ArtsMemphis, is pleased to offer six $5,000 ArtsAccelerator Grants in 2019 to visual artists living and working in Shelby County. The ArtsAccelerator Grants are incentive grants for visual artists who are at a critical juncture in their careers and are intended to deepen and expand artistic work to advance the grant recipient’s artistic accomplishments. The ArtsAccelerator Program supports artists working in any media, including painting, sculpture, drawing, photography, installation art, performance art, video art, or social practice (as defined below).
The ArtsAccelerator Program enables ArtsMemphis to demonstrate the value of visual artists’ work to our region by supporting working artists in their artistic practice. We believe this program contributes to the vitality of our artistic community and helps Memphis attract and retain a vibrant creative class.
ArtsMemphis values inclusion and equity. When evaluating applications, judges will be instructed to consider historically underserved populations. Minimally two of the six ArtsAccelerator Grants, will be awarded to artists of color (as defined below). Also, minimally one of the artists awarded a grant will be an emerging artist (as defined below).
Please note that this is a competitive process. Last year, 108 artists applied for the five ArtsAccelerator Grants, meaning that less than 5% of applicants received funding.
The 2019 guidelines are outlined below. Note that guidelines may be amended annually.
You aren’t required to attend a workshop in order to apply for an ArtsAccelerator Grant...BUT it is highly recommended. This is your opportunity to ask questions, learn from past grantees, and get helpful tips for your application. Each session is one hour. More workshops are being scheduled, please check back for updates.
Final funding decisions are made by a panel of judges living and working outside of Memphis & Shelby County. The panel of judges is identified by members of the ArtsMemphis’ Artist Advisory Council, which facilitates the ArtsAccelerator Program with ArtsMemphis staff.
Judges review and evaluate each eligible application using the following 100-point rating scale. Applicants should address these specific criteria when answering narrative questions in the grant application.
1. Need & Impact (Max.: 40 points)
2. Artistic merit, strength of the applicant’s work (Max.: 40 points)
3. Professionalism (Max.: 20 points)
Social practice: Art that is collaborative, often participatory and involves people as the medium or material of the work. Social Practice (or Socially Engaged) art focuses less on aesthetics and more on creating collaborations within communities to bring about heightened awareness of societal issues.
Artist of color: An artist who is not white or of European heritage.
Artistic merit: Extent to which the work deepens and extends the arts' value, including the ability to foster new connections and to exemplify creativity and innovation.
Clarity of proposal: Clarity means you understand what you’re thinking and your reader not only understands your writing, but understands that you understand the problem or issue you are addressing. Note that the formality is different from the clarity of the writing. Even when writing formally, let some personality come through. Don’t try to sound “professional” by using fancy words and jargon.
Emerging Artist: Artists who have created work in their discipline outside of an academic degree program for five years or less and are early in their artistic careers, regardless of age. Emerging artists have not yet received significant recognition, such as exhibitions, critical reviews, commissions, performances, other grant awards, residencies, fellowships, productions or productions; and do not have sustained income derived from art sales, commissions or other income related to art production.
A panel of three judges from outside Memphis/Shelby County will review and score all applications, using the rubric as their guide. Top scoring applicants will be reviewed and discussed by the judges to determine the grant award recipients.
Application Deadline: January 22, 2019
ArtsMemphis uses SlideRoom to receive grant applications and review portfolios for ArtsAccelerator.
You may submit questions about this grant in writing to Tracy Lauritzen Wright at [email protected].
We will begin to provide information in the FAQ document after November 1, 2018
Questions received by January 21, 2019 will be answered and included in the FAQ document.