What creative engagement activities are eligible?

The possibilities of eligible activities are endless. However, all activities need to meet the following criteria to be eligible:

  • Be creative in nature
  • Be presented in NYC
  • Be live and in person*
  • Be free to the public 

*In some approved circumstances, artists may be able to present their activities online

A full list of the eligibility criteria is listed on the Application Guidelines page.

Eligible creative engagement activities might include:

  • A live music, dance, theatre, literary reading performance, or other performance
  • An in person art making workshop with community members
  • A public screening of a film or other media work
  • A component of a larger work 
  • A component of a work still in development ie: a first reading of a play
  • An art exhibition in a community center or other public or private venue
  • A live art making experience, such as painting of a mural
I am an artist with a disability and/or am immunocompromised and would prefer to present my activity online, am I eligible?

Yes. We understand that some artists might not be able to present their activity in person and would need to conduct their activity online.

Activities presented online must still be live.

What is the best way to secure a permit for my activity?

Artists are expected to secure their own permits to present their creative engagement in public. A City Artist Corps Grants recipient who can demonstrate having previously received funding from a borough arts council in 2019 or 2020 (for any program) is eligible to obtain a permit through NYC’s Open Culture program on their own. An artist who has not previously received grant support through a borough artist council may apply for an Open Culture permit via an eligible sponsor organization. Detailed guidelines about how to obtain a permit can be found here.

Can/should I apply in Cycle 1 as well as Cycle 2 and Cycle 3?

Applicants only need to apply once, based on the timing of their proposed creative engagement. If an applicant submits an eligible activity with flexible dates but is not selected for a grant in their application Cycle, they will automatically be placed into the next available Cycle lottery.

Within the application form, the applicant will indicate if they would like their activity to be considered for future cycles.

Can I apply more than once in each Cycle?

No. Artists can only submit one application in each Cycle. Artists can only receive one (1) grant in total from across the entire City Artist Corps Grants program.

 Can I apply as a collaboration?

No. All artists must apply as individuals. If selected, funds will be distributed to the applying artist and the recipient must submit the final report. How the recipient decides to distribute the funds to successfully complete their creative engagement activity is up to them.

Can multiple artists apply with the same activity?

Yes. If multiple artists are coming together to present a collaborative engagement, they can all apply individually with the same activity proposal. However, there is no guarantee that all collaborating artists will be selected through the lottery process.

 Can I apply on behalf of someone else with their consent?

Yes, someone may apply on behalf of another with their consent. Ensure that they are creating a Submittable account, and submitting the application under that person’s name, with their contact information.

Does my activity need to occur outdoors?

No. While outdoor activities are preferred, it is not essential. Activities can be presented in the location that best meets the needs of the activity.

I am a curator, producer, literary manager, academic officer, or like minded individual or community organizer, can I apply to put on a show?

No. All applicants must be practicing artists and be able to demonstrate a sustained commitment to their creative practice in order to be eligible.

My proposed creative engagement activity will be ticketed behind a paywall, is this allowed?

No. All activities funded through City Artist Corps Grants must be free and open to the public.

Artists may use a ticketing system for capacity or timed entry reasons, but all tickets must be free.

What types of arts practices are eligible?

Applicants need to have a sustained creative practice in any discipline including but not limited to Craft / Textiles, Choreography / Dance, Community arts, Design / Architecture, Digital / Electronic Arts, Folk / Traditional Arts, Interdisciplinary Work, Literary arts, Music / Sound, Theatre and performance, Video / Film or Visual Art.

What do you mean by a “sustained, ongoing creative practice”?

Applicants need to be practicing artists and be able to demonstrate an ongoing commitment to their arts practice. Applicants need to demonstrate that they have participated, created, or maintained their artistic practice and provide documentation from any time over the past 2 years (2019 to date) to demonstrate this. There should also be a public engagement component to the artist’s work such as a creative community engagement activity, exhibitions, shows, community based programs, performances, or other public presentations of the artist’s work.

We understand that artists may have had an interruption to their practice in 2020 due to COVID-19 and in that case may only be able to provide documentation from 2019.

Can my creative engagement activity be presented online?

Activities must be presented in person and to a live audience. However, we understand that some artists might not be able to present their activity safely in person. Applicants will need to specify in their application why they need to present their activity online.

Can I use additional funding, other than a City Artist Corps grant, to support my creative public engagement? 

Yes. Additional funding and resources can be used to complete the proposed activity.

Do I need to document my activity?

Yes. All recipients should be prepared to photograph their activity as it is happening. This does not need to be professional documentation. Recipients will need to provide 2 images in their final report for the activity taking place and record the estimated number of attendees.

Will I receive a 1099 for this grant?

Yes. All recipients will need to complete a W9 and will receive a 1099 in January/February 2022 for the grant amount.


How can I apply / where can I find the application form?

Eligibility criteria and application can be found on the Submittable platform. A link to the application will appear on this page on Tuesday, June 8 at 10:00AM and will also be available here: https://cityartistscorpsgrants.submittable.com/submit

If an artist has submitted an application with NYFA Grants in the past, they can use those credentials to apply for this grant. New users will need to visit  www.submittable.com to start a free account.

