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Sign in to our online grant application system:

  • Click here if you are applying as an individual artist applying for a fellowship or project grant
  • Click here if you are applying as an arts organization or school applying for a project grant


Funds to the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts are provided by the Rhode Island State General Assembly and the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency, on behalf of the citizens of Rhode Island. These funds in turn allow RISCA to make hundreds of grants annually to our state's non-profit organizations, schools, individuals artists, and more. Read on for more information on all of RISCA's grant programs.

Grants for Organizations

Arts Access Grants

RISCA's Arts Access Grants (AAG) provide small grants (maximum of $3,000) to new ventures, occasional arts programs, or arts and cultural organizations that do not meet the new IAC eligibility requirements (see below). The Arts Access Grant provides program support to organizations across Rhode Island that contribute to the vitality of our communities, the economy of our state, the education of all Rhode Islanders, and our quality of life. Organizations must demonstrate excellent artistic, educational, and cultural value, as well as engagement with their community. As a rule, programs should be geared to a broad and diverse audience.

Investments in Arts and Culture

Investments in Arts and Culture (IAC) operating support grants are designed to support those organizations that produce or present annual programs in the arts and have developed a funding relationship with RISCA over time. The IAC category looks at what you have done over the past year, not what you propose to do in the year to come.Organizations that receive grants in IAC will not be eligible to apply for support in the AAG category, or in our regular Project Grants for Individuals or Education categories.

More detail on these grantmaking programs can be found by visiting our RISCA Organizations page, or by contacting Mollie Flanagan, Director of Grants to Organizations, at Mollie.Flanagan@arts.ri.gov.

State Cultural Facilities Grants

The State Cultural Facilities Grant Program is a matching grant program. It promotes careful planning for capital improvement, preservation and renovation projects for public and nonprofit artistic, performance centers, historic sites, museums and cultural art centers located around the state. Through its matching requirements, the program stimulates broader support and participation in cultural facility projects statewide. Applications for the 2016 grant round (approximately $2 million) will be due on October 1, 2016. Applicants will be notified of grant decisions by December 31, 2016. We anticipate one additional round in 2017 ($2.0 million). For more information, please contact Randall Rosenbaum, Executive Director, at Randall.Rosenbaum@arts.ri.gov

Artists Open Studios Tour (AOST) Grants

Through RISCA's AOST Grant Program, municipalities may apply for $500 grants to support and promote local Artist Open Studios programs. Potential applicants are highly encouraged to speak with RISCA staff before submitting an application. Please contact Elena Calderón Patino, Director of the Community Arts Program Director, at 401-222-6996 or Elena.Patino@arts.ri.gov to discuss your application.

Grants for Education

Project Grants for Education

Learning in and through the arts plays a critical role in the growth and development of our youngest citizens. Project Grants for Education (PGE) provide support to artists and cultural organizations collaborating with schools and other educational entities, in order to:

  • Increase access to high quality curriculum-based arts learning for all RI children and youth
  • Foster the professional development of artists and educators
  • Engage the participation of families and other community members in arts learning for children and youth
  • Help to ensure that all RI youth are able to demonstrate proficiency in one or more art forms at or before graduation from high school

Big Yellow School Bus Grants

Funded in part by Bank of America, RISCA's Big Yellow School Bus grant program provides up to $400 to Rhode Island schools and pre-schools to underwrite the cost of field trips to attend arts events such as live music, dance or theatre performances, exhibits at art museums, etc., as well as the cost of coverage for classroom teachers involved in the field trip. There must be an arts component to the trip. Applications to this program are accepted on a rolling basis; there is no deadline.

More detail on these grantmaking programs can be found by visiting our RISCA Education page, or by contacting Daniel Kahn, Arts in Education Program Assistant, at daniel.kahn@arts.ri.gov.

Grants for Individuals

Fellowship Grants

Fellowships encourage the creative development of artists by enabling them to set aside time to pursue their work and achieve specific creative and career goals. Fellowships are highly competitive awards. Artists are encouraged to apply when they have created a substantial body of work that they are prepared to present in a professional manner. More detail on this grantmaking category can be found on our RISCA Artists page.

Project Grants for Individuals

Project Grants for Individuals (PGI) are available to artists who are Rhode Island residents and do not require a non-profit 501(c)3 umbrella. Through Project Grants for Individuals, RISCA supports highly creative and talented artists who seek to produce, perform, teach or share their work with the public.  Project grants to individuals might include the coordination of community arts events, public performances, arts workshops, creative collaborations, and exhibitions and installations with a strong public component.

More detail on these grantmaking programs can be found on our RISCA Artists page. Artists interested in applying for a Project Grant for Individuals MUST contact Mollie Flanagan, Director of Individual Artists Programs, at mollie.flanagan@arts.ri.gov ahead of submitting an application. Fellowship applicants are also encouraged, but not required, to contact Mollie ahead of submitting an application.

Grants in Folk and Traditional Arts

The folk arts are defined as those artistic practices which are community- or family-based and express that community's aesthetic heritage and tradition. The learning process is informal and is passed on from generation to generation by word of mouth, apprenticeship, and imitation.

Folk Arts Apprenticeships

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 a common cultural heritage.

Folk Arts Fellowships

Folk Arts Fellowships provide one $1,000 and one $5,000 award annually to artists in a variety of disciplines who demonstrate the highest level of skill and accomplishment in their craft. Artists are encouraged to apply when they have created a substantial body of work that they are prepared to present in a professional manner.

Artists interested in applying for a Fellowship or Apprenticeship MUST contact Elena Calderón Patiño, Community Arts Program Director, at elena.patino@arts.ri.gov.