Through the State Partnership Grant, the National Endowment for the Arts provides state arts agencies with support for stable, professionally-directed programs that are responsive to a state’s diverse folk and traditional arts heritage. Since 2014, the Arizona Commission on the Arts has partnered with the Southwest Folklife Alliance (SFA) to serve as the state’s official folk arts partner.

SFA is the first dedicated folklife organization along the US-Mexico border corridor focused solely on uplifting, supporting, and presenting the work of traditional artists year-round. Their mission is to build more equitable and vibrant communities by celebrating the everyday expressions of culture, heritage and diversity in the Greater Southwest.

Recent News

SFA Awards 2022 Master-Apprentice Awards

“Many of the artists we award are elders or late-career artists. This presents a heightened sense of urgency—we want to make sure we honor and support them in sharing their cultural knowledge to ensure these art forms continue.”

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Current Opportunity

Master-Apprentice Artist Award

Nominations Due: May 1, 2023


The Southwest Folklife Alliance (SFA) Master-Apprentice Artist Award provides direct support for master traditional artists living in Arizona to pass on art, culture, and heritage practices to apprentice learners.

The goal of this award is to strengthen the transmission of community-based traditions throughout the Southwestern United States. The Master-Apprentice Artist supports a master artist or tradition bearer to work with a qualified apprentice (or group of apprentices) to engage in a teaching-learning relationship that includes one-on-one mentorship and hands-on experience. Our highest priority is to support apprentices to learn from master artists within their own cultural traditions. Funds can be used to help cover artist fees, offset costs of raw materials, and support any travel essential to the exchange. Traditional artists & culture bearers receive a $5,000; apprentices receive $500.

Visit the SFA website for more information.

Banner photos: (left to right) Adrian Perez; Barbara Teller Ornelas; Carlos Valenzuela; Keith Johnson; Joanne Hunter. Photos by Stephen Meckler, courtesy of Southwest Folklife Alliance.

Southwest Folklife Alliance is an affiliate non-profit organization of the University of Arizona, College of Social and Behavioral Sciences


Each year, our friends at Arizona Citizens for the Arts honor artists, arts organizations, arts educators, and arts supporters from across the state! The Arizona Creative Excellence Awards are the new Governor's Arts Awards! Be sure to follow Arizona Citizens for the Arts for news about this year's nominees and to learn how you can be part of their statewide effort to support a strong and vibrant arts & culture sector in Arizona!🌟 You won't want to miss out on this year's Awards program! 🌟🎟️ Limited Seats Available – Purchase Your Tickets Today! 🎟️Secure Your Spot Now: 👉 Discount: For an even bigger discount, email Sabrina at [email protected].Learn more about the event at #GetYourTickets #CelebrateArts #AZCA #AZ #AZartsandculture #AZculture #AZARTS #ArizonaArts #CreativeCommunity #ArizonaArts ... See MoreSee Less
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Congratualtions, Threaded Together, and thank you for all you do to serve your community through the arts!✨ Great news! Threaded Together was recently awarded a grant from Arizona Commission on the Arts, an agency of the State of Arizona. ✨ We were awarded the funds through the Arizona Commission on the Arts Creative Capacity Grants that focuses its grant support on nonprofits with missions to produce, present, teach, or serve the arts. ✨ Threaded Together is one of 22 Flagstaff nonprofits to receive grant funding. Our award was one of the 367 grants totaling $5.4 million awarded to nonprofit arts organizations, festivals, and arts learning programs. ✨ Thank you Arizona Commission on the Arts for the incredible work you do supporting arts nonprofits! #flagstaff #threadedtogether #arizona #nonprofit #grant #support #arts #teaching #textile #sewing #crochet #knitting #embroidery #sewingmachine #stitch ... See MoreSee Less
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