ArtsMemphis Receives $200,000 in Local CARES Act Funding


MEMPHIS, September 10, 2020ArtsMemphis is honored to receive $200,000 in CARES Act funding through the City of Memphis to be redirected to artists and arts and culture sector workers who reside in Memphis. Emergency Relief Funds of up to $1,000 will support recovery from income losses due to canceled events, work shortages, or job layoff or furlough from nonprofit arts and culture organizations.

This is the second phase of distributions from the Artist Emergency Fund since the onset of the pandemic. The Artist Emergency Fund was launched in April 2020 by ArtsMemphis and Music Export Memphis. Distributions in Phase 1 totaled $307,000 and impacted 443 individuals whose primary income is reliant on the arts.

Initial distributions paired with the CARES Act funds will bring the total amount distributed within the local artist community to more than $500,000.

“We are grateful to the City of Memphis for partnering with ArtsMemphis because of our reach within the artist community and our expertise in facilitating financial support of this nature.” said Elizabeth Rouse, President & CEO of ArtsMemphis. “These funds make a critical difference in the artist community, as many lost all of their income due to the shutdown of the arts sector.”

“We're thrilled about the City's generous support and what it means for our ability to provide critically needed relief to our musicians who are indefinitely out of work and on whose backs we have built our city's economy for decades.” said Elizabeth Cawein, Founder and Executive Director of Music Export Memphis.  

Applications open September 14 and are available at  Self-employed artists of all artistic disciplines as well as individuals employed or contracted by nonprofit arts and culture organizations are eligible to apply. Applicants must reside in the City of Memphis. Applications received from musicians will be reviewed in partnership with Music Export Memphis. This opportunity is available to previous Artist Emergency Fund grant recipients residing in the City of Memphis; a new application is required.


About ArtsMemphis:

The mission of ArtsMemphis is to sustain Memphis’ world-renowned cultural vitality and strengthen local communities through the arts. ArtsMemphis distributes $2.8 million annually to 70+ local organizations and 137 artists, who collectively provide over 2.4 million annual art experiences. Learn more at

About Music Export Memphis:

Music Export Memphis creates opportunities for Memphis musicians to showcase their music outside the city, driving tourism, talent attraction and economic development, and giving artists a needed engine and platform to grow their careers and elevate Memphis’ profile as a contemporary music city. In 2019, MEM paid out more than $50,000 to Memphis artists through its programs and created opportunities across the country benefiting more than 135 individual Memphis musicians. Learn more at


Photo by: Carpenter Art Garden

Posted by Colleen McCartney at 11:00 AM
Share |

One Gift Helps 80 Arts Groups and Artists

Donate Today