Category Archives: Grant Info

Mini-Grants for Public Artists to Create Messages of Hope

Forecast is offering mini-grants for public artists to create messages of hope during this challenging time. 

The application is now open for 20 grants of $500 each.
Forecast asked artists how they can best help them and their communities NOW. In response, they reallocated $10,000 of their own resources to quickly provide mini-grants to public artists to safely create and share messages of hope within their communities—a much-needed act of solidarity in the face of these stark economic and health crises.

Forecast seeks to support artists based in Minnesota and the Native nations that share the same geography. Their goal is to get funds to artists as quickly as possible and all applicants will be notified by this Friday, April 10. 

Apply by 9 pm this Wednesday, April 8! For more information and to apply visit here.

MN State Arts Board Folk and Traditional Arts Grant Deadline May 15

Minnesota State Arts Board FY 2021

Folk and Traditional Arts Grant Application

Deadline May 15, 2020


The FY 2021 Folk and Traditional Arts grant program is now open for application. The Folk and Traditional Arts program is designed to enrich Minnesota communities through folk and traditional art forms being passed on, documented, practiced and shared. Folk and traditional arts refer to artistic traditions that come from and are rooted in the cultural life of a community. Communities may share a common ethnicity, geographic or regional identity, occupation, language, or tribal affiliation. Folk and traditional arts are learned and passed on through community-based systems of observation and practice.


The deadline to submit applications is Friday, May 15, 2020. All applications must be submitted and accepted before 4:30 p.m. on the day of the deadline.


All applicants should first review the program overview and application instructions available on the Arts Board Web site. Additionally, first time applicants and those in need of support are encouraged to speak with program officer Rina Rossi. She can be reached at (651) 539-2661, toll-free at (800) 866-2787, or via e-mail at rina.rossi@arts.state.mn.us.


The Arts Board uses WebGrants, an online grants management system, for all applications. Registration is required of all applicants before beginning an application to any Arts Board program. It is only necessary to register once. To register, visit the Arts Board Web site. Scroll down the home page to WebGrants instructions and registration information.

The Arts Board will offer a free online information session about the FY 2021 Folk and Traditional Arts grant opportunity on Thursday, April 16, at 3:00 p.m. Learn more.

For accessibility inquiries and accommodations requests necessary to complete and submit an application, contact accessibility coordinator Natalie Kennedy at (651) 539-2666, toll-free at (800) 866-2787, or via e-mail at natalie.kennedy@arts.state.mn.us.

COVID-19 and the NWMAC + Resources for you

We are committed to the health and safety of our staff, the public, and the artists we serve. Thus, we have had to make changes to the way we do business.

Office Closing
The Northwest Minnesota Arts Council office is closed and our staff will work from home until further notice. If you need to come to our office you will need to make an appointment. We are also available by phone or email. Please give us a call at 218-745-9111 and leave a message or email director@nwartscouncil.org. Please stay tuned for any changes or updates!

Routine Grant Activity
We have received some inquiries about grants that had activities during this time. We know that some granted activity will need to be suspended, rescheduled, or canceled. As we field questions and requests from those planning changes to their granted projects and programs, our commitment is to find solutions that will result in the least amount of hardship for all involved. We will be drafting an amendment to those grant reports. Please know that we will do our best to accommodate during this time. Reach out with questions or concerns.

NW Annual Art Exhibit and Of the Year Awards Reception

At this time we have rescheduled our annual exhibit and reception to mid-July. Please stay tuned for dates and information as it becomes available.

Minnesota State Arts Board Survey

The Minnesota State Arts Board wants to know COVID-19’s impact on the creative community & support needed. A message from the Minnesota State Arts Board: “The Minnesota State Arts Board and Minnesota’s regional arts councils know that people and organizations in our state’s arts and creative sector are being tested and challenged as never before. The physical, emotional, and financial toll that COVID-19 is taking is beyond our ability to measure, at this point. To help us get a handle on what’s happening and guide our immediate and longer-term responses to COVID-19, we need your input.”

Please take FIVE MINUTES to complete a very brief and simple survey. Take the survey here. They will begin reviewing the information on March 25, so please complete the survey by then if possible. However, the situation is evolving every day, so the survey will be kept live and new responses will continue to be reviewed as they are received.

