A Blade of Grass: Grants for Visual Arts

OVERVIEW: A Blade of Grass seeks social change through the arts. It supports of out-of-the-box artistic thinkers and implementers through fellowship programs.

IP TAKE: A Blade of Grass offers a fellowship program to support artists who are not only socially conscious, but socially active. Visual artists looking for a fellowship should pursue art that is similarly conscious and active. The visual artists it supports are typically multi-disciplinary in their work.

PROFILE: A Blade of Grass seeks to “provide resources to artists who demonstrate artistic excellence and serve as innovative conduits for social change.” The organization provides visual arts funding through its Fellowship for Socially Engaged Art, which supports individual artists and artist collectives with one-year funding of $20,000, as well as capacity-building tools, such as strategic support, assessment tools, and video documentation of the artists’ work.

Grantseekers should look over A Blade of Grass’ past fellowship recipients page to better understand the organizations’ expectations for social engagement. Perusing past recipients will also give a strong sense of how this funder views and pursues its visual arts support: immersive, multi-disciplinary, collaborative, often simultaneously making use of other artistic forms. Unlike many artistic fellowship opportunities, this one is an open application. The deadline is typically in the fall.

Past Fellowship for Socially Engaged Art recipients who express their work through visual arts include: Sol Aramendi, whose project "Apps for Power" links the struggle for immigrant workers’ rights to the concept of community accountability; Brett Cook, whose project "Reflections of Healing" promoted health equity through participatory public art installations and wellness clinics; Mary Mattingly, whose project "Swale," a mobile food forest, was grown on a 50-foot diameter floating platform that docked at different piers around New York City’s harbor for months at a time.

Unlike many artist fellowship opportunities, this one is an open application. The deadline is in November.


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