Cheryse Dyllan and Cristian Rodriguez in Village Theatre’s "How to Break" (2023). Photo by Angela Sterling.
Cheryse Dyllan and Cristian Rodriguez in Village Theatre’s "How to Break" (2023). Photo by Angela Sterling.

Art Project Grant

Project Support for the 2025 Fiscal Year (July 1, 2024 – June 30, 2025)

Application Closes April 23, 2024

View Guidelines 

About this Grant

ArtsWA is offering support to groups providing art programming with and for the people of Washington State. Organizations do not need to have an arts-focused mission to apply.

Funding amounts: Applicants can request between $2,000-$5,000 for their project. If awarded, grant amounts can vary depending on panel recommendations and available funds.

Important dates:

  • Application open: March 12, 2024 – April 23, 2024 at 5 p.m.
  • Application workshops: March 19 & April 16, 2024 at 12 p.m.
  • Notification of application results: by August 14, 2024
  • Funds can cover project expenses that incur between July 1, 2024 – June 30, 2025
    • This is a reimbursement grant, meaning that payments will be made after the grant recipient expends funds, and after expense documentation and invoice forms have been submitted to and approved by ArtsWA.
  • Final report due July 31, 2025

Application information

Eligibility Requirements

Projects that are eligible will:

  • Be open to the public
  • Happen between July 1, 2024 – June 30, 2025
  • Have arts as a main component
  • Take place in Washington State

Eligible applicant groups should have a history of producing at least one project or program in the past, and must be one of the following types of organizations:

  • 501(c)(3) nonprofit
    • 501(c)(3)s must have current state corporate nonprofit status and current federal tax-exempt determination under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code.
  • Local Arts Agencies
    • Local Arts Agencies are officially designated by a local government to provide art services to the public on behalf of the local government. Learn more here.
  • Tribal Governments
  • Group fiscally sponsored by a 501(c)(3) nonprofit

Who Is Not Eligible?

  • Recipients of the ArtsWA FY24-25 General Operating Support or Arts Service Organization Support grants*

*Recipients of the special 6-month General Operating Support grant for the period July 1, – December 10, 2023 are eligible to apply for FY25 Project Support

  • Individuals
  • For-profit organizations
  • Government agencies, universities, colleges, academic departments, and K-12 schools

Full list of what ArtsWA can and cannot fund as a state agency.

Before you apply:

  1. Read the entire guidelines to make sure your group is eligible and a good fit for the grant.
  2. Get your all your information ready! You will need:
    • Your project budget. This will include an estimation of your in-kind and volunteer support.
    • One to three work samples. View Work Sample Guidelines.
    • For 501(c)(3)s, you’ll need your Unique Entity Identifier from SAM.gov, your Statewide Vendor Number if you already have one, your Federal Tax ID (EIN), your IRS Letter of Determination, and a copy of your annual operating budget. If you are fiscally sponsored, you’ll need this information from your fiscal sponsor.

Application Overview

  • Eligibility Form: Before you begin, you will answer a few questions to verify that your organization is eligible.
  • Pre-Application: Organization Information. Enter your contact information, legal status, and organization identifiers. Upload additional documents required by Washington State to ensure public funds are allocated correctly.
  • Application Section A: Project Overview. Give logistical details about your project, select your art practices and audiences, describe your project goals in a narrative response, and upload your work samples.
  • Application Section B: People. Answer two narrative questions about your community and your staff/contractors/volunteers.
  • Application Section C: Budget. Tell us how much funding you are requesting, fill out a budget worksheet, and answer one narrative question about your funding strategy.

Narrative Questions

Narrative responses can be submitted as either written responses or in an audio and/or video format. You can answer some questions with a video upload and others with a written response. For each question you will choose:

  • “Write a response:” Enter your written responses in the text boxes below each question. There is a 250-word limit for most questions, but your responses do not need to meet this limit.
  • “Upload a video or audio response:” Upload your files in the sections below each question. Most video and audio responses should be no more than 1 minute in length.

Guidance on video/audio responses: You will not be evaluated on the quality of your video/audio. This option is meant for applicants who prefer verbal communication over written communication. We suggest capturing your response in one take without background noise for audio submissions, and capturing video with a phone or simple camera that includes the speaker’s face(s). Make sure to answer the question as fully as you can. We recommend writing out your answer to read or reference when you record.

