ArtsWave’s Black and Brown Artists Program (Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana)

ArtsWave, City of Cincinnati and other funding partners announce the third year of a joint grantmaking program for Black and Brown artists.

Donor Name:  ArtsWave

States: Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana

County: Selected Counties

Type of Grant: Grant

Deadline (mm/dd/yyyy): 11/04/2022

Size of the Grant: $10,000


Artists of any artistic discipline are invited to propose projects exploring the themes of “Healing, Rebirth and Reconnecting” to build upon the current artistic commentary of health and race and to connect it with historical events and visions of a more equitable future.

Projects should connect with one or more goals as outlined in ArtsWave’s Blueprint for Collective Action: 1) to deepen roots in our community; 2) to bridge cultural divides; 3) to promote learning and understanding; 4) to put Cincinnati on the map; or 5) to enliven neighborhoods. Projects should also involve some aspect of collaboration with neighborhood or community groups or partners. In this way, members of the Cincinnati region will engage with this major social justice moment and work towards realizing a more just and equitable present and future through the arts.

Funding Amounts

Grant awards will be made up to $10,000. Proposed projects may be funded in part or in whole, and applicant should address in their narrative if partial funding is not feasible to complete the proposed project. Seventy-five percent of the award will be paid when grant is awarded; the remaining 25% will be paid upon completion of an interim report due March 1, 2023.

Who May Apply

Applicants for a Black and Brown Artists Program project grant are:

  • An individual artist (either working as a sole proprietor or under an organized LLC as the sole member of the LLC), or teaching artist, working in any artistic discipline*
  • Black, Indigenous, and People of Color
  • 18 years of age or older
  • Full-time resident in one of the 16 counties** served by ArtsWave, prior to January 1, 2022 and at the time of the grant award;
  • Have reported taxable income related to your work as an individual artist or teaching artist in your most recently filed tax return; and/or have a verifiable body of work through digital work samples or website.

IMPORTANT: Starting during the FY22 grant cycle, an artist may receive funding for two (2) consecutive years and then will be required to take one (1) year off before applying for the Black and Brown Artists grant program again. For example, if you received a grant last year (FY2022) and you receive one this year (FY2023), you would not be eligible again to apply until FY2025.

*For the purpose of this program, artistic disciplines include Dance, Music, Opera/Musical Theatre, Theatre, Visual Arts, Design & Textile Arts, