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Artist Support Grants

The Regional Arts Commission’s (RAC) Artist Support Grant (ASG) supports the career advancement of individual artists. This grant provides direct funds for projects or creative opportunities in all artistic disciplines. The goal is to encourage creativity, innovation, entrepreneurship, and sustained commitment to artistic work.

  • ABOUT
  • ELIGIBILITY
  • SCHEDULE
  • REVIEW CRITERIA
  • HOW TO APPLY

ABOUT

Amount Awarded

$500 - $3000

Details

Unfortunately, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, RAC’s revenues have been dramatically affected because of the significant drop in hotel/motel occupancy which generates the tax receipts that are RAC’s primary source of funding. Due to this reduction of revenues, RAC will have very limited financial resources over the next year. Both the Fall 2020 Artist Support Grants and 2021 Artist Fellowship applications scheduled to open in July 2020 have been postponed. Please check back periodically for updates. All artists who have previously applied via the grants.racstl.org website will also receive an update via email once new dates are available.

The Regional Arts Commission (RAC) remains steadfast in our mission to support local artists through these uncertain times. We are proud to announce the awarding of nearly $500,000 to over 500 local working artists through our Artist Relief Fund grants during the months of April through July 2020. We are grateful to our partners who made the virtual fundraising event, Arts United STL a reality, raising over $350,000 for the Artist Relief Fund.  Additionally, through our Artist Support Grants, we were able to support 21 artists with over $53,000 during our Spring 2020 grant cycle and commit full funding of $200,000 to our 2020 Artist Fellows.

As the largest funder of individual artists in the area, RAC is committed to supporting individual artists through our grantmaking and other programs. We hope to continue offering grant opportunities as soon as our revenues allow. We will update the RAC website as information warrants.

ELIGIBILITY

Eligibility for Grant

An individual artist is eligible to apply for an Artist Support Grant if they meet the following requirements:

  • The artist is 19 years or older.
  • The artist is not enrolled as a full-time undergraduate student.
  • The artist is a current resident of St. Louis City or County and has maintained their primary residence in St. Louis City or County for at least one year. (Documentation is required.)
  • In the past three years, has created and presented their own original works to the public or performed for the public. (Documentation is required.)
  • The artist has not received an Artist Support Grant in the past 16 months.
  • The artist has not received an Artist Fellowship in the past 18 months.
  • The artist is in good standing with RAC, with no delinquent reports or required grant documentation.

Artists may apply for both an Artist Support Grant and an Artist Fellowship simultaneously. If selected as an Artist Fellow, the applicant will no longer be eligible for an Artist Support Grant in the same cycle.

Note: These grants are for individual artists. 501(c)(3) status or fiscal sponsorship is not required. If you wish to apply to RAC as an organization, please see our Organization Grants.

For more information about the Artist Support Grant eligibility and restrictions, please see the Individual Artist Grants Guidelines (PDF).


Grant Restrictions

  • A proposed project cannot receive funding from multiple RAC grant opportunities. This includes:
    • Projects where an individual artist is partnering with, employed by, or contracted by a RAC organizational grant recipient, and
    • Individual artists collaborating on the same project and applying separately.
    • Multiple applications for the same project will render all applications ineligible to receive funding.
  • Grant funds cannot be designated for such things as:
    • Personal vacation
    • Full-time college tuition
    • Or any items not directly related to an artist’s personal, professional, artistic, or project development.
  • Grant funds may not pay for projects for which the main intent is:
    • Fundraising or charity,
    • The presentation of other artist’s works, including curation, archiving, journalism (where the applicant’s work is not the primary content,) or
    • A commission.
  • No part of the grant may be used for reimbursement of expenses prior to the applicant notification date.
  • Any funds not expended for the purposes of the grant as applied for must be returned to RAC.
  • No part of the grant may be used directly or indirectly to participate in or intervene in any political campaign on behalf of, or in opposition to, any candidate for public office or to attempt to influence legislation or to support or promote, directly or indirectly terrorism or violent acts.
  • Organizations are ineligible to apply.

SCHEDULE

Grant Schedule

Unfortunately, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, RAC’s revenues have been dramatically affected because of the significant drop in hotel/motel occupancy which generates the tax receipts that are RAC’s primary source of funding. Due to this reduction of revenues, RAC will have very limited financial resources over the next year. Both the Fall 2020 Artist Support Grants and 2021 Artist Fellowship applications scheduled to open in July 2020 have been postponed. Please check back periodically for updates. All artists who have previously applied via the grants.racstl.org website will also receive an update via email once new dates are available.

REVIEW CRITERIA

Grant Review Criteria

Discipline Readers will evaluate the Artist Support Grant applications based on the following criteria:

  • Artistic Accomplishment
  • Clarity on How the Grant Funds Will Be Used
  • Commitment to Deepening and Expanding Artist Work
  • Artist Support Grant Funds Will Further Artistic and Career Goals
  • Immediacy of Need: Timeframe of project or immediacy of need

Review Process

Each Artist Support Grant application is read by two knowledgeable art practitioners and experts from the following groups:

  • RAC staff
  • Members of the St. Louis arts community
  • Members of the national arts community

Each application will be rated according to RAC’s review criteria. Once readers have rated all applications, RAC staff will select the top-rated applicants from each reader group based on the ratings and will recommend grantees to the Grants Committee until the funds are exhausted for each round. The Grants Committee will then recommend to the full Commission, who will approve the final grant awards.

For more information about the Artist Support Grant eligibility and restrictions, please see the Individual Artist Grants Guidelines (PDF).

 

HOW TO APPLY

How to Apply for this Grant

Unfortunately, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, RAC’s revenues have been dramatically affected because of the significant drop in hotel/motel occupancy which generates the tax receipts that are RAC’s primary source of funding. Due to this reduction of revenues, RAC will have very limited financial resources over the next year. Both the Fall 2020 Artist Support Grants and 2021 Artist Fellowship applications scheduled to open in July 2020 have been postponed. Please check back periodically for updates. All artists who have previously applied via the grants.racstl.org website will also receive an update via email once new dates are available.

When the application reopens, the grant process has several steps.

  1. Artist Applies for grant via grants.racstl.org
  2. Discipline Readers read and rate each proposal using RAC’s review criteria.
  3. Staff reviews ratings and recommends the top applications in each discipline until funds are exhausted.
  4. The Grants Committee, a subcommittee of RAC’s Board of Commissioners, makes final recommendations to the full Commission.
  5. RAC’s Board of Commissioners votes on the recommendations made by the Grants Committee.
  6. Notification goes out to all applicants after the full Commission meets and approves the grants.
  7. Public announcement of grant awards will be made.

Previous to the application deadline, RAC also hosts a number of “How to Apply Workshops,” the schedule for which will be listed here once the application is ready to open again. These workshops are a valuable resource for grant seekers and give tips on how to present a strong grant proposal.

If you have questions regarding RAC’s individual Artist Grants, please contact Olivia Lahs-Gonzales, Associate Director of Artist Programs, at olivia@racstl.org.