Evaluation Criteria

  1. Art Programming (25 points)

Well scoring applications will have a project that:

    • Reflects strong artistic merit by uplifting and encouraging robust participation in creativity and art.
    • Centers art in the services provided.
    • Includes art programs that are responsive to the communities served.
  1. Community Access and Responsiveness (25 points)

Well scoring applications:

    • Describe engaging, accessible, and culturally relevant ways for the community to participate in and experience the project.
    • Describe direct actions that increase access to the project for communities negatively impacted by structural inequity (i.e. rural communities, BIPOC community members, mental or physical disability, LGBTQIA2S+, immigrant or refugee communities)
    • Solicit, consider, and include community input in project planning.
  1. Personnel (25 points)

Well scoring projects:

    • Have staff, contractors, or volunteers that are qualified (whether through lived experience, training, etc.) to work with the community the project serves especially if serving vulnerable communities (disabled, youth, etc.)
    • Have staff, contractors, or volunteers that are qualified (whether through lived experience, training, etc.) to provide the arts services your project offers.
  1. Budget (25 points)

Well scoring project budgets:

    • Reflect financial support for applicant organization’s personnel/staff and contracted professionals.
    • If the applicant organization is currently operating as a volunteer organization, tracking volunteer hours in the in-kind section of the budget ensures that the applicant organization is fully aware of what it costs to do what you do. This is important for panelists reviewing your application.
    • Have a clear, feasible, funding strategy for the project.

Do income and expenses need to match on my project budget?

Make sure your income total and your expense total are as close to matching as possible when you are filling out the budget table in the application. Because we accept estimates for some amounts, if your budget is higher on the income-side that is fine. However, you should not have more expenses for your project than income.

How can I make my grant application stronger?

  • Be specific! Paint a clear picture in the panelists’ minds by giving solid details about what you will do and how you will do it, especially if you provide services to vulnerable communities (children, youth, elders, veterans, trauma survivors, etc.)
  • Review the evaluation criteria to strengthen your responses to narrative questions.
  • For work samples, photos or videos of your work-in-practice help tell your story better than posters or PDFs.

Can organizations apply for multiple ArtsWA grants?

Allowable: Applicants for Grants to Organizations programs can apply for and receive grants from other ArtsWA programs if they support different projects, expenses, and services. Other ArtsWA program grants include:

Not allowable: Applying to different grants within the Grants to Organizations Program. If you applied for the Emerging Organization Grant, your organization is not eligible for the Art Project Grant.

What happens after we apply?

Screening for Eligibility: Staff will screen your application to make sure your application meets eligibility requirements.

Panel: All applications are reviewed and scored by a panel. Panelists ensure that people from across Washington State are an integral part of distributing public money. After the application window closes, panelists representing a variety of creative fields and backgrounds will review applications and make recommendations for funding to ArtsWA’s Board of Commissioners.

Board Approval: Recommendations will go to the ArtsWA Board for approval on August 7, 2024.

Notification: Notification of award or decline will go out by August 14, 2024. Awarded applicants can expect their contract and instructions on how to receive funds in the next weeks after notification. Learn more about managing a grant here.

What are my chances of receiving a grant?

This changes from year to year depending on number of applications received. ArtsWA can set aside approximately $100,000 next fiscal year for art project support, which averages 25 groups funded. Based on previous years, we predict nearly 400 applications will be submitted for this grant, meaning only the highest scoring 6% of applications can be funded.

The best thing you can do to increase your chances of receiving a grant is to submit a strong application. Although we can never guarantee you will get a grant, we encourage you to reach out to us to discuss your application, especially if this is your first time applying. We love hearing from you, learning about your goals, and providing helpful tips based on your goals. Hopefully, we will make you feel more confident pressing the submit button for this highly competitive program.

Additional Information

Accessibility

Federally funded projects must be accessible to people with disabilities. You can use this accessibility checklist when planning your programs. You do not need to check all boxes to be eligible for funding; this is simply a worksheet and resource for your organization.

ArtsWA accepts grant applications via an online form. If you require an alternate format or assistance to access the application, please reach out to us at the contact information below or Alexis Sarah, ArtsWA Accessibility Coordinator, alexis.sarah@arts.wa.gov or at 360-228-6359.

Civil Rights

All applicants for funding from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) are required to certify that they are following the civil rights statutes that govern nondiscrimination in Federally assisted programs. For a FAQ on Civil Rights for applicants and to ensure your organization complies, click here.

Appeals

Unsuccessful applicants can appeal in accordance with Washington Administrative Code (WAC) 30.12.036, found here.

About ArtsWA

ArtsWA is the Washington State Arts Commission. The Washington State Legislature and the National Endowment for the Arts fund our programs. Grants are contingent on available state and federal funding. ArtsWA complies with all local, state, and federal laws and regulations concerning civil and human rights. For more information regarding Washington State Arts Commission’s policies on Accessibility, Diversity, and Nondiscrimination, click here.

Contact us

Ashley Marshall, Grants to Organizations Program Assistant, at 360-485-1524 or ashley.marshall@arts.wa.gov

Miguel Guillén, Grants to Organizations Program Manager, at 360-252-9970 or miguel.guillen@arts.wa.gov