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Community Arts Program

Diversity Statement                                                    

The Rhode Island State Council on the Arts (RISCA) embraces diversity as a proactive approach essential to our role as a state agency and as a promoter and supporter of the arts in Rhode Island.  In building and serving diverse audiences, RISCA affirms and supports the diversity of persons and ideas both within the organization and throughout the state.

RISCA will continue to make every effort, in collaboration with the Governor’s Office, toward building an increasingly more diverse Council that is reflective of the communities we serve.  We commit to engaging and understanding the challenges that our constituents face as they strive for greater inclusion and diversity in their projects and programs.

RISCA values and promotes diversity in the arts and seeks to build on its collaboration with organizations and community groups in developing, supporting and providing programs that both celebrate and serve diverse populations, groups, cultures and geographic areas into the state.

Community Arts
Beyond Folk and Traditional artists, Rhode Island is host to an incredible variety of community artists. Coming from places as diverse as the folk artists whom we celebrate, these artists practice art forms that diverge from tradition practice. Rather than stemming from a long-standing tradition of apprenticeship, the work of these artists is the product of a more recent ingenuity. Sometimes without access to formal training, community artists have nonetheless proven themselves masters of their art. And while the roots of their practice might not be clearly traceable, these artists produce work that is vital to the artistic life of their communities and their neighborhoods.
RISCA is committed to ensuring that these artists, who come from an incredible range of places and traditions, may also have the opportunity to share practice with the Rhode Island community.

Sustainable Community
Connections initiative (SCCI)

Creative Impact Series

Latino Community Celebration

Expansion Arts

Asian Community Celebration



Folk and Traditional Arts
Apprenticeships & Fellowships Grants
The Folk Arts are defined as these artistic practices
that are community or family base and express a
community’s aesthetic heritage and tradition. The learning
process is informal and is passed on from generation to
generation by word of mouth, by apprenticeships, & imitation. 

Folk Arts Fellowships provide one $1000 and one $5000 award annually to artists in a variety of disciplines who demonstrate the highest level of skill and accomplishment in their craft. 
Folk Art Fellowship Application PDF

Folk Arts Apprenticeships are designed to foster the sharing of traditional (folk) artistic skills between a master and an apprentice who is already familiar with the genre.  The program creates this opportunity specifically for individuals who share common cultural heritage. 
Folk Art Apprenticeship Application PDF

2012 Deadline for both grants is on April 1st

Folk and Traditional Arts
Apprenticeships and Fellowships Grants

Art and Traditions of the World interviews


The Atrium Gallery
was developed to exhibit the work of Rhode Island artists in the State Capitol Complex. It hosts exhibits on a rotating basis, in partnership with community artists and art organizations from across the state. 
The Atrium also showcases artwork from a variety of diverse groups from Africa, Asia, Latin America & the Native American community among others.


Diversity Exhibits

Atrium Traveling Exhibit

New Visions /New Curator Series

International Artist & Cultural Exchange Program 

For more information please contact
Elena Calderón-Patiño, Community Arts Program Director
Email: Elena.Patino@arts.ri.gov
Phone: (401) 222-6996