Can I submit a hardcopy application or submit an application via email?

No. All applications must be submitted online via the Submittable platform. However, we are offering assistance to those who require it. To request an accommodation or assistance in applying, please email [email protected]. We ask that requests for accommodation be made as soon as possible to allow adequate time for staff to support applicants in submitting an application before the deadline.

What file types can I upload to my application form?

The application form accepts the following file types: PDF, JPG, DOC, DOCX, MP4, MP3, and MOV and web links.

Will the application be open continuously for the duration of the fund?

Applications will be open during three distinct Cycles. Within each Cycle, the application will be open continuously.

Application Cycle 1
Engagements from July 10 to October 31, 2021
Open: Tuesday, June 8 at 10:00AM
Close: Tuesday, June 22 at 10:00AM
Recipients notified: Friday, July 2

Application Cycle 2
Engagements from August 20 to October 31, 2021

Open: Tuesday, July 6 at 10:00AM
Close: Tuesday, July 20 at 10:00AM
Recipients notified: Monday, August 2

Application Cycle 3
Engagements from September 3 to October 31

Open: Tuesday, July 27, at 10:00AM
Close: Tuesday, August 10 at 10:00AM
Recipients notified: Wednesday, August 25

All applicants who have saved a draft application within Submittable will be notified 24 hours before the application closes. The application will not reopen once it closes.

Why are you collecting demographic data from applicants and who has access to this information?

The City Artist Corps Grants are intended to support NYC-based working artists who have been disproportionately impacted by COVID-19. The collection of demographic information allows us to ensure that the pool of recipients reflects this.

By providing demographic data artists are helping New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA), New York City’s Department of Cultural Affairs (DCLA) and the Mayor’s office of Media and Entertainment (MOME) better understand the artist ecosystems that live and create in NYC. Information provided will not be stored or collated with applications.

All demographic information will be collected anonymously and will be shared with administration staff at DCLA and MOME, and re-grant partnering organizations.

NYFA is committed to supporting artists from all backgrounds and disciplines and will continue to work towards values of equity, diversity, inclusion, and accessibility across all programs.

Read NYFA’s DEIA statement on our website.


How will applications be selected for funding?

Once closed, all applications will be reviewed for completeness and eligibility. Qualifying applicants will be selected by a lottery system overseen by NYFA.

Why are qualifying applications being selected by a lottery system?

The lottery system allows equal consideration to every qualifying application received during the application cycle. The random selection of the lottery system ensures that early submissions are not given undue advantage over those submitting materials towards the end of the Cycle.

Once I apply, when will I hear back?

All applicants will be notified by email via Submittable from [email protected] Please keep an eye out for this communication and check spam/junk folders.

Notification dates:

Cycle 1 recipients notified: Friday, July 2
Cycle 2 recipients notified: Monday, August 2
Cycle 3 recipients notified: Wednesday, August 25

If an applicant submits a completed and eligible activity in a Cycle with flexible dates, but they are not awarded a grant, they will automatically be placed into the next available lottery. 

How will funds be distributed?

Recipients will receive their $5,000 grant in two installments: $4,000 upon selection and $1,000 once the grant final report is completed successfully.  

All funding will be distributed via paper checks sent by mail. If a recipient is not able to receive a mailed check, arrangements can be made for another form of payment.

What will you require to issue my grant payment?

All recipients will be asked to complete a W-9 and funds will be distributed via check to the address listed on your W 9.

To ensure funds are received in a timely manner, recipients will be asked to provide a W9 within a week of being notified of selection. All applicants will be notified by email via Submittable from [email protected]. Please keep an eye out for this communication and check spam/junk folders. 

Am I guaranteed to receive funds?

No. Unfortunately, due to limited funds and the anticipated very high volume of applications, not every applicant will be funded.

Can I receive the grant more than once?

No. An artist may only receive one (1) grant from across the entire City Artist Corps program (Cycles 1, 2, and 3).

If I’m awarded a grant, will my name be made public?

 If selected, an artist’s name, engagement activity, and engagement location may be made public.

If I receive a grant, will there be reporting requirements?

Yes. All recipients will need to provide a final report once the activity is complete. The report will be sent to all recipients via Submittable and will require applicants to submit photo documentation of the engagement activity.  

Recipients will only receive the final $1,000 on successful completion of the engagement activity and submission of a final report. 

What can I use the funding for?

City Artist Corps funding is intended to support NYC-based working artists who have been disproportionately impacted by COVID-19.  Grant funds must be used to support an artist’s practice, including a creative public engagement during the grant period. It is up to the artist to determine the engagement budget and how best to allocate the funds. It is strongly encouraged that a portion of the funds be used to pay the artist and other participating artists for their time.

Is the grant taxable?

All recipients will receive a 1099 in January 2022. NYFA cannot advise on tax matters and we strongly encourage grant recipients to seek professional advice relating to personal tax matters.


 Email [email protected]

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