Dr. Jerry Hiura Next Gen Visual Artist Award

Monday, April 12, 2021Saturday, June 5, 2021

The San José Museum of Art Dr. Jerry Hiura Next Gen Visual Artist Award was created in honor of former Trustee Dr. Jerry Hiura, known affectionately as “Dr. Jerry”—a gifted individual dedicated to service, community, and the arts. A passionate advocate for multicultural arts, he served as chair of San José's Arts Commission and as president of the Arts Council of Silicon Valley. Dr. Jerry’s commitment towards advancing the local arts community in San José also included co-founding the Contemporary Asian Theater Scene, the Japantown Community Congress of San José, establishing the Three Japantown Landmarks Public Arts projects and Ikoinoba, quiet resting places, throughout Japantown. As a board member for Chopsticks Alley Art, he furthered the creative dialogue between Japanese and Vietnamese American art and history. Dr. Jerry’s countless contributions were recognized Statewide when he was appointed in 2002 by Governor Gray Davis to the California State Arts Council, where he served as vice-chair.

Dr. Jerry and his wife, fellow Trustee Lucia Cha, joined the Board of Trustees of the San José Museum of Art (SJMA) in 2017. He served on the Executive Committee and was a key partner in SJMA’s engagement initiatives with San José’s Vietnamese community.

As a dedicated artist himself, Dr. Jerry explored his creative endeavors in expressive forms. His paintings and drawings utilized a variety of media, including oils, watercolor, and acrylics—and ranged from whimsical topics to portraiture. As an author, poet, and editor, he published The Hawk's Well in 1986, a unique collection of Japanese American art and literature.

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Dr. Jerry Hiura Next Gen Visual Artist Award

The Dr. Jerry Hiura Next Gen Visual Artist Award for high school students honors Dr. Jerry’s passions through a scholarship that celebrates young visionary artists and supports their artistic practice and goals as they pursue higher education. 

Application Deadline: May 16, 2021

Award Amount: 1st prize: $3,000, 2nd / 3rd prizes: $1,000 each.



  • Community

Dr. Jerry was passionate about building and connecting communities and creative people. He strove to make our San José enjoyable and safe—where people could grow and prosper.

Look towards the people that surround you and the spaces you occupy that foster growth. In this inaugural scholarship opportunity, we invite you to visualize and interpret what community means to you.


  • Call for submissions (April 12–May 14)
  • Submissions juried (May 17–28)
  • Recipients notified (May 31)
  • Award ceremony (June Community Day–Saturday, June 5, 2021)


  • Open media, 2D pictorial artwork, in response to the theme above.
  • Only one submission per student.

Juried by 

  • Hung Liu
  • Enrique Chagoya
  • Lance Fung

Learn about the jurors.