OVERVIEW: Kresge's funding prioritizes community redevelopment through the arts and seeks to ensure that arts become a key part of disenfranchised communities. It especially supports efforts that increase opportunities and access for low income folks during revitalization.
IP TAKE: Kresge's arts grants generally support organizations, not individuals, and they only support organizations doing community development work through some aspect of the arts. These organizations must be highly engaged, with a proven plan of attack, so grant seekers should expect serious competition when applying for Kresge funding.
PROFILE: Created in 1924 by Sebastian S. Kresge, the Kresge Foundation seeks “to promote human progress.” The foundation does not have a grantmaking program dedicated specifically to dance, but it supports dance organizations through its Arts & Culture program. As in most sizable foundations, Kresge's Arts and Culture program encompasses all forms of art, including art education. The foundation's Detroit program also supports arts organizations in Detroit through its Robust Arts and Culture Ecosystem initiative. One offshoot of this initiative is the Kresge Arts in Detroit program, which does support individual artists.
The central tenet of the Arts & Culture program is the idea of "creative placemaking," a "comprehensive community development approach that intentionally embeds arts, culture, and community-engaged design into strategies to stabilize communities." The foundation's three focus areas in arts funding are National Networks (for national organizations committed to creative placemaking within their own programs), Place-Based Initiatives (for organizations promoting creative placemaking in underserved communities), and Local Systems (projects that integrate arts and culture into municipal systems). Large programs typically receive the larger funding, but grants support organizations of all sizes. Click here to access the grants database and see a complete list.
The Robust Arts and Culture Ecosystem initiative provides unrestricted operating support to arts organizations of all sizes in Wayne, Oakland, and Macomb counties in southeastern Michigan.
Kresge accepts open applications throughout the year for grants in Place-Based Initiatives and Local Systems; grants in National Networks and Robust Arts and Culture Ecosystem are by invitation only. Click here to apply.
Kresge Arts in Detroit, a program administered through the College for Creative Studies, provides awards of $25,000 in a number of artistic fields, including dance and performing arts. These awards "recognize creative vision and commitment to excellence within a wide range of artistic disciplines" and "are selected through an open, competitive process as judged by an independent fellowship panel." Applicants must be residents of Wayne, Oakland, or Macomb counties in Michigan. Further information about the application process is available here.
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