Artist Opportunity Grants support Arizona artists as they take advantage of specific, unique opportunities that have the potential to significantly impact their professional growth.
Applicants must be individuals and may submit only one application per cycle. Organizations are not eligible to apply. At the time an application is submitted and the grant is awarded an applicant must be:
- 18 years of age or older and
- a resident of Arizona.
Full-time faculty at a college or university are not eligible to apply. Adjunct faculty are eligible to apply. An individual may receive only one Opportunity Grant in any category each fiscal year.
As this grant is available to artists working in all disciplines and at any stage in their career, a wide array of opportunities could be considered eligible, so long as there is potential for significant impact in one or more of these three categories:
Introduce Your Work to New Audiences
An opportunity to present your work in a significant way that will expose your work to new audiences or raise your artistic profile.
Develop New Skills
An opportunity to develop new artistic skills though participation in activities such as conferences, artist residencies, workshops, fellowships, master classes, or apprenticeships.
Develop Your Artistic Entrepreneurship
An opportunity to expand your entrepreneurial capacity, such as the production of marketing materials, website development, payment of professional fees (lawyers, accountants, etc.), and any practice-related capital expenses (like equipment purchases, materials, services, rental fees for equipment or facility, etc.)
Keep in mind you will be asked to describe how engaging in the proposed opportunity will advance your work. Further, the opportunity should not duplicate previous work or experiences, but should represent a new or further developing professional endeavor.
Grant funds may be used for any of the following (this list is not comprehensive):
- Equipment purchases, materials, or services needed to fulfill/engage in the opportunity
- Rental fees, including equipment, instruments, facility (including short-term space and studio rentals), etc., which support the artistic opportunity Preparation, freight, and/or shipping costs
- Costs associated with documentation of the opportunity
- Travel necessary to engage in the opportunity (see Funding Restrictions for more information)
- Registration fees
- Professional fees which support the artistic opportunity
- Grant funds cannot be used for any projects, or days of a project, that take place before the start date of the cycle in which they are submitted, and/or after the end of the fiscal year (June 30, 2024). If your full project timeline starts before or ends after the funding period, you are still eligible to apply and should articulate the full timeline in your application, but should only request and use grant funds for project activities taking place within the funding period.
Applicants are encouraged to do the following prior to beginning their application:
If you require accommodation in completing this application, or otherwise participating in the grant application process, please contact Director of Artist Programs Kesha Bruce at [email protected] or (602) 771-6530.
Prepare Narrative Responses
You can type your proposal narrative or you can upload audio recordings of your responses. For each narrative question you will find a maximum word count (not character) and a maximum recording length. If you share your proposal narrative via audio recordings, keep it simple and to the point. Don’t worry about impressing the panelists with your recording technique, just make sure we can hear and understand you. All audio files must be uploaded as MP3 files (.mp3).
Some applicants find it helpful to develop the narrative portion of the application using word processing software, outside the application platform. This allows them to thoughtfully draft their responses and monitor their word counts for each question. A Word document version of the narrative questions can be downloaded here.
Create an Account
In the interest of improving the user experience for applicants and reviewers, the Arizona Commission on the Arts has transitioned to a new submission platform this year: SurveyMonkey Apply. Whether you are a new or returning applicant, you will need to create an account on our new platform at https://azarts.smapply.io/.
click/tap the “Apply Now” button below. You do not have to complete the application in one session; at any point you can save a draft of your application and complete or submit it later.
- Describe the opportunity you will engage in with the grant funds. What are your specific proposed activities? (250 words)
- Tell us about your artistic practice and why this opportunity is appropriate and vital to your work at this stage of your career. (250 words)
- How will engaging in this opportunity address at least one of the eligible opportunity categories (introduce your work to new audiences, develop new skills, or develop your artistic entrepreneurship)? (250 words)
- What next steps in your artistic career would be made possible after completing this opportunity? How does it tie to your future artistic goals and trajectory? (250 words)
If you share your proposal narrative in an audio recording keep it simple and to the point. The recording should be just you, describing your proposal and answering the four questions listed above.
Please do not include edits of your work samples. Production quality of this recording will not be considered in your review. Just make sure we can hear and understand you and keep editing and post-production embellishment to a minimum.
Timeline of Proposed Activities
Include a timeline that details the proposed activities related to your opportunity in the table provided in SurveyMonley Apply.
This may be a single date, such as “Day of Workshop – April 12, 2024” or a list like the following:
- Preparing Sheet Music for Printing & Rehearsing Flute Solo. – January-February 2024
- Record with Jane Doe at AZArtsy Recording Studio Solo Pieces – March 3, 2024
- Record with Jane Doe at AZArtsy Recording Studio Finalized Group Compositions – March 6-8, 2024
Submit work samples you’ve completed within the last 10 years which are relevant to the opportunity. From the list to the right, please choose the most appropriate artistic work sample format to represent your discipline:
- 3 minutes of recorded audio, or
- 3 minutes of recorded video, or
- 6 images, or
- 3 pages of double-spaced text, or
- Combination of materials listed above: Please edit accordingly for no more than a total of 3 minutes of reviewing time (2 images = 1 min. 1 page = 1 min.)
