Application Requirements


Applications are open to artists in need creating original, independent work in the visual arts, film/video/electronic/digital arts, or choreography, who are seeking support for a medical, dental or mental health-related emergency. Only generative artists—the creator of the original work—may apply. Please review what artistic disciplines are eligible.

Applications must be in English (though they may be translated by someone other than the applicant) and can be completed by a proxy if needed.

All applications, including support materials, should be submitted online via Submittable. However, we understand that under certain conditions, it may be easier for an artist to submit a paper application or receive assistance with an online application. Please contact [email protected] or 212.366.6900 ext. 239 to request assistance or an accommodation.

To complete an application, applicants will need to:

  • Describe the onset and nature of your medical/dental/mental health emergency (maximum 100 words)
  • Provide the onset date of the emergency
  • Request a grant amount, up to $5,000
  • List the specific expenses for which you are requesting funding (maximum 50 words)
  • Describe the impact of the emergency on your creative practice (maximum 150 words)
  • Describe the economic severity of your condition (maximum 150 words)
  • Describe the severity of your medical/dental/mental health condition (maximum 150 words)
  • Provide your annual adjusted gross income (averaged over the last two years)
  • Complete the access to resources checklist
  • Complete the medical severity checklist
  • Include as much valid documentation confirming condition/diagnosis and proof of expense as possible, such as:
    • Invoices (invoices should include date of service and type of service; name of provider and amount paid/payable).
    • Documentation should be from a care provider and be on official letterhead.

If you haven’t yet received a diagnosis or treatment, and/or your documentation isn’t on hand, provide as much information about your condition as possible, including estimates of treatment costs in your local area, if possible

Do not send images such as photographs and x-rays.

Submit a resume/bio/CV which shows recent and sustained artistic practice over the course of at least the last five years, since 2019, in an eligible discipline or disciplines. List specific events/opportunities for the public to experience your work over this time (at least once annually), including the year, location (city or town and venue), and title. These can include exhibits/screenings/performances/activities in art spaces, galleries, local businesses, art houses/film series, public art installations, public spaces, museums, fairs/festivals, community projects, and/or residencies with public-facing components. Works-in-progress are eligible; student exhibits, performances, and other activities are not. We do not accept portfolios/work samples. Reduced activity during the pandemic (2020-2021) is acceptable. Work that is created for online distribution and consumption is eligible IF it is a creative work, and was actively marketed to the public for showing at a specific date and time. If self-produced online presentations or sales of your work are your sole platform, such as Instagram or YouTube, or your work is only available on-demand, we cannot consider your application eligible.


Due to the large number of qualified applications and the limited amount of funds, NYFA uses a two-step award process.

1. Applications are reviewed by NYFA Grants Staff for eligibility and completeness. Eligible applications are then assessed by an outside panel based on the criterion:

  • Demonstrated need.
    • Severity of the medical/dental/mental health condition.
    • Economic severity of the condition.
    • The potential impact of funding on the artist’s ability to continue/return to their creative practice.

2. Following the panel review, the top pool of applications based on scores is placed into a lottery for the final awards.

Please note, this is a very competitive category, and an application is not a guarantee of support.

A note on privacy: We take the privacy of applicants and recipients seriously. The names of recipients of emergency grants are not published on our website or in our 990 or other financial documents. All reviewers sign confidentiality agreements, and the medical documentation and financial information such as tax returns is kept confidential and only seen by staff.



Send all questions to [email protected] or 212.366.6900 ext. 239. Inquiries to the Robert Rauschenberg Foundation will be forwarded directly to [email protected].

Image Credit: Detail Robert Rauschenberg; Hearts (Spread); 1979; solvent transfer, fabric collage, graphite, Plexiglas boxes, and electric lights on wood panels; private collection; Copyright: Robert Rauschenberg Foundation