Resources and Sources

The following links provide resources that may be helpful for artists and arts organizations going forward:

Minnesota State Arts Board Guidance to the Arts Community: http://www.arts.state.mn.us/news/COVID-19.htm

Minnesota Citizens for the Arts Corona Virus Resource Center: http://artsmn.org/coronavirus/

Springboard for the Arts Corona Virus resource page for artists, creatives, and organizations: https://springboardforthearts.org/coronavirus/

Minnesota Employment and Economic Development; response for workers and employers: https://mn.gov/deed/newscenter/covid/

Forecast for the Arts: https://forecastpublicart.org/pro-bono-consulting-in-response-to-covid-19/

Forecast has launched pro bono consulting to support public artists and public art program administrators during this pandemic until May 31, 2020. They will provide up to one hour of consultation; where necessary, follow-up consultations may be available FREE of CHARGE. If you don’t need consulting support at this time but have experience, expertise, and time that you are willing to offer to help others, please contact Jen Krava at: consulting@forecastpublicart.org. For questions regarding this initiative: probono@forecastpublicart.org.

Minnesota Department of Health:
https://www.health.state.mn.us/diseases/coronavirus/situation.html

Center for Disease Control: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html?CDC_AA_refVal=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.cdc.gov%2Fcoronavirus%2Findex.html

Minnesota Council of Non-Profits (for information about unemployment): https://www.minnesotanonprofits.org/about-mcn/news-detail/2020/03/24/unemployment-insurance-information-and-updates.

The Small Business Owner’s Guide to the CARES Act

The programs and initiatives in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act that was just passed by Congress are intended to assist business owners with whatever needs they have right now. Download a document with more info:

Paycheck Protection Program FAQs for Small Businesses:

Good explainers online: “Dear Non-Profits, Small Businesses, Artists, Freelancers, Gig Workers, Self-Employers, Part-Timers, and Solo Shop Warriors Wondering What’s Next: This Money is For You. Please Take It.” https://medium.com/@amandalkool/dear-non-profits-small-businesses-freelancers-etc-this-money-is-for-you-please-take-it-b853196005ce

Individual Artist Grants Deadline March 15

START YOUR APPLICATION TODAY

NWMAC Individual Artist $1,500 GRANTS – DEADLINE March 15!

Individual artist grants are awarded to individuals in our region in performing, visual, media and creative writing arts. We are strongly encouraging people of color to apply!

To learn more about these grant programs and start an application visit www.NorthwestMinnesotaArtsCouncil.org, click on the Current Grants Forms under the Grants Tab. The grant application process is completely online and NWMAC’s Executive Director Mara Hanel 218-745-9111 can help walk you through the process of using the grants portal to get accustomed to it.

Create a login >>>

Contact Mara for support and to review your application.  Mara can also provide a copy of the application and guidelines for you to review prior to starting your on-line application. 

Submit by March 15, 2020 by 11:59 pm.

Artist Project Grants: Artists must be 18 years and older and reside in the seven-county Northwest Minnesota area at least six months out of the calendar year. Individual Artist Grants provide financial assistance for the exhibition, performance, or production of a specific creative work, mentoring with a more experienced artist, participation in not-for-credit arts experiences.

What is a typical project?  Often, grant proposals are to buy items that directly relate to your art like upgrading an instrument or replacing worn out visual art equipment.  Sometimes proposals are to attend a workshop that is important for your artistic growth then create a new body of work as a result of that learning.  Some grants are to allow artists to create a new body of work, then promote and showcase the result.

What is hard to get funded?  It is difficult to receive funding for items that are part of daily life like computers, printers, cameras, cell phones, etc.  It is also difficult to receive funding to travel to destinations for art training that have the appearance of a vacation.  It is difficult to receive funds to start a new arts medium since your current work sample is important to the application process and must show work within the medium you are applying.

Can I pay myself while I work on my project?  Yes, the McKnight Foundation, encourages established artists to be able to use grant funds to pay themselves to work on the project.  If awarded a grant however careful tracking needs to occur on the form provided.  If awarded all receipts for expenses need to accompany the final report or full or partial funding will be returned including the completed time tracking form.

Support for our Individual Artist Grants comes from the McKnight Foundation. The McKnight Foundation in Minneapolis awards the Northwest Minnesota Arts Council $70,000 annually to provide grants and services to artists. Please see the McKnight page on our website that provides a summary and links to this programming. To see if you quality for this grant visit the grants link at www.NorthwestMinnesotaArtsCouncil.org/grants or call 218-745-9111 or email mara@nwrdc.org.