New England Foundation for the Arts (NEFA) is accepting applications for the Public Art for Spatial Justice to support public art that creatively expresses and embodies a more just version of what’s possible in public.
Public Art for Spatial Justice grants supports Massachusetts artists and artistic collaborations to create public art in Massachusetts that fosters public imagination and contributes to more just futures for the public spaces and public culture.
Public Art for Spatial Justice grants ranges from $5,000-$10,000.
Funding Criteria & Priorities
Public Art for Spatial Justice aims to fund a range of projects across Massachusetts that foster public imagination and contribute to more just futures for their public spaces and public culture.
Eligible projects will be reviewed according to the following funding criteria:
Artists/Artistic Collaborations share in NEFA’s values and commitment to the work of dismantling the legacies of racism, anti-Blackness, and white supremacy culture. Priority will be given to projects that:
Are led or co-led by artists who identify as Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC). The path to dismantling the legacies of racism and white supremacy culture includes centering BIPOC (Black Indigenous People of Color)-led creative exploration and expression in public spaces.
Disrupt harmful historic narratives that uphold structural inequities, decolonize and/or indigenize spaces, and/or centers BIPOC creativity, imagination, and expression in public spaces
Relevance: Projects creatively engage important public conversation(s) that are or need to be happening in this particular moment, in this particular place. Context is important in public artmaking. Public spaces are not neutral. And public art made in public spaces is not neutral.
Integrity: Projects honor the integrity of the people, places, stories, and ideas – past, present, and future- engaged in the artmaking. Public art practices that reduce people, places, and stories to tools for artmaking are harmful. Also, artists are collaborators and co-conspirators on this journey towards justice, not saviors.
*They recognize that feasibility may vary depending on how public health guidelines evolve during the pandemic. They ask that artists are realistic about feasibility while acknowledging that this may change as public health guidelines change.
The lead Applicant must be a Massachusetts-based artist or artistic collaboration
The lead applicant may be an individual(s), fiscally sponsored collective, and/or 501c3 organization;
Individual artist applicants and payees must be 18+ years old;
Artistic collaborations applying may consist of 2-3 individual artists working together, or more formal collectives/collaborations that have fiscal sponsorship or 501c3 status;
Recognizing the intersectionality of artists’ identities, they acknowledge that artists may also identify as cultural practitioners, activists, and community-rooted collaborators, and maybe self/community-taught, institutionally trained, or a combination of both. All are welcome to apply.
Note: Public Art for Spatial Justice Grants are taxable income to individual recipients and reportable to the IRS. Grantees will receive 1099 from NEFA if total payments exceed the minimum requirements set by the IRS within a calendar year.
Proposed public art project must:
Be located in the state of Massachusetts;
Engage the public realm and be available to the general public;
Projects may include public-facing elements that are engaging both physical and/or virtual spaces;
Ideally, projects will engage physical places/spaces, but they recognize public health standards continue to evolve during this pandemic. They will work with grantees to determine safe protocols to meet current public health standards;
Creatively cultivate expressions of and/or embodiment of spatial justice through public artmaking. Projects of all artistic disciplines – visual, performative, rooted in ritual, etc.- are eligible.
A complete grantee report is due 40 days after the project is completed. Grantees who do not submit a complete grantee report on time will not be eligible for Collective Imagination for Spatial Justice or Public Art for Spatial Justice grants.
Public Art for Spatial Justice applications will be accepted from late July through October 19, 2020. Submitted applications will be reviewed on a monthly basis, after each of the grant deadlines.
Grantees will have 12 months from the beginning of the grant year to implement projects.
Reminder: Public Art for Spatial Justice grants are taxable income to individual recipients and reportable to the IRS. Grantees will receive 1099 from NEFA if total payments exceed the minimum requirements set by the IRS within a calendar year. (Currently, the minimum requirement is $600.)
For more information, visit https://www.nefa.org/CreateSpatialJustice