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Grants for the Arts - 3 Funding Sources for 2017

by Sherie Sanders on January 2, 2017
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Colored Pencils in an Article About Grants for the Arts Including NEA FundingHappy 2017! Everyone's new year should include a little beauty and imagination. Thus, we bring you three different art-related grants to kindle the spirit of creative expression. Whether it's fine art, performing art, music, the written word or a combination of them all, these programs will help keep your muses happy in 2017 and beyond.

The NEA Art Works Program

The National Endowment for the Arts is accepting applications for the first round of its 2017 Art Works Program. We first featured this grant in our Money for Music, Murals and More post where you can read further about it. Projects seeking funding should be:

  • Transformative in new or current art forms, take new approaches to the creation or presentation of art, or find new ways to engage the public
  • Distinctive with unconventional solutions and fresh insights
  • Able to be shared or emulated

Eligible applicants are Native American tribes, state and local governments, elementary and secondary schools, school districts, and state and regional education agencies. The deadlines for 2017 are February 16 and July 13.


NEA's Challenge America

Challenge America supports programs that offer artistic opportunities to underserved populations, including those that have limited access to art because of geography, ethnicity, economics or disability.


Selected Past Recipients
  • Rancho Cucamonga's Main Street Theatre enabled children of all socio-economic backgrounds to enjoy circus in the theater with its production of the musical, Mirette.
  • The City of Litchfield Park, Arizona, helped fund its Invitational Native American Fine Arts Festival with a Challenge America grant. The festival includes juried and master artists, hoop dancing, musical performances and silversmiths.
  • The African American Shakespeare Company of San Francisco premiered playwright Nambi E. Kelley's Xtigone, an adaptation of the Greek tragedy, Antigone. Using themes from its ancient counterpart, Xtigone is a contemporary exploration of gang violence and its impact on youth and families.
  • The Huntington Beach Municipal Art Center Foundation featured the cultural and historical relevance of skulls and bones through a series of family-friendly workshops, lectures and gallery tours as part of its Day of the Dead celebration.
  • The Marcus Jewish Community Center of Atlanta supported a production by the Jerrry Habima Theatre that gave aspiring actors with disabilities the opportunity to train, rehearse and perform with professionals.
  • The Marshall County Retired Senior Volunteer Program in Guntersville, Alabama, sponsored dulcimer workshops and a public concert for the rural populations of Marshall County.
  • The Nai-Ni Chen Dance Company of Fort Lee , New Jersey, planned a multidisciplinary festival that celebrated Chinese Lunar New Year through an eclectic art celebration. Venues included storytelling, contemporary and traditional art, dance and music and Calligraffiti, a multimedia presentation that explored the parallels between Chinese calligraphy and American graffiti.
  • Northeastern Illinois University conducted workshops, panel discussions, guest lectures and inmate art shows at Statesville Correctional Center for prisoners and their families.


Applying for the NEA's Challenge America

Eligible applicants are state and local governments, Native American tribes, educational institutions, school districts and nonprofits. See the NOFA for further requirements. Apply by April 13, 2017.


NEW MUSIC USA's Project Grant

New Music USA is a private foundation that gives over $1 million each year to help create and promote new musical works. Their Project Grants are typically smaller awards to individual artists and organizations. Apply by January 12, 2017. Later in the year, they also offer a Music Alive Grant to composers-in-residence in any-sized orchestra. The 2017 deadline for this opportunity has not been announced yet.


A Little Back to Work Help

Looking to get back into the work routine after the holidays? Here is a short grant-related cross- word puzzle to get you started. Just click on the box below:


Download Puzzle


Topics: Funding News

3 min read time