Creative Capital provides grants to support the creation of groundbreaking art by innovative and adventurous artists across the country through our national, open call process. Grants are awarded through an annual competition open to citizens, permanent residents, and O-1 visa holders of the United States. Candidates must apply to Creative Capital in order to be considered.
We are committed to funding and supporting conceptually and formally challenging, risk-taking, never-before-seen projects. Creative Capital receives more than 4,000 applications annually and funds approximately 50 artists each year. More than 75% of our awardees in recent years have been artists of color—including Black, Latinx, Asian, and Indigenous artists—of all ages, abilities, and regions across the United States.
Innovation is our primary selection criterion, and our focus on championing groundbreaking projects and ideas distinguishes Creative Capital from other granting organizations. While selecting projects that are genre-stretching and adventurous is at the core of our mission, we welcome multidisciplinary projects as well as projects that push boundaries within a single genre. All applications are reviewed by external reviewers who are scholars, curators, artists, past awardees, and experts in the field. The final recommendations for the awards are reviewed and then ratified by our Board. Awardees are announced in January. Under no circumstances will the reasons for the rejection of an application be provided.
Awardees receive direct project funding in varying amounts up to $50,000, advisory services, and a community of fellow awardees and other professionals who may provide additional support for the project. We encourage a spirit of mutual generosity among our awardees and seek to foster exchange through our artist gatherings. Over the course of a funded project, we partner with each artist to help define critical moments of development and determine how to best meet their goals. Creative Capital has helped hundreds of artists realize their projects since our inception in 1999.
Wild Futures—2023/2024 Award Cycle
In celebration of our upcoming 25th Anniversary, Creative Capital is pleased to announce “Wild Futures: Art, Culture, Impact”— the one-time theme for our next grant cycle in 2023/2024. Over a two-year period, the Creative Capital Awards will provide up to $5 million in grants to help realize 100 artists’ projects with awards of varying amounts up to $50,000 with additional advisory services per project. Since our founding in 1999, Creative Capital has been committed to funding freedom of expression through groundbreaking ideas in art and to helping artists build sustainable careers through our transformative giving model of combining financial and professional support.
We invite artists to propose experimental, risk-taking projects in the performing arts, technology, literature, visual arts, and moving image, which push boundaries formally and thematically, and/or venture into wild, out-there, never-before-seen concepts and future universes real or imagined. Ultimately, we seek proposals for groundbreaking new work—including, but not limited to, work that attends to the many relationships between social, economic, and environmental justice, and advances the global dialogue around critical issues impacting the sustainability of artists, our communities, our planet, and beyond.
CREATIVE CAPITAL GRANT CYCLE 2023/2024
Artists are invited to propose innovative new projects for the Creative Capital Awards in the following areas (projects will be evaluated by external reviewers with expertise in the qualifying fields). We invite artists to submit their proposals based on which area experts are most suited and qualified to review the project proposal, with the understanding that radical art is often by nature interdisciplinary, multidisciplinary, or antidisciplinary. By choosing to apply within a certain disciplinary category, we are asking you to choose how you want to frame the discussion around your work and to indicate which experts are most qualified to evaluate your project proposal.
Creative Capital is fiercely committed to groundbreaking ideas that challenge what art can be. As countless visionary projects selected for the Creative Capital Awards have demonstrated, socially impactful ideas are embedded in the work of forward-thinking artists in a myriad of forms, often with the goal of imagining new forms of living. Social engagement can take shape across disciplines, therefore, we have expanded opportunities for artists to propose socially engaged, multidisciplinary projects in every category instead of isolating socially engaged art as a unique formal category. In keeping with the spirit of the 17 UN 2030 Sustainable Development Goals and Project Drawdown 100 Ways to Reverse Global Warming, we too have an expansive definition of “sustainability” that goes far beyond climate change and the environmental challenges we face—including: good health and wellbeing, affordable and clean energy, reduced inequalities, life on land, and peace, justice, and strong institutions.
