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Sharon Kallis, Barraca de Vinya, 2010.

Sharon Kallis, Barraca de Vinya, 2010.

The Brandford/Elliott Award for Excellence in Fiber Art (B/EA), (formerly known as the Lillian Elliott Award), became a well-known honor in a very short time, perhaps because there are almost no other awards specifically designated for emerging artists working with fiber, and because the need is so great. To put the award on a secure financial footing, this exciting program will be formally turned over to the Textile Society of America (TSA) in the fall of 2016 to assure its continuance.

Andrea Donnelly, The Veiling #1 (from The Veiling Series), 2012.

Andrea Donnelly, The Veiling #1 (from The Veiling Series), 2012.

Since its inception, the B/EA has been granted to twelve artists who showed exceptional promise in their early work. The financial support and recognition given by the award, at critical turning points in their careers, enabled them to continue on what had been a lonely and difficult path. These artists have gone on to do important work; several have become leaders in the field. The award process brings to light artists from many parts of the world, including some working in relative isolation. Every other year members of the B/EA Board choose three nominators – professionals active in the field of art in the fiber medium – from different geographic regions. Each nominator recommends three artists who are then invited to apply. The B/EA Board reviews the applications and the award is given to a promising artist whose work reflects a willingness to take creative risks.

The B/EA award is presented at the biennial Textile Society of America symposium banquet. In September 2014 it was presented to Andrea Donnelly, a weaver and re-weaver of cloth, based in Richmond, Virginia. Since 1998, TSA has hosted the presentation of this award. Please visit the website – — for further information including sketches of past awardees and images of their past and current work.

What can you do?

The goal this year is to raise $20,000 toward an endowment. The fund has received an anonymous offer of a $10,000 matching grant which must be met by June 1. Please consider your own generous donation toward this goal. It would put the B/EA on sound financial footing for the next few years and allow us to give the stipend that goes with the award, currently at $3,000. For many of the artists we have supported, the stipend has made a significant difference.

You may contribute online through the TSA website’s donation page: or send a check to:

Brandford/Elliott Award, POBox 5617, Berkeley, CA 94705

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