A new online system for Art Grants has quietly gone live. It’s buried deep in the blackrockarts site. The deadline is December 1 and you have to pay a fee to submit your Letter of Intent. It’s a little confusing – although it is called “Burning Man Grants for Art”, it’s only for art projects that aren’t going to Burning Man.
Burning Man Arts — the new department combining the Black Rock City Art Department with the Black Rock Arts Foundation (BRAF) — will launch a new online system in mid-November designed to make it easier for artists to apply for honoraria grants for art destined for Black Rock City.
This year, applicants will be required to first submit a Letter of Intent (LOI), which will allow the Grant Committee to select which projects will be invited to participate in the full grant application process, saving everybody time and effort.
The system will go live in mid-November, and LOI submissions will be accepted for four weeks. The Grant Committee aims to inform artists if they are invited to participate in the full grant application process by the beginning of 2015.
All artists hoping to receive a Black Rock City honorarium will need to participate in this new LOI process.
More information will be made available via the Jackrabbit Speaks and on the Burning Man Arts web pages as the rollout approaches.
Reading between the lines, I figure that both the blackrockarts.org and burningman.com sites have incorrect information, and artists who want an Honorarium Art Grant for a project at Burning Man 2015 should treat the Jackrabbit’s information as the most current – and wait for an announcement of the new system.
The other new online system that Black Rock Arts announced in their October newsletter, is for non-Playa art:
Burning Man Grants for Art (formerly the BRAF Grants to Artists program) 2015 grant cycle is underway! The online form for submitting a Letter of Intent (LOI) is now live. Tell us about your fantastic idea for a community-driven, interactive art project!
We fund projects that incorporate community involvement and exist for public benefit. If you’re hatching an idea for a project that brings people together, prompts interaction, and reaches beyond traditional experiences of public art, we’d love to hear about it!
The deadline for “Burning Man Grants for Art” – which, to be clear, is actually for art that is NOT for Burning Man – is December 1 2014, so artists who want to be considered for that need to pay the fees and get their submissions in, in the next 11 days. They fund 10 to 15 projects a year, between $500 and $10,000, with grants typically being in the range of $2000 – $6000.
We have begun accepting Letters of Inquiry (LOI’s) for our 2014-2015 grant cycle. Read on to find a link to the LOI submission form. The deadline to submit an LOI is December 1, 2014. Late LOI’s will not be accepted, with no exceptions.
Full proposals will be accepted by invitation only, with LOI applicants either invited to submit a proposal or rejected by early January 2015 (exact date TBD).
We prioritize funding highly interactive, community-driven, collaborative works of art that are accessible to the public and civic in scope.
What is ‘interactive’ art?
- Art that requires human interaction to complete the piece.
- Art that involves the community and the audience in its creation, presentation and display.
- Art that prompts the viewer to act.
- Art that can be experienced in more ways than visually. We are fans of art that is can be approached, touched, heard or experienced, as well as viewed.
- Art that prompts people to interact with one another.
- Art that responds to participants and to its environment.
- Art that causes people to reflect on the larger community.
- Art that challenges the viewers’ traditional perspective on art.
- Art that belongs to the public and exists for the benefit of all.
What kind of work does this program not fund?
Although we are open to all proposed forms of media, there are some common projects that typically fall outside the scope of our criteria. The exception to all of the examples listed below would be if the project had a highly interactive element that moves the project outside the definitions of its genre.
We typically do not fund:
- Static work, such as sculpture with no interactive component
- Gallery work, such as paintings in a gallery
- Publications – poetry books, photo books, fiction, etc
- Screenplays or films
- Musical, theater or dance productions
- Social aid/relief efforts
- Entrepreneurial endeavors
- Art destined for the annual Burning Man event in Black Rock City. There is a separate grant process to fund playa-bound artwork. Please visit the Burning Man website to learn more about the BRC Honorarium application process. (This program does, however, sometimes fund works headed to regional Burning Man events)
Our grants range between $500 and $10,000, but we most commonly award between $2000 and $6000. We typically fund approximately from 10 to 15 projects a year and receive as many as 300 proposals.
Full proposals will be accepted by invitation only in early 2015. To be invited, you must submit a Letter of Inquiry by December 1st.
- Our online LOI application for our 2015 grant cycle is live!
- LOI’s are due December 1, 2014, 5:00 pm, Pacific Standard Time.
- Selected applicants will be invited to submit a full proposal by early January, 2015 (exact date TBA).
- Proposals are accepted by invitation only, and will be due in February, 2015 (exact date TBA)
- Selected grantees are usually announced March 15 of the year of the award.
- Funds are usually released to new grantees April 1 of the year of the award.
Late Letters of Inquiry and proposals will not be accepted. No exceptions. Please read our application instructions below for more details on how to apply.
Letter of Inquiry Instructions
Our online Letter of Inquiry will give you the opportunity to provide us with the following:
- Name of contact person, contact person’s phone number, email address and mailing address
- Name of the lead artist or program manager if different from the contact person
- Name of project or program
- An invitation code, which is “GrantsForArt-LOI-2015“
- Brief description of the physical manifestation of project or program (1500 characters, about 250 words or 1 double-spaced page)
- Brief description of how the project or program fits the program’s grant criteria and definition of interactivity. (1500 characters, about 250 words or 1 double-spaced page)
- One to three images or other media files
Invitations for proposals will be extended to selected projects in late December 2014 or early January 2015. If selected, you will be invited to fill out our full application online. Uninvited proposals will not be considered.
In our online application, you will have the opportunity to tell us about your project, its goals, audience and interactive potential.
A complete proposal includes:
- The completion of the online proposal. We do not accept printed and mailed proposals.
- A timeline. Our online application has a form where you may describe your timeline, or you may upload your own format. We prefer you use our online form.
- A budget. Our online application will have a link to a template you may use, or you may upload your own format. We prefer you use our template.
- Supplemental images and materials. You will have the opportunity to upload images or other media files. We highly recommend you submit visual representations of your proposed project.
Once again, the burden is shifted to the artists, who have to pay to submit a Letter of Intent, and pay again to submit a full proposal. $1500 doesn’t seem like too much for BMOrg to spend on software licensing, to let the 300 artists submitting proposals send them in for free. It’s less than 3 Donation tickets. Sure, it’s only five bucks (twice, if the artist makes it through the first round) – but it’s only five bucks to the corporation raking in $30 million a year, too, and to the non-profit entity with more than $1 million of undistributed assets. It seems a little cheap, for a charity whose sole purpose is supporting the Arts.
We’re still waiting on the announcement of 2015’s theme, which would be helpful to know for artists submitting their ideas for grants.
The 2014 theme was announced on January 8, the 2013 theme was announced on November 30, 2012, and the 2012 theme was announced on this day, November 19, three years ago at the Artumnal Gathering fundraising gala. The 2014 Artumnal will be held this Saturday, perhaps the announcement will come then.