Spotlight: The Clark Hulings Fund
Elizabeth Hulings Diamond. Photo: Ken Howard
The Clark Hulings Fund for Burgeoning Visual Artists helps early-stage professionals take advantage of specific opportunities that will drive their careers forward. By providing support at pivotal moments, The Fund strives to improve the prospects of up-and-coming artists, and enable others to encounter and be enriched by their work. The Fund awards two grants of up to $5,000 per year to painters, sculptors and artists working on paper. NYFA asked Elizabeth Hulings Diamond, Managing Director of the Clark Hulings Trust, what artists should consider when they apply for the grant.
NYFA: First of all, can you tell us a little about Clark Hulings and what the Clark Hulings Fund supports?
EHD: Clark Hulings (1922-2011) was an American realist painter renowned as a compelling observer of life. His luminous rural and urban landscapes were drawn from six decades of travel abroad and throughout the US. The Fund seeks to help others follow in Hulings’ footsteps so we can all be enriched by their work as we are by his.
The Clark Hulings Fund offers grants to professional visual artists who have secured tangible prospects for advancing their careers but lack sufficient financial resources to capitalize on those opportunities. In November 2013, The Fund will distribute two awards of up to $5,000 each in the categories of 1-painting, drawing and works on paper, and 2-sculpture. These grants will be awarded annually. The Fund hopes to increase the number of grants offered in coming years, and to expand its activities to include assistance with the business of being an artist.
NYFA: What kinds of details do you look for in an artist’s request for support?
EHD: The mission of the Fund is to provide tangible support to professional artists. So the more specific the applicant can be about how the funds would be used and how a grant from the Clark Hulings Fund would benefit them, the better.
NYFA: What makes an application stand out to the judging panel?
EHD: Applications that seek support to take advantage of opportunities that have already presented themselves are the most exciting for us. Examples include: an invitation to mount a one-man show, or participate in a prestigious group show, the completion of a series of work, a commission, etc.
NYFA: What should artists consider when choosing images of their work to submit?
EHD: We ask for two different sets of images, one of previous work and one of work relating to the project for which they are requesting support. For the first, we really want to see the best things they’ve ever done, even if it is not similar to what they what they are currently working on. A smattering of top things is fine. For the second, we understand if there are no images yet. That will not necessarily be a disadvantage.
NYFA: What common mistakes do you see applicants make? Are there any pointers you can give to artists to help improve their applications?
EHD: Since this is our inaugural grant cycle we don’t have much to say about this yet! I will say that the most important thing for applicants to do is to secure a fiscal sponsor. (Because we are currently under the umbrella of a community foundation, we are unable to disperse grant money directly to individuals. The grantees must have an established relationship with a 501 C-3 tax exempt organization that will receive the monies on their behalf.)
NYFA: If artists have questions about the application process, how can they reach you?
EHD: The best way to reach us for questions is either by email:[email protected] or by leaving a message at: 505-983-4339.
Award deadlines are generally in the fall. Visit clarkhulings.com/the-fund for upcoming deadlines and guidelines.
Interview by Michon Ashmore, Digital Advertising Program Associate for NYFA Classifieds.