"This award will allow for me to further my research on the political and historical nature of ornamentation and metalwork, as well as continue to develop my fluency and sensibilities in the craft of metalsmithing and vitreous enamelwork. Using the funding to travel to Germany, Poland, and the Czech Republic, exploring my heritage as an individual of both German and Jewish descent, I will then return to the Midwest and establish my own professional studio with the goal of developing a body of work inspired by my experiences. By visiting the cities, museums, galleries, and historical sites of a land where my family’s history, made up of both German Jews and German Nationalists, is riddled with both victimization and persecution, I hope to gain understanding of the monuments and memorials built by oppression and the surviving oppressed. The ornamentation and architectural format of the commemoration of triumph and defeat will serve as the inspiration for a body of work that will investigate the power of the heirloom. After returning home, I want to build up my own workspace within which I can make work that emphasizes the power of objects made by hand to bear the weight of memory – both of individuals and lineages. This award will allow this work to be shared in the format of a public exhibition and help to ensure that discussions of historical trauma and healing, as well as the importance of objects and craft as a means of relaying the lessons taught by history, continue."