Press Release

PAFA Announces 2019 Winners of Prestigious Travel Scholarships and Museum Purchase Prizes

PHILADELPHIA (May 29, 2019) -- The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (PAFA) is pleased to announce the 2019 recipients of its most prestigious travel awards and museum purchase prizes. The award winners were announced at PAFA’s Commencement exercises on May 10, 2019.

PAFA awarded more than $550,000 in awards and scholarships this year, including travel scholarships and purchase prizes. The award-winning works are included in the 118th Annual Student Exhibition (ASE) on view May 10 through June 2, 2019 at PAFA, 128 N. Broad Street in Philadelphia.

The 2019 top prize recipients are:

Nhi Vo (BFA ’19) is the winner of the 2019 William Emlen Cresson Memorial Travel Scholarship. First awarded in 1902, the scholarship recipient receives funding for European travel and full-tuition to PAFA for the two terms after completing his or her travels. Vo was also awarded the Mark Cullinane Memorial Prize in Sculpture, the Marcia Lampert Prize for a Construction, the Elena and Will Barnet Prize for Abstract Art, and The Anne Bryan Memorial Award.

Bethann Parker (BFA ’19) is the recipient of the 2019 Richard C. von Hess Memorial Travel Scholarship. This is a one-year full tuition and travel scholarship for an undergraduate student exhibiting competitively in the ASE and is selected by PAFA's appointed faculty. Parker also received the Lambert and Emma Wallace Cadwalader Prize for Landscape, the Hobson Pittman Memorial Prize, Charles E. Dutrow Award, Janet Fleisher Prize, and the Gross Mccleaf Gallery Prize.

Hayley Murphy (Cert., ’19) is the winner of the 2019 Lewis S. Ware Memorial Travel Scholarship. First awarded in 1938, this scholarship affords recipients funds dedicated to European travel. Murphy also won a Thouron Prize and the Robert T. Wickersham Memorial Prize.

Kemeys Goethe (BFA ’19) and Dara Haskins (BFA ’19) are the winners of the 2019 J. Henry Schiedt Memorial Travel Scholarships. First awarded in 1949, this scholarship is awarded to two students based on outstanding merit and faculty recommendation, and grants recipients the ability to travel abroad. Haskins is also the recipient of the Edna Pennypacker Stauffer Memorial Prize and the Jimmy C. Lueders Painting Prize.

“I was really surprised and happy to win these awards,” Haskins said. “It was really competitive and everyone’s work looks so great.” Haskins plans to use her scholarship to travel to Old Havana, Cuba for a month to immerse herself in the culture and spend time at museums and with local artists. “I hope to find a new way of seeing.”

Rachel Magdalen Drennen (Cert., ’20) is the winner of the 2019 Women's Board Travel Scholarship. First awarded in 2006, the Women's Board Travel Scholarship is awarded to an undergraduate in their junior year for travel and related expenses in the summer months of the year of the award, plus a tuition scholarship for the subsequent academic year.

Aaron Feltman (BFA/Cert. ’20), Esai Alfredo Figueroa Ruiz (BFA ’20), Eustace Francis (BFA ’20), Madison Greiner (PAFA-Penn BFA ’19; Cert.’20), Rhona Hofmeyr (BFA ’20), Shane Lowder (BFA ’19), Kelly Micca (BFA ’20), Jiatong Tian (Cert. ’20), and Kathleen Gallo (BFA ’20) are the first recipients of The Raymond D. & Estelle Rubens Travel Scholarships. The late Estelle Barenbaum Rubens, a longtime PAFA Museum docent, has given nearly $8 million to PAFA to establish a two-part scholarship: the first part will be an award to pay for travel and travel-related expenses for students to visit Europe during the summer following their third year of study. The second part of the scholarship will provide full tuition for students during their following two semesters at the Academy.

Feltman also won the Lambert and Emma Wallace Cadwalader Prize for Portraiture and The Fine Arts Venture Fund Award. Ruiz also won the John R. Connor Memorial Prize in Printmaking, the Benjamin West Prize, the Arthur De Costa Painting Prize, and the John Galasso Memorial Prize. Greiner also won the Fine Arts Venture Fund Award. Micca also won the Packard Prize, the Edmund Stewardson Prize, the Lambert and Emma Wallace Cadwalader Prize for Landscape (second prize), the Robert A. Ricker Memorial Prize, the Lois and Charles X. Carlson Landscape Painting Residency, and the Fine Arts Venture Fund Award.

Hofmeyr, who plans to use her scholarship to trace her ancestry in The Netherlands, Belgium and the south of France, said she was “absolutely delighted and extremely grateful” to receive the inaugural travel scholarship. “I wish Estelle Rubens was here so I could tell her in person how much I appreciate this very generous gesture.”

Jessica Elena Aquino (MFA ’19) is the winner of the 2019 Murray Dessner Memorial Graduate Travel Prize, PAFA's first travel prize at the graduate level. A noted Philadelphia artist and PAFA alumnus, Dessner was the recipient of a Cresson Travel Scholarship and a Scheidt Prize while studying at PAFA, and served as a PAFA faculty member for over 40 years. First presented in 2014, this prize honors Dessner's legacy and ensures that MFA students of outstanding merit benefit, as Dessner did, from domestic or international travel. Aquino also received the Alumni Council Award.

Jotham Malave Maldonado (MFA ’19) and Melanie Delach (MFA ’19) are the recipients of the Judith Mcgregor Caldwell Purchase Prize for Academy’s Permanent Collection. First awarded in 1999, this prize is given annually to one or more recipients whose artwork is identified as being of significance to be added to PAFA's permanent collection. The winners are selected from works in the ASE by PAFA's President, Dean of the School, and Director of the Museum. Maldonado also won the Woodmere Art Museum Purchase Prize. Delach received the Fine Arts Venture Fund Award.

Since PAFA's first travel scholarship was awarded in 1902, recipients note that the opportunity to travel internationally has enriched their perspectives and artistic practices in profound ways. Former winners of PAFA's travel awards include Edna Andrade, Bo Bartlett, Moe Brooker, Vincent Desiderio, Billy Blaise Dufala, the late Barkley Hendricks, Orit Hofshi, Alex Kanevsky, Elizabeth Osborne, and the late Ellen Powell Tiberino.

Last Updated
November 23, 2021 - 6:04 PM

About PAFA

Founded in 1805, the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts is America's first school and museum of fine arts. A recipient of the National Medal of Arts, PAFA offers undergraduate and graduate programs in the fine arts, innovative exhibitions of historic and contemporary American art, and a world-class collection of American art. PAFA’s esteemed alumni include Mary Cassatt, Njideka Akunyili Crosby, William Glackens, Barkley L. Hendricks, Violet Oakley, Louis Kahn, David Lynch, and Henry Ossawa Tanner.