You will be asked to provide the following information (as applicable) for each work sample you submit.:
- Title of work
- Date completed/premiered
- Location/site of exhibitions or presentation of work
- Dimensions of work
- Medium of work
Please do not submit promotional materials. Panelists can’t assess your work based on an exhibition poster, an event program, or a published review. Remember to test your work samples as you upload them.
Work Samples Description
Provide a brief description for each work sample as it relates to your opportunity.
Experience List and Description
Provide 3 to 10 arts-based experiences you have engaged in over the past 10 years that relate to the opportunity you want to engage in and briefly describe how each experience demonstrates progression of your artistic trajectory leading to the opportunity.
The experience list helps the panel situate the opportunity you propose in a broader context; please briefly describe the overall relevancy of the experiences you listed to the opportunity. (up to 200 words)
List only eligible expenses (see list on page 2 of the Artist Opportunity Grant guidelines) related to your proposal. Include any additional information you’d like the panel to know. If your eligible expenses exceed $1,500, please tell us how you will fund the rest of your proposed activities. If some expenses are outside the funding period, indicate which line items the grant funds would cover.
Grant Amount Requested
Indicate the grant amount you are requesting, based on eligible expenses, between $500 and $1,500.
If your eligible expenses exceed $1,500 please tell us how you will fund the rest of your proposed activities. (up to 200 words)
Your application materials will be reviewed by agency staff members according to the following criteria. Please note: need is not a criterion. Application merit is based upon strength of responses in relation to the following review criteria:
Quality of Proposed Opportunity
Application clearly outlines the specific details of the opportunity and outlines how the opportunity is unique, relevant, and specifically important in relation to applicant’s current artistic trajectory.
Is the opportunity clear and consistent throughout? Is there an understanding of the past work in relation to the current opportunity and intended future goals?
Potential Impact to the Artist
Application clearly describes the potential impact to the artist’s work, including what next steps would be possible and its ties to their future artistic goals and clearly describes the potential of the opportunity to address at least one of the three eligible opportunity categories.
Is it clear what next steps are possible after the opportunity? Is there a clear set of activities that will allow the applicant to develop & advance their artistic trajectory? Is the potential to introduce work to new audiences, develop new artistic skills, or support the development of the entrepreneurship connected to the proposed activities?
Application demonstrates substantial evidence that the proposal will be realized within the funding period and includes a reasonable expenses list for the scope and scale of the proposed activities. The experiences described in the application are relevant to the opportunity proposed.
Do the materials demonstrate that the opportunity will be completed by June 30th? Is the expense list clearly connected to the opportunity described and logical to what is proposed? Does the experience list demonstrate ability to complete the opportunity and connect to trajectory shared in narrative?
Application demonstrates a commitment to high ethical standards and equitable professional practices regarding proposed actions, values, methods, and goals.
Is there connection or relationship with proposed communities, collaborators, or mentors, and is there intent to compensate these parties for their contributions? Are potential barriers to access being discussed openly and intentionally within the application?
To assist in their evaluation, reviewers will use a rubric. This evaluation tool can be found here. Applicants may find it helpful to refer to the rubric as they prepare their applications.
June 22, 2023, 11:59 pm
Grant Review Panel
August 21, 2023
July 1, 2023 – June 30, 2024
October 23, 2023 11:59 pm
Grant Review Panel
December 15, 2023
January 1, 2024 – June 30, 2024
Funds are delivered approximately 6-8 weeks after all necessary paperwork has been submitted by the grantee. This includes the award agreement, state W-9 and payment form.
This program does not fund the following:
- Support for opportunities, activities, or projects which would otherwise be eligible for another Arts Commission grant, such as the Research & Development Grant or Festival Grant;
- Teaching artist residencies;
- Opportunities that take place outside of the funding period;
- Ongoing studio or space rental;
- Equipment not related to the opportunity;
- Costs related to activities for which the applicant is employed or contracted;
- Opportunities related to academic research or formal study toward an academic or professional degree, such as capstone projects;
- Fundraising projects, food and beverages for any purpose;
- Grant administration, overhead, or processing fees taken by an umbrella/parent organization.
- Costs for nonrefundable travel expenses which are cancelled or postponed beyond the funding period end date.
- Organizations or individuals debarred or suspended from receiving Federal funds (2 CFR 180 Subpart C).
Due to the continuously evolving nature of the COVID-19 pandemic, please be aware that if travel plans are cancelled or postponed for beyond June 30, 2022, grantees will need to adjust their project budget accordingly to redirect awarded funds to other eligible expenses and/or return a portion of the grant funds.
Additionally, according to the Arts Commission’s enabling statutes, “Notwithstanding any other law, no monies from the Arizona Commission on the Arts may be spent for payment to any person or entity for use in desecrating, casting contempt on, mutilating, defacing, defiling, burning, trampling or otherwise dishonoring or causing to bring dishonor on religious objects, the flag of the United States or the flag of this state.” Recipients of Arts Commission support are further instructed to “take into consideration general standards of decency and respect for the diverse beliefs and values of the American public” within funded programs.