- Performing Arts: including dance, theatre, music, jazz, sound, non-traditional opera, multimedia performance, and socially engaged and/or sustainable performance-based practices
- Technology: including digital art, gaming, interdisciplinary arts, AR, VR, or XR, bio art, AI, data visualization, net art, new genres, and socially engaged and/or sustainable technology-based practices
- Literature: including fiction, poetry, nonfiction, genre-defying literary work, and socially engaged and/or sustainable text-based practices
- Visual Arts: including painting, sculpture, drawing, photography, architecture, design, multimedia, installation, video art, new genres, craft, and socially engaged and/or sustainable visual art-based practices
- Moving Image/Film: including experimental film, short film, animation, documentary film, narrative film, and socially engaged and/or sustainable moving image-based practices
CREATIVE CAPITAL AWARD APPLICATION
ROUND I: Tell us your idea. Letter of Inquiry (LOI)
Along with your project title, one line project description (25 words max), project description (250 words max), resume, and artist website (if applicable), please answer the following questions:
- How does your project take an original and imaginative approach to content and form? Please be as specific as possible. (150 words)
- Please place your work in context so we may better evaluate it. What are the main influences upon your work as an artist? How does your past work inform your current project? Please use concrete examples, which may include other artists’ work, art movements, cultural heritage, science, philosophy, research/work from outside the arts field, etc. (150 words)
- What kind of impact—artistic, intellectual, communal, civic, social, political, environmental, etc.—do you hope your project will have? What strategies will you employ to achieve the desired impact? (100 words)
- Who are the specific audiences/communities that you hope to engage through this project? Please think beyond the broader art community where possible. How are you hoping to reach them? (100 words)
- How might your proposed project act as a catalyst for your artistic and professional growth? In what ways is it a pivotal moment in your practice? (100 words)
- In addition to funding, Creative Capital also provides scaffolding and support services for awardees (such as expert consultations, gatherings/retreat, alumni network, workshops). How would our non-monetary services help you to realize your goals for this project and/or your long-term artistic and professional growth? (100 words)
ROUND II: Project Details
- Project itemized budget (1 page)
- Project timeline (1 page)
- Work samples (5 stills, 5 min video max)
ROUND III: Final Panel Review
Finalists submit proof of eligibility. Any finalist projects and award-winning projects which are directly related to any of the 17 UN 2030 Sustainable Development Goals and Project Drawdown 100 Ways to Reverse Global Warming will have the opportunity to have the way or the icon of that UN Sustainable Development goal attached to their project on our Creative Capital website in an effort to advance the global dialogue around these critical issues impacting the future of our communities, our planet, and beyond.
2023 Creative Capital Awards Timeline
Artists will be able to submit applications for their projects in Performance, Technology, and Literature.
- March 1 to April 1, 2022: Letter of Inquiries (LOI) accepted
- April 1, 2022 4:00 PM [Eastern Time / New York Time]: LOI deadline
- July 2022: Notification of advancement to Round II
- September 2022: Notification of advancement to Final Panel Review
- January 2023: Public announcement of 2023 Creative Capital Awards
2024 Creative Capital Awards Timeline
Artists will be able to submit applications for their projects in Visual Arts and Moving Image. These dates may change.
- March 1 to March 31, 2023: Letter of Inquiries (LOI) accepted
- March 31, 2023 4:00 PM [Eastern Time / New York Time]: LOI deadline
- July 2023: Notification of advancement to Round II
- September 2023: Notification of advancement to Final Panel Review
- January 2024: Public announcement of 2024 Creative Capital Awards
- US citizen, permanent legal resident, or O-1 visa holder
- At least 25 years old
- Working artist(s) with at least 5 years of professional artistic practice
- Applicant may not be enrolled in a degree granting program
- May not apply to the Warhol Foundation Arts Writers grant program in the same year
- May not have previously received a Creative Capital Award
- May not be an applicant or collaborator on more than one proposed project per year
Projects that are not eligible:
- Projects whose main purpose is promotional
- Project is to fund ongoing operations of existing business
- Curation or documentation of existing work
- Creative Capital invites regional, national, and international experts in a wide range of disciplines to serve in our review process.
- External reviewers are offered honoraria for their time and expertise.
- All external reviewer names are confidential until the review process has been completed.
Creative Capital accepted applications from all disciplines last year, why is it moving to different cycles for different disciplines in 2023/2024?
Our national, open call process involves expert reviewers for all artists’ applications. We will have three panels each year focused on each specific discipline. We have also increased the number of awards 43% (from 35 to 50 awards) and we will be able to make more awards in each category with 50 awards per year in 2023/2024 (Creative Capital awarded 35 awards annually across all disciplines between 2020/2021).
What happened to the Socially Engaged Art category? If I am an artist working in social practice, what disciplinary category should I choose?
Creative Capital is fiercely committed to groundbreaking ideas that challenge what art can be. As countless visionary projects selected for the Creative Capital Awards have demonstrated, socially impactful ideas are embedded in the work of forward-thinking artists in a myriad of forms, often with the goal of imagining new forms of living. Social engagement can take shape across disciplines, therefore, we have expanded opportunities for artists to propose socially engaged and/or sustainable projects in every category instead of isolating these categories.
My work spans multiple disciplines. How do I pick just one?
We invite artists to submit their proposals based on which area experts are most suited and qualified to review the project proposal, with the understanding that radical art is often by nature interdisciplinary, multidisciplinary, or antidisciplinary. By choosing to apply within a certain disciplinary category, we are asking you to choose how you want to frame the discussion around your work and to indicate which experts are most qualified to evaluate your project proposal.