Mass Cultural Council believes that the work of individual artists is essential to a thriving and vital society. We are excited to announce the 2020 grant cycle of the Artist Fellowships to support artists and the excellence of their creative work.
The Artist Fellowships are unrestricted awards to Massachusetts artists, given in recognition of excellence. This year, the Fellowship grants are $15,000. Finalist awards will increase this year to $1,500 (from $1,000 last cycle).*
In all categories except Traditional Arts, the Artist Fellowships are judged anonymously, based on the artistic quality and creative ability of the original work submitted. (In Traditional Arts, the review is not anonymous and there is additional review criteria.)
There are two deadlines per grant cycle. The discipline categories are divided between the two deadlines. Applications are now being accepted in Drawing & Printmaking, Poetry, and Traditional Arts. Deadline: Monday, October 7, 2019.
Mass Cultural Council will accept applications in Choreography, Fiction/Creative Nonfiction, and Painting beginning December 15, 2019. Deadline: Monday, January 27, 2020.
The Artist Fellowships categories recur every other year. Next year (2021), we will accept applications in:
Crafts, Dramatic Writing, and Sculpture/Installation/New Genres (Fall deadline)
Film & Video, Music Composition, and Photography (Winter deadline)
Who should apply for an Artist Fellowship? We welcome applications from Massachusetts artists who create original work and meet the eligibility requirements (see guidelines). Read our tips on applying for an Artist Fellowship.
NEW THIS CYCLE:
We are thrilled to announce that, due to an increase in Mass Cultural Council’s budget from the state legislature, we have increased the Finalist award amount from $1,000 to $1,500. The Fellowship award amount will remain at $15,000.
In the Poetry category, we will continue to accept manuscripts as work samples, and this year will be begin accepting audio and video files, in addition. The purpose is to encourage inclusion of all forms and genres of poetry, including performance poetry, spoken word, or other original poetic works where performance is emphasized.
Read full program guidelines, eligibility requirements, and application instructions.
Massachusetts has been awarding Artist Fellowships since 1975. Hear the stories of some of the incredible artists who have received support in the last 40+ years.
Images and media: Susan Lichtman (Painting Fellow ’18), STUDIO DOORS WITH VACUUM (2016), oil on linen, 64×58 in; Tory Fair (Drawing & Printmaking Fellow ’18, PAPERWEIGHT (WITH COLOR) (2017), paper, pulp, stone, dye, 14x13x4 in; Neena Gulati (Choreography Fellow ’18) performing in 2017; Mass Cultural Council video highlighting the stories of five artists who received Artist Fellowships since 1975.
* Change in Finalist award amount is pending approval by Mass Cultural Council’s governor-appointed Council, in August 2019.
When is next sculpture deadline?
Thank you for your comment. We hope to announce the dates and guidelines for the 2021 Artist Fellowships (including in Sculpture/Installation/New Genres) very soon. Please sign up for our e-newsletter Artist News to receive notifications about the Artist Fellowships: https://massculturalcouncil.org/