make a donation
buy tickets

Meet the Southern Studies Fellows | Welcome Reception

Sep 15, 2021 / 5pm - 7 pm

Calendar: Event/Performance
Categories: Visual Art
Age Groups: All

Grab a beer, wine, or light refreshments on the Zimmerli Plaza at Chapman Cultural Center and help us welcome the Southern Studies Fellows to Spartanburg!

The Southern Studies Fellowship in Arts and Letters is a first-of-its-kind program that brings one early-career artist and one early-career writer to Spartanburg, South Carolina, for a nine-month fellowship of research, creativity, teaching, and travel, culminating in a collaborative project informed by the region. This program is designed to allow the fellows to immerse themselves in the culture of the American South, culminating with a final joint project informed by their studies and experiences in the region. 

Can't make it? Learn more about each of them below. 

Morgan Thomas

Morgan Thomas is a writer from Gulf Breeze, Florida. Their work has appeared in The Atlantic Monthly,  Electric Literature, them., the Kenyon Review Online, and Storyquarterly. They’ve received support from the Bread Loaf Work-Study Program and the Fulbright Foundation. Manywhere, their debut story collection, is forthcoming from publisher Farrar, Straus & Giroux’s MCD imprint in January 2022. 

Morgan earned a BA in English and a BS in Zoology from the University of Florida in 2014 and their MFA in Fiction from the University of Oregon in 2016. In addition to their work as a writer, they have advocated for Two Spirit and LGBTQ+ communities for three years. 

Visit Morgan’s website to learn more about their work.


Ben Winans

Ben Winans is an interdisciplinary artist who engages in old and new media to tell stories regarding his upbringing in Southern evangelical Christianity. Through his multimedia works, Ben offers a broad discussion on Christian nationalism, a mediation of cultural and national identity informed by his family’s missionary work in Africa and Japan, and the assertion that what we believe matters. 

Ben has earned a Bachelor in Fine Arts from Virginia Commonwealth University in 2018 and a Masters in Fine Arts from the University of Michigan in 2021. His work began in 2014 as an Artist Assistant for Ben Sloat, and at a gallery in Richmond, Virginia. Ben is currently an Exhibitions Assistant for Stamps Gallery and was a Graduate Student Instructor for several art classes at Stamps School of Art & Design. Winan’s hard work has been recognized throughout the years through the John Roos Memorial Scholarship for Artists Working in the Humanities in 2017, the Smucker-Wagstaff Grant in 2019 and 2020, and the Jean-Paul Slasser Award for recognition of excellence, M.F.A. Thesis Project.

Visit Ben’s website to learn more about his work.

Event Photos