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Media and Performing Artists and Nonprofit Organizations in Northern and Central California Invited to Apply for Collaborative Project Grants

Deadline: December 2, 2011 (Letters of Inquiry)

The Creative Work Fund, a program of the Walter and Elise Haas Fund supported by grants from the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation and the James Irvine Foundation, invites artists and nonprofit organizations to apply for grants for collaborative projects featuring media or performing artists.

Launched in 1994, the Creative Work Fund is designed to help address the decline in support for artists and new works. Since its inception, CWF has contributed $8 million to advance art-making by California artists in a variety of disciplines. Grants are awarded to genuine, creative partnerships between artists and nonprofit organizations. Each year, CWF focuses on projects from different disciplines; the 2012 grants program will fund collaborative projects that feature media or performing artists.

The CWF grant program emphasizes the creation of new work — not distribution or productions of work already developed. Projects may culminate in any form, but they must feature a lead artist with a strong track record as a media artist or performing artist and collaboration between that artist and a nonprofit organization.

The fund uses the following definitions for eligible artists. Media artists create narrative, documentary, animated, or experimental time-based works using audio, digital, film, and/or video media.

Computer arts also are included in this category. (Please note that the fund considers still photography in its visual arts category.) Performing artists create or execute work in dance, opera, performance art, theater, and vocal and instrumental music. (Please note that the fund considers spoken word artists in its literary arts category.)

Any kind of 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization may apply (but not a private foundation). A recognized religious organization, even if it does not have 501(c)(3) status, may apply, as may a public agency (such as a parks department, health department, or public school). A nonprofit organization that clearly fills a charitable or educational purpose but does not have nonprofit status may apply with an eligible nonprofit fiscal sponsor.

The principal collaborating artists and organizations must live or be located in the Northern or Central California counties of Alameda, Contra Costa, Marin, Monterey, Napa, San Benito, San Francisco, San Joaquin, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Solano, Sonoma, or Stanislaus; and have been there for at least two years.

A total of up to $810,000 will be available through grants ranging from $10,000 to $40,000. Artists and organizations should plan projects and prepare and sign their Letters of Inquiry together.

To assist individuals and organizations interested in applying, CWF will co-host a series of seminars and Webinars from September through November 2011. While these are not mandatory, they are highly recommended, especially if an applicant is not familiar with the fund.

Visit the CWF Web site for complete program guidelines, application materials, and examples of funded projects, as well as the seminar and Webinar schedules and sign-up forms.

Link to Complete RFP

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