MacArthur 2012 fellows include Uta Barth, Chris Thile


Los Angeles photographer Uta Barth and mandolinist Chris Thile are among the 23 people who have been selected to receive the prestigious “genius grant” from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.

The list of 2012 fellows also includes Claire Chase, a flutist and arts entrepreneur; An-My Le, a photographer; Benoît Rolland, a bow maker for stringed instruments; and Natalia Almada, a documentary filmmaker.

Receiving a MacArthur fellowship is a highly lucrative honor. Each fellow receives a monetary award of $100,000 a year for five years. This year’s recipients range in age from 31 to 66.


Barth was born in Germany and currently lives in Los Angeles. Her photographs have been exhibited in museums around the world, including the Museum of Modern Art in New York and the Museum of Contemporary Art in L.A.

She is a recipient of two National Endowment for the Arts fellowships and the 2005 Guggenheim Fellowship.

Thile lives in New York and grew up in Southern California in Idyllwild. He currently performs classical and jazz mandolin throughout the world. (He performed with the L.A. Chamber Orchestra in 2010.) He is also a composer and was a member of the folk band Nickel Creek.

Chase is an accomplished flutist who leads the musical group International Contemporary Ensemble.

Other notable 2012 fellows include author Junot Diaz, documentarian Laura Poitras and writer Dinaw Mengestu.


Music review: Mandolinist extraordinaire Chris Thile


MacArthur ‘genius’ grants go to cellist, architect, jazz musician

Art review: Uta Barth’s works ‘focus’ on emptiness filled with an ephemeral plenitude of light