State Arts Council opens arts grant applications with an April 1 deadline

Four of the five grant programs have been revamped to be more equitable and accessible
Key staff members to lead workshops, meetings to navigate grant application process

The Rhode Island State Council on the Arts (RISCA) announced today that applications are now open for grants to arts and culture organizations, individual artists and artists in healthcare. The deadline to complete an application is April 1.

Four of the five grants being offered this granting cycle are newly updated and revamped to align with the agency’s new Strategic Plan, and mission and values statement. RISCA staff members, the Governor-appointed Arts Council leadership, and representatives from the arts and culture community partnered to restructure four of the five grant programs opening for applications today. The new and revamped programs better serve the arts and cultural needs of RI communities.

“Congratulations to our State Arts Agency for all of the thorough work and long hours to update and make its grant programs more relevant to our arts and culture community,” Governor McKee said. “The grants being announced today continue to ensure RI’s reputation nationally as an arts and culture destination.”

The grant programs being offered include:

  • Restructured and newly named Project Grants for Organizations (PGO) was redesigned by a 10-person BIPOC majority working group comprised of individuals working or volunteering at arts and culture organizations throughout Rhode Island. The grant provides grants of up to $3,000 in support of arts and culture projects that are relevant and meaningful to a Rhode Island community or communities.
  • The new Community Engaged Project Grants (CEPG) provide funding of up to $3,000 for artists or groups of artists to create arts and culture projects that are directly and actively engaged with Rhode Island residents.
  • The new Make Art Grant program provides grants of up to $3,000 for artists or groups of artists to create or continue specific artwork in any discipline. Projects must have specific goals, though completion and public showing of the art is not required.
    • For both programs for individual artists, projects must be artist instigated and organized, outside of institutional support and structures. Open to projects of all arts disciplines, from artists of all levels, funds can be used to support experimentation, materials, space rental, paying collaborators, documentation, and artist stipends.
  • Project Grants in Healthcare will be updated and revamped this year. The program currently offers matching grants for arts projects that connect teaching artists with healthcare settings such as hospitals, hospice and community health agencies. Teaching artists partner with one or more licensed healthcare staff to implement a project.
  • Some of the main features of the revamped and newly implemented General Operating Support for Organizations (GOS-O), sets explicit goals for recruitment of Black, Indigenous and people of color (BIPOC) organizations and underrepresented cities and towns. The program was restructured with a 36-member working group representing 22 arts and culture organizations throughout Rhode Island. The grant program opens on Feb. 15.

Read more about our grants.

“We are proud to announce these newly updated granting programs. They are transformative, inclusive, open and transparent,” RISCA’s spokesperson Faye Zuckerman said. “By convening a diverse group of key members of our arts community for input and feedback, we were able to ensure that our Strategic Plan, grant programs and mission are more accessible and equitable.”

To assist in the application process and meeting the April 1 deadline, Arts Council staff members have scheduled virtual workshops and office hours throughout February and March. The online meetings will focus on best practices as well as help with budget planning. First time applicants are encouraged to apply.

The workshops are:

  • Grant Writing and Budget, Thursday, Feb. 24, at noon-1:30 p.m. Click here to RSVP
    • Tuesday, March 1, at 5 p.m.-6:30 p.m. Click here to RSVP.
  • Individual Artist Grants, Wednesday, March 9, at noon-1:30 p.m. Click here to RSVP;
    • Wednesday, March 16 at 5:30-7 p.m. Click here to RSVP.
  • Project Grants for Organizations, Thursday, March 10, at 10 a.m.-11 a.m. Click here to RSVP.
    • Tuesday, March 15, at 4 p.m.-5:30 p.m. Click here to RSVP.
  • General Operating Support for Organizations, Friday, March 11, at 10 a.m.-11:30 p.m. Click here to RSVP.

Read more about workshops and office hours.

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