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Grants to California Nonprofits in Eligible Counties for Arts Fellowships that Promote Career Development


Geographic Focus

USA: California

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Administering Organization - Individual Artist Fellowships

California Arts Council (CAC)

Agency: State

GrantWatch ID #193878

Grant Description

Grants to California nonprofit organizations in eligible counties for arts fellowships that promote career development. Fellowship programs will support artists from a wide range of disciplines. Eligible costs include program design, implementation, publication, production, and administration. Applicants must be based in Region 4, which includes 58 counties in Northern California.

The California Arts Council’s policies and practices prioritize racial equity and have a broad geographic reach into communities of all sizes and needs, and this includes providing critical services to artists and to the community at large. The CAC is committed to funding opportunities that support all of California’s creative ecosystem. Offering fellowship support to artists responds to the CAC’s Strategic Framework by directly supporting individuals who embody aesthetics, a key value of the CAC, recognizing all art forms and artistic traditions that enable full and meaningful creative expression.

Through a network of regionally-based Administering Organizations (AOs), the Individual Artists Fellowship (IAF) program will continue to recognize, uplift, and celebrate the excellence of California artists practicing any art form. In doing so, the CAC will showcase the centrality of artists’ leadership in guiding the evolution of traditional and contemporary cultures.

Excellence, for purposes of this grant, is defined as an artist’s:

  • Unique artistic vision
  • Ongoing commitment to creative practice
  • Engagement with and impact on the larger cultural ecosystem

This program will support artists at key moments in their careers, elevating their capacity for continued contribution to the field and the state. Fellowship grants support individual artistic practice through unrestricted funding. This program is intended to support a broad spectrum of artists working in all disciplines, from diverse geographies and communities of all sizes across the state of California.

Funding Structure:

Administering Organizations will regrant fellowship awards to provide unrestricted funding in support of the fellows’ artistic practice. The following three tiers of funding are available:

  • CAC Emerging Artist Fellows - $5,000 - Emerging artists are those in the beginning stages of making their work public and engaging the larger community in their practice. Individuals at this career stage may have had a few public showings of their work, but do not yet have ongoing resources or support.
  • CAC Established Artist Fellows - $10,000 - Artists in the Established tier regularly make their work public and engage the larger community in their practice. Individuals in this tier can give multiple examples of artistic and/or cultural works that have made significant social impact.
  • CAC Legacy Artist Fellows - $50,000 - Artists in the Legacy tier can point to a significant body of work, produced over a substantial period of time, that has engaged their communities and that has made a significant social impact. Artists in this tier may be able to point to Emerging and Established Artists that they have mentored or otherwise positively influenced.

For further guidelines for artists and administering organizations, see:

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  • Others (see text field entitled "Additional Eligibility Criteria" for clarification)

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Applicants must comply with the requirements below. All applications must include the listed items at the time of submission in order to be reviewed, ranked, and considered for funding.

- California-based - Documentation as being a California-based nonprofit arts/cultural organization; an arts-based unit of municipal or county government; or a tribal government, or nonprofit social service organization with a principal place of business in California.
- Arts programming - Applicants must have a minimum two-year history of consistent engagement in arts programming and/or services prior to the application deadline.
- 501(c)(3) organization as applicant - Non-governmental applicant organizations must demonstrate proof of nonprofit status under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, or section 23701d of the California Revenue and Taxation Code.
- Local government - An arts-based unit of municipal or county government; or a tribal government.

For further information, see:

Additional Geographic Information:

Regional Map:

Pre-proposal Conference:

Virtual office sessions are available to provide technical assistance for Administering Organization – Individual Artists Fellowship applicants. Arts Program Specialists Josy Miller and Gabrielle Rosado will discuss your organization-specific grant application questions, with participants admitted via a Zoom waiting room. Hours are offered as follows:

Monday, December 19, 12 p.m.-1 p.m.
- To join the meeting:

Thursday, January 5, 12 p.m.-1 p.m.
- To join the meeting:

Wednesday, January 18, 12 p.m.-1 p.m.
- To join the meeting:

Pre-Application Information:

Program Timeline
- AO Application Opens: December 15, 2022
- AO Application Deadline: January 26, 2023
- Panel Review: January – February 2023
- Funding Decision: Approx. late February 2023
- Funding Notification: March 2023
- Grant Activity Period: April 1, 2023 – December 31, 2024
- Fellowship Period: September 1, 2023 – August 30, 2024
- Interim Report Deadline: March 31, 2024
- Final Report Deadline: January 31, 2025
- Estimated Arrival of Funds: Approx. July 1, 2023-September 1, 2023

Applications will be available online through the CAC’s online grants management system. Only applications submitted through the system by the deadline will be accepted. It is recommended that new applicants create an online profile well in advance of the application deadline.

Archived Webinar Video:



Additional Funding Information:

Estimated Total Program Funding:


Term of Contract:

Grant Activity Period: April 1, 2023 – December 31, 2024.

Contact Information:

Apply Online:

For assistance from CAC staff:
Josy Miller, Ph.D.
Arts Program Specialist
California Arts Council

2750 Gateway Oaks Drive, Suite 300
Sacramento, CA 95833
(916) 322-6555
Toll Free (800) 201-6201
FAX: (916) 322-6575

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