The Trawick Prize Jury

Selection Panel 

The 2022 competition will be juried by Alexis Assam, Thomas James and Maria del Carmen Montoya.

Alexis Assam 
Regenia A. Perry Assistant Curator of Global Contemporary Art
Virgina Museum of Fine Arts

Alexis Assam is the Regenia A. Perry Assistant Curator of Global Contemporary Art at The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (VFMA). Assam comes to VMFA from the Philadelphia Museum of Art, where she worked as the Constance E. Clayton Curatorial Fellow in the Contemporary Art department. While at the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Assam played an integral role in the Philadelphia presentation of Senga Nengudi: Topologies. She assisted in other exhibitions and installations including Fault Lines: Contemporary Abstraction by Artists from South Asia and Expanded Painting in the 1960s and 1970s. Assam was also a member of the African American Art Working Group collaborating with peers on initiatives to diversify exhibitions, collections and programming at the museum. Assam has also worked as the Romare Bearden Graduate Museum Fellow at the Saint Louis Art Museum, where she co-curated The Shape of Abstraction: Selections from the OllieCollection. Assam earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in art history from Florida State University.

Thomas James 
Visual Arts Curator
Creative Alliance, Baltimore, MD

Thomas James is the Visual Arts Curator at Creative Alliance in Baltimore, MD. He is also an independent curator, cohort member of The Commons shared workspace in Annapolis, and a blogger for Urban Walls Brazil. He studied Business Administration at Frostburg State University where he first dove seriously into the world of art. His first exhibition was at Mountain City Center for the Arts, where he was interning. After graduation, Thomas took an opportunity to independently curate another exhibition, Darkest Before the Dawn at the Maryland Hall for the Creative Arts, and was eventually able to get the show to travel to another gallery in Washington, D.C. Thomas then went on to join the team at The Phillips Collection in Washington, D.C. and conduct a fellowship at The Maryland Federation of Art in Annapolis, Maryland before joining the Baltimore anchor institution, Creative Alliance in 2018.

Maria del Carmen Montoya 
Assistant Professor of Sculpture and Spatial Practices, Director of Graduate Studies, M.F.A. in Fine Arts and Social Practice, Studio Arts Program
Corcoran School of the Arts and Design

Carmen Montoya is the Assistant Professor of Sculpture and Spatial Practices, Director of Graduate Studies, M.F.A. in Fine Arts and Social Practice, Studio Arts Program. Her primary medium is the communal process of making meaning. As an artist, she seeks ways to catalyze this natural social phenomenon with situations that insist on the power of human-scale intervention in the presumed inevitability of everyday life. Her methodology is dialogic and collaborative. She believes that art can be a potent crucible for social change. Thus, her work is often about resistance and challenging norms, inverting power hierarchies and breaking rules, but she also traffics in beauty, memory, humor and other potentially radical forces for activating communities. She has lived and worked throughout Latin America where she served as the sole interpreter for an assembly of rural farms in San Salvador, an advocate for battered women in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico and an English teacher for a craft cooperative in Quetzaltenango, Guatemala. Her work has been shown at SIGGRAPH, PERFORMA, New Museum Festival of Ideas, ZKM | Museum of Contemporary Art, Venice Biennial of Architecture and Centro Mexicano para la Música y las Artes Sonoras, in Morelia, Mexico, where she co-founded an artist residency for multimedia performance art.