi Smith

Joan Mitchell Foundation 2013-2014 CALL Artists
Jamie Davidovich
Arlan Huang
Mario Martinez
Kazuko Miyamoto
Otto Neals
Gladys Triana
Betty Blayton Taylor
Emmett Wigglesworth

Joan Mitchell Foundation 2015-2016 CALL Artists
Devraj Dakoji
Marcos Dimas
Ted Kurahara
Joe Overstreet
Christy Rupp
Tara Sabharwal

Artist Trust

Artist Trust is expanding the knowledge and awareness of archiving and documenting artwork through the Creating a Living Legacy (CALL) program. Through CALL, Artist Trust provides Washington State visual artists with the necessary information and skills to assist them in documenting their artwork, helping to preserve their artistic legacy for generations.

The Artist Trust CALL Program is comprised of four major components:

1. Training of Legacy Specialists in archiving, documentation and related skills, and working with Washington State master artists to archive their legacies
The CALL program focuses on assisting visual artists in organizing and digitally documenting their artwork. Master artists over 55 years old received assistance from Legacy Specialists trained on archiving and documenting artwork.

2. Technology skill-building for artists through the Tech EDGE program
The CALL program provided Artist Trust with the ability to develop Tech EDGE, a new program of resources, workshops and webinars, that provides artists with the methods and tools for documenting visual arts in the digital age. The workshops offer instruction for artists in digital photography, image manipulation, digital portfolio creation, and more.

3. Development of an online resource of archives relevant to Washington visual artists
As a service to many artists, Artist Trust has gathered information on visual art archives, including answers to frequently asked questions (FAQ) on archives and repositories for visual arts, as well as information on a selection of local, statewide and national archives.

4. Investigation into new platforms for preserving cultural legacy and archiving artists’ work
Artist Trust is in discussions with libraries, museums and other institutions about the best ways to gather, secure and share the legacies of Washington State artists, from original artwork to cloud-based archives.

Artist Trust CALL Artists 2013-14
Juan Alonso-Rodriguez
Marita Dingus
Anne Hirondelle
Lisa Telford
Jim Woodring

Link to Artist Trust

Bronx Council on the Arts

BCA-CALL and creative workforce programs provide 12-week training modules and accelerated intensives in art handling, collections, preparedness and emergency risk management ─ all vital professional development skills-sets for aspiring art handlers, teaching artists and Legacy Specialists. Workforce initiatives enables trained specialists to provide hands-on support and in turn, to train CALL artists in creating and maintaining safe studios and storage, plus providing clear methods and systems for organizing exhibitions, documenting and ultimately archiving their careers and life-work. BCA has also designed training modules for practicing professionals in corporate and institutional settings. Over 85% of BCA trainees are presently working in arts industries from fine art transport, to auction houses, museums and private collections. Many trainees are now consultants in their own right, growing careers as independent art service professionals. Visit BCA’s website at for information.

CALL and creative workforce training enables BCA specialists to:

• Develop archival databases and methodologies for keeping accurate legacy and estate records.
• Handle, pack, wrap, transport fine art works and objects.
• Work in exhibitions development and related collections technologies.
• Learn and engage in critical relief specialty areas such as disaster recovery and mold remediation.
• Become a vital resource to artists and institutions in the field.
• Engage with notable professional organizations focused on preserving cultural legacies.
• Share unique perspectives, insights and strategies through public presentations and forums.

The Legacy CALL Project is an outgrowth of BCA’s well known Art Handler Training Program (AHTP) established in 1998, and serves the creative workforce by offering career pathways, professional tools and skills. The Bronx Council on the Arts is one of four nationally funded organizations partnering with the Joan Mitchell Foundation, working locally and nationally to create sound systems for advancing artists, and committed to enabling creators in preserving their legacies for future generations.

Link to Bronx Council on the Arts

Space One Eleven

The vision of Space One Eleven’s (SOE) Creating a Living Legacy (CALL) program is the establishment of a self-sustaining system for assisting Alabama visual artists in the documentation and preservation of their legacies, which is a part of the cultural heritage of the often overlooked Deep South.

Through the program, SOE will raise awareness about the importance of documenting and preserving the legacies of artists whose work represents a critical cultural history. This statewide program will support artists by documenting their artwork and careers through the implementation of studio organization, career and artwork documentation, estate planning, and the use of a database developed by the Joan Mitchell Foundation for CALL. Their living legacy will better prepare the participating artists to respond to grant proposals, calls for exhibitions, and present their works to curators during studio visits; thus enabling them to further their careers by taking advantage of opportunities at home and outside the Deep South.

Further, the CALL program will provide job training and employment for emerging artists who will be trained as Legacy Specialists to guide the artists in the process of documenting their legacies. Legacy Specialists will acquire skills pertinent to career development, documentation and organization of information and works of art, human relations, and database management; while receiving intergenerational mentoring. In addition to the economic impact of this workforce development, the CALL program will allow young artists to remain in their Alabama communities by providing them with employment opportunities related to the field of visual art. This is of vital importance to slow the endemic brain drain of young artists from Alabama’s culturally isolated areas.

Through this project, SOE reaffirms its commitment to its mission, which is to support living visual artists and to educate the public of their value. A founding goal of SOE was, and remains, to introduce Deep South artists of excellence to broader audiences.

Space One Eleven CALL Artists 2013-14
Larry Jens Anderson
Gary Chapman
Mary Ann Sampson
Jürgen Tarrasch

Link to Space One Eleven

Studio One Archive Resource

Studio One Archive Resource preserves the stories of artists in Houston through the Creating A Living Legacy Project (CALL), previously hosted by DiverseWorks. As one of the largest cities in the nation, Houston has attracted a healthy population of artists over the years who have enlivened the cultural landscape of the city. The Houston CALL Project will aid these artists at every stage of their career. CALL Workshops will empower emerging and mid-career artists with information and skills so they may manage the records of their practice as it develops, and reap the benefits of their work in the present as well as the future.

Artists dedicated to their practice for thirty years or more may be selected as CALL Artists and receive grant funded assistance to collect, organize and digitize their records. Through this work, the CALL Artist can gain a greater understanding of their creative development, feel empowered to own their history as an artist, and be encouraged to incorporate it into their estate plan. Should circumstances provide, the CALL Project will also facilitate the placement of the CALL Artist's records with an appropriate archive or repository. For any artist who has funds to invest in preserving their history, the Houston CALL Project will offer affordable packages of assistance through CALL Services. If the artist is organizing their history for a retrospective or large scale exhibition, publication, or documentary film, CALL Services will seek to work with the museum, arts organization, publisher, dealer or collector, to raise additional funds in support of this work. Over time, the Houston CALL Project will help tell the story of an arts community that has strengthened over several generations since the mid-20th century and how the lives of its artists contributed to its vibrancy and Houston's cultural legacy.

CALL Artists 2014-2015
Rachel Hecker
Terrell James
Mary Jenewein
Charles Mary Kubricht
David McGee
Beth Secor
Toby Topek