Folk art is usually passed down from teacher to apprentice outside the walls of any formal institution. Florida is seeking folk art masters and apprentices to participate in a program aimed at keeping their traditions alive for generations to come.
This year’s Florida FolkLife Apprenticeship teams are working on Hungarian embroidery, Puerto Rican lace making and a Chinese musical instrument called a zheng. The program gives stipends for travel and supplies. A team is one master artist or craftsperson and one or more apprentices.
Program Director Blaine Waide said, it’s because the state has an interest in preserving cultural traditions.
“By having made that commitment to the state, it’s something that they’ll then become deeply interested in and carry on, and preserve the state’s traditional heritage in that way.”
The state is accepting applications for the FolkLife Apprenticeship program through mid-May. The selected teams will demonstrate what they’ve worked on at next year’s Florida Folk Festival in White Springs. Interested artists can apply through the Florida Division of Historical Resources website.