Information on State Cultural Facilities Grant program


The State Cultural Facilities Grant Program is a matching grant program. It promotes careful planning for capital improvement, preservation, renovation and new construction projects for public and nonprofit artistic, performance centers, historic sites, museums and cultural art centers located around the state. Through its matching requirements, the program stimulates broader support and participation in cultural facility projects statewide.

Applications for the 2021 grant round (approximately $2.5 million) will be due on October 1. Applicants will be notified of grant decisions by December 31.

For more information, email

Public Feedback for New Individual Artist Grant Programs – let us know what you think!

In light of our strategic plan and values statement, the Governor-appointed Council which oversees RISCA had asked RISCA staff to reassess and – in some cases – restructure our grant programs to accurately reflect our newly articulated agency values and priorities. The first grant program RISCA restructured was our Investments in Arts and Culture (IAC) general operating support program for organizations, the process was completed in March 2021. Now, we are moving to RISCA’s Individual Artist granting programs. Instead of restructuring or re-envisioning the existing programs, the working group built brand new grant programs. Click here to read the guidelines.

To develop these new program guidelines, RISCA was guided by a Working Group comprised of 10 individual artists from around the Ocean State (see CAN YOU TELL ME MORE ABOUT THE WORKING GROUP? section for more information below). At this point in the process, we would like to hear your thoughts on the draft guidelines for four new grant programs. These grant programs will replace the existing Fellowships and Project Grants for Individuals. Folk Arts Apprenticeships and Folk Arts Fellowships will remain unchanged, and were not a part of this process.


In an effort to reflect our values of transparency, RISCA organized a Working Group to provide direct public input during the drafting process for this grant program – typically this phase of developing a program would be done by staff without direct public input. The public feedback phase is typically done for all new grant programs. We want this new program to be as relevant and effective for Rhode Island as possible – which means we need to hear from you!


The draft guidelines and an overview of the programs and changes are available hereWhen you are ready to provide feedback, you will use this survey – see the instructions within the survey for more details. If you are unable to input your responses into the survey for any reason, or if you need a copy of the guidelines in a format readable by screen readers or in a different language, please contact Mollie Flanagan at

Providing us feedback within the survey is important, as we will share the written feedback with RISCA’s Governing Council. To answer any questions you might have before answering the survey, we are hosting three Q & A sessions. While you do not need to attend these sessions in order to provide feedback, we do recommend attending one:

  • Q & A Information Session #1: Wednesday, August 25th, 2-4pm. Register to join the call via this link here.
  • Q & A Information Session #2: Monday, August 30th, 6-8pm. Register to join the call via this link here.

The feedback survey will be open until end of day September 6, 2021.


All survey responses will be compiled. Mollie will summarize the feedback, and provide that to the working group and to RISCA’s governing council. Then, Mollie will take all feedback into consideration, and write another draft of the grant guidelines. Then, these drafts will be reviewed and finalized by the working group. In their final review of these new guidelines in late September, RISCA’s Governing Council will consider feedback – and RISCA staff’s responses to the feedback – in their final approval of this program.


In February 2020, RISCA’s Governor-appointed Council leadership approved a timeline and process for the restructure of the individual artist granting programs. In particular, RISCA’s Governor-appointed Council wanted to ensure that RISCA’s support of individual artists is in alignment with the new strategic plan, and focused on equity and access.

As a part of the process, Individual Artists Program Mollie Flanagan stewarded a Working Group that reviewed a wide variety of materials, including RISCA’s strategic plan; grantmaking best practices; grant programs from other state and local arts agencies; and research on individual artist support. The Working Group then created the outline for four new grant programs, that would replace the current programs. Through multiple meetings and editing sessions, the working group and Mollie have created this draft of four new grant programs for public feedback. This working group is comprised of ten artists from around the state, working in a wide variety of disciplines and bring diverse experiences to the group.

State Arts Council opens arts grant applications with an Oct. 1 deadline

Key staff members lead workshops, meetings to navigate grant application process
First time grantees encouraged to apply

The Rhode Island State Council on the Arts (RISCA) announced today that applications are now open for grants to nonprofit organizations and individual artists; projects for artists in education, schools and healthcare settings; folk art apprenticeships; and fellowships in folk arts and for individual artists. The deadline to complete an application is Oct. 1.

To assist in the application process, Arts Council staff members have scheduled virtual workshops and office hours throughout August and September. The online meetings will focus on best practices as well as help with budget planning. First time applicants are encouraged.

Upcoming workshop are on Wednesday, Aug. 18, 1-2:30 p.m., and Monday, Sept. 13, noon-1:30 p.m. Registration is required, and you can register by clicking here for Aug. 18, and here for Sept. 13. To learn more about joining a workshop or schedule an appointment to meet online with a staff member, click here.

“Investments in the arts not only benefit the working arts sector but improve the well-being of Rhode Islanders and are a key economic driver. The pandemic has been particularly difficult for artists and arts organizations. We encourage the arts and culture community to apply for this funding. Our staff is available to help with the application process. If you’re new to submitting a grant application to RISCA, or you just want a refresher, reach out to our staff and/or participate in a virtual workshop.”

Randall Rosenbaum, Executive Director

 FY22 fall grant applications are now open for the following programs:

  • Available to organizations, Arts Access Grants support arts and culture programs throughout the state that demonstrate excellent artistic, education and cultural value, as well as engagement with and relevance to their community.
  • Big Yellow School Bus provides funds to Rhode Island schools to underwrite the transportation costs for in-person cultural field trips such as live music, dance, theatre performances, exhibits at art museums, etc. Additionally, smaller grant awards are available to support participation in virtual arts or cultural experiences. (Grant applications open on Aug. 10.)
  • Fellowships are unrestricted awards that encourage the creative development of artists by enabling them to set aside time to pursue their work and achieve specific creative and career goals. The grants are given out in the following disciplines:
    • Choreography
    • Crafts
    • Drawing & Printmaking
    • Film & Video
    • Folk Arts
    • Fiction
    • Music Composition
    • New Genres
    • Painting
    • Photography
    • Poetry
    • Playwriting/Screenwriting
    • Three-Dimensional Art
  • Folk Arts Apprenticeships are designed to foster the sharing of traditional (folk) artistic skills between a master and an apprentice, who is already familiar with the genre. The program creates this opportunity specifically for individuals who share a common cultural heritage.
  • Folk Arts Fellowships provide support to individual artists who demonstrate the highest level of skill and accomplishments in their craft. The folk arts are defined as those artistic practices which are community or family-based and express that community’s aesthetic heritage and tradition.
  • Project Grants in Education and Project Grants in Education for Individuals support artists and cultural organizations collaborating with schools and other educational entities.
  • Project Grants in Healthcare offer matching grants for arts projects that connect teaching artists with healthcare settings.

For more information on RISCA’s arts grants, click here.