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Tennessee Craft



Master Artist Apprentice Program (MAAP)

Master Artist Apprentice Program (MAAP)

Tennessee Craft, in partnership with the Tennessee Arts Commission, offers the Master Artist Apprentice Program (MAAP) to open the door for artists to learn traditional and contemporary craft skills from master craft artists.

All artists in the program are asked to choose challenging goals that will catapult their skills and knowledge as craft artists. The Master Artist Apprentice Program was created to help artists reach the next level of their professional development from a six-month one-on-one mentorship, not typically available in most learning environments. Click here for a comprehensive overview of the program and guidelines.

Awarded apprentices receive a $1,900 stipend to work with their chosen master from December 1, 2023, to June 15, 2024. The application deadline has been extended to November 7, 2023. The application for next year’s program will open in Summer 2024. For more information, email Tennessee Craft.

Meet the Master Artists!

Read Brie Flora’s bio HERE.

Read Doug Lowman’s bio HERE.

Read Sherri Warner Hunter’s bio HERE.



How do know if I’m ready to be an apprentice? Prospective apprentices should demonstrate investment and skill in the art form they wish to continue learning along with a readiness to take their skills to the next level. In addition, eligible apprentices must be residents of Tennessee, at least 18 years of ag,e and cannot be currently enrolled in an arts-related degree program.

There’s a master I’m interested in, but I’m worried I live too far away. Can I still apply? We find that the most successful master/apprentice partnerships are no more than a two- to three-hour one-wayy drive apart. The good news is that given our state’s geography, two to three hours encompasses more distance than you might think! We suggest using an online map driving estimate calculator to see if your master’s hometown residence qualifies. If not, you can still apply; however, you’ll just need to demonstrate on your application how you’ll overcome the distance barrier (i.e., Skype or Zoom meetings in between studio visits, paying for lodging overnight in the master’s hometown in order to have concentrated weekend work sessions, etc.)

I think I’m ready to be an apprentice, as long as my busy work schedule doesn’t get in the way. Can I create a flexible work schedule with my master, or is that set by someone else? To a large degree, you’re able to set your own schedule. Your master will work with you to try to find suitable meeting times that fit both your schedules. In the past, some partners liked to meet weekly, others meet only once or twice a month. It all depends on how flexible the master is with his/her time, how often you’ll be meeting, how long your work sessions will last each time, as well as other factors such as distance apart and communication outside of the studio. Whatever work schedule you set with your master, keep in mind that you must meet together a minimum of 80-120 hours, and within the December 1 to June 15 time period.

I think I’m ready to apply, but the goals section has me stumped. What kind of goals should I include? The goals you write on your application form are simply a starting point. Don’t get too mired down in specifics. We’re looking for goals that demonstrate your eagerness to learn, and give us some sense of what things you’re hoping to accomplish. One big goal, or up to three smaller goals, are about all you’ll have time for. An example of a large goal if you were applying under furniture might be something like, “I want to learn how to make a Shaker rocking chair.” You could then elaborate on this goal to state all the joinery techniques making this chair might involve, or that you’d like to learn how to steam bend wood, etc.

If I’m selected as an apprentice, what can my $1,900 stipend be used for? Award funding can be used for any number of apprenticeship-related expenses such as: craft supplies, tools, educational books on the subject matter, travel, fuel, etc. Note: Funding is intended to partially offset expenses of time and resources incurred by the apprentice; however, it is understood that participation in the program may involve additional expenses which shall be the responsibility of the apprentice.


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