The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) announced today the first round of recommended awards for fiscal year 2021 of more than $27.5 million with $145,000 divided among seven Providence-based arts organizations, according to the Rhode Island State Council for the Arts (RISCA).

The following lists the Providence arts organizations receiving grants:

  • Alliance of Artists Communities, $25,000.
  • Dirt Palace, $10,000.
  • DownCity Design, $30,000.
  • New Urban Arts, $10,000.
  • Providence Children’s Museum, $20,000.
  • Rhode Island School of Design, $35,000.
  • Trinity Repertory Company $15,000.

The NEA supported projects span 14 artistic disciplines in communities throughout the United States. Also, included in this announcement are the recipients of NEA Literature Fellowships in creative writing and translation and support for arts research projects.

“The arts remain critical to our economy and culture. I am pleased to help deliver federal funding for local arts organizations and artists to navigate the challenges of COVID-19 and associated closures,” said U.SSenator Jack Reed.

“Rhode Island’s exceptional artists and performers continue to face significant challenges as the pandemic has forced venues, galleries, and museums to remain closed. These federal funds will help keep arts organizations afloat until restrictions can be safely lifted and we can get back to enjoying the arts in person. And we’re working hard to provide more relief through the bill whose path to passage we cleared in the wee hours of Friday morning,” said U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse.

“When Rhode Island’s wonderful arts and culture institutions thrive, our local artists and communities thrive,” said Congressman Langevin. “The COVID crisis has heightened challenges for many local organizations, and we continue our work to ensure they weather the storm and can keep offering invaluable community programming and resources. I’m deeply appreciative of RISCA’s commitment to our local artists and congratulate the grantees, who I know will add to the vibrancy of the Creative Capital.”

“Rhode Island’s arts community is second to none. Every day, artists create, inspire and entertain us, while also generating millions of dollars in economic activity that support jobs across the Ocean State,” said U.S. Representative David Cicilline. “I’m pleased that this new federal funding will provide critical resources to some of Rhode Island’s leading arts organizations so that they can continue their important work.”

Randall Rosenbaum, Executive Director, Rhode Island State Council on the Arts (RISCA), expressed gratitude for the federal support Rhode Island arts organizations receive from the National Endowment for the Arts. “These federal dollars provide greater access to the arts for all Rhode Islanders,” Rosenbaum said. “This investment contributes to the cultural vitality and economy of our state, and we thank our amazing Congressional delegation and friends at the Arts Endowment for their help.”

“The creativity and resilience of artists and arts organizations across the country have inspired Americans during this challenging year,” said Arts Endowment Acting Chairman Ann Eilers. “These projects represent the vitality and perseverance of arts organizations small and large to overcome significant challenges, transform to new ways of engagement, and forge new relationships that benefit the diverse populations in neighborhoods and cities throughout the United States.”

  • Click here to view a state-by-state listing of all the grants announced in this release.
  • Click here to view a listing of awards by discipline/grant category
  • Click here  for a list of the panelists who reviewed the applications for funding

The Grants for Arts Projects (GAP) awards range from $10,000 to $100,000 and cover these artistic disciplines: Artist Communities, Arts Education, Dance, Design, Folk & Traditional Arts, Literary Arts, Local Arts Agencies, Media Arts, Museums, Music, Musical Theater, Opera, Presenting & Multidisciplinary Works, Theater, and Visual Arts. In February 2020, the agency received 1,674 eligible GAP applications requesting more than $82.4 million in FY 2021 support. Approved for funding are 1,073 projects totaling nearly $25 million, with grants recommended to 64% of all applicants and an average grant amount of $23,190. Grant guidelines and upcoming application deadlines are now available on the Arts Endowment website for organizations wishing to apply.

The Arts Endowment is committed to diversity, equity, inclusion, and fostering mutual respect for the diverse beliefs and values of all individuals and groups. Part of this commitment includes our partnership with the White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs).

Many supported projects are currently working in a virtual space. This is also true for the panel process. Once applications are submitted to the agency for consideration and staff have reviewed them for eligibility and completeness, a panel of dedicated experts with knowledge and experience in their field review and score each application in accordance with the published review criteria. Recommendations are then made to the National Council on the Arts. The council makes recommendations to the Chairman, who makes the final decision on all grant awards. The Arts Endowment assembles diverse panels every year with regard to geography, race and ethnicity, and artistic points of view. To learn more about the process  or to volunteer as a panelist.  

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