Folk Arts Apprenticeship Grant

Click here to access the RISCA grant portal for individuals.

Click here to see grants awarded at the April 1, 2019 deadline.


The folk arts are defined as the artistic practices that reflect the aesthetic heritage and tradition of a community. The learning process is passed on from generation to generation by word of mouth, apprenticeship, and imitation, which all continually binds communities together. Artistic traditions are reinvigorated by the conversations of shared heritage and cultural life. The deadline to apply for both grants is on April 1st.

Folk Arts Apprenticeship Grants are designed to foster the fusion of traditional folk artistic skills between a master and an apprentice who is already familiar with the genre. The program creates an opportunity specifically for individuals to unite through a shared cultural background. The folk arts are further defined as the artistic practices that sustains a community’s cultural identity and heritage by having traditions directly passed down from generation to generation.

Grant Amounts

Grant requests may range from $1,000 to $3,000.

The Council reserves the right to increase or decrease either the amount or the number of awards granted in any given year.

You must first meet with Elena Calderón Patiño, Director of Community Arts Program, 401-222-6996 before you apply online.


April 1, 11:59pm

If the deadline falls on a weekend or holiday, the deadline will be midnight the next business day. Any hard copy support materials must be received at the RISCA offices by this time. Postmarks do not apply; materials postmarked by the deadline date but received on a later date will not be counted as part of your application. Late or incomplete applications will not be reviewed.


To receive this grant you must meet these requirements:

  • At least eighteen years of age.
  • Not a high school, undergraduate or graduate student studying art or arts-related subjects.
  • United States citizen or Green Card holder
  • Legal Rhode Island resident from at least a year before the application date to when grant is made (more information available here).

Applications must be submitted by the master artist. Please note that RISCA encourages one-on-one apprenticeships. In some cases, more than one apprentice per master is appropriate and will be allowed.  There is no age requirement to participate as an apprentice. Apprentices under the age of 16 must submit a parent’s or legal guardian’s release or permission form as part of the application procedure.

Review Criteria

The peer panels will evaluate the application material based on the following review criteria:

  • Traditionalist and artistic merit of master artist.
  • Traditionalist and artistic merit of master artist.
  • Extent of apprentice’s prior familiarity with the traditional art form.
  • Extent of apprentice’s commitment to continuing the traditional art form.
  • Feasibility and effectiveness of the apprenticeship plan.
  • Quality and Feasibility of culminating public presentation.
  • Evidence of a public component