Organized by the Community Foundation of Western Massachusetts' ValleyCreates Initiative and administered by MASS MoCA's Assets for Artists Program, the ValleyCreates Rapid Response Artist Working Capital Grant Program is a fast-tracked financial wellness and sustainability initiative for artists who currently live or have studio space in Franklin, Hampshire, and Hampton Counties, Massachusetts. This program pairs a $1,000 artist mini-grant with one-on-one coaching and online financial and business resiliency webinars specifically focused on navigating a post-COVID cultural sector.
In order to receive the $1,000 mini-grant, selected artists will be expected to:
Participate in a 1-on-1 business and financial coaching session on a topic of their choice with a team member of the Assets for Artists (A4A) program.
Participate in at least one ValleyCreates peer event in 2020 (most likely online meet-ups, with possible in-person cohorts activities later)
Complete a basic strategic plan that outlines the artist's business/career goals and action steps (don't worry, we'll guide you in getting that done easily).
In addition, selected artists will receive:
Priority sign-up for A4A's new, free online webinar workshops (which have limited enrollment in order to maximize peer networking and interaction with the trainer). Workshop participation is strongly encouraged, as it will help maximize your ability to enact your strategic plan. See application for a full list of ValleyCreates webinars.
Social media promotional support for 1-2 projects per artist with CFWM's and A4A's social accounts.
Access to a strong ValleyCreates network of fellow artists.
Funds will be dispersed upon the completion of the above requirements. If a selected artist completes these requirements quickly, they can expect to receive their mini-grant funds in as little as a month from being selected into the program. (Please note that for most recipients, the artist working capital grant will not be regarded as income for tax purposes, and will not result in a 1099 being issued, which is one reason we are prioritizing a working capital grant opportunity over an emergency grant opportunity, which would typically be considered taxable income.)
APPLICATION DEADLINE: June 5, 2020
(No application fee or tuition fees)
Eligible applicants are artists aged 18+ of any discipline (painters, sculptors, installation artists, new media artists, craft artisans, designers, film-makers, photographers, performers, writers, musicians, thespians, dancers, etc.) who live OR have a studio address in Franklin, Hampshire, or Hampden Counties. A studio address can include access to shared studio space, such as at an artist collective. Artists who have previously participated in Assets for Artists programs, including the Studios at MASS MoCA, A4A Matched Savings, or Capacity-Building programs, areeligible to apply. Artists who recently received a ValleyCreates mini-grant are not eligible to apply.
After meeting the above eligibility, applications will be assessed based on the following criteria
Applicant's stated financial need
Applicant's history of creative work (whether emerging or seasoned)
A commitment to working with the applicant's community
This program promotes equal opportunity and seeks diversity in its applicants and participants.
We will not be seeking follow-up reports or proof of exactly how the funds were utilized. Before the artist receives their funds, however, they will be expected to submit a basic "strategic plan" to identify their major goals and action steps for the year ahead, and they must meet (electronically) with staff at MASS MoCA's Assets for Artists program for possible feedback. See above for other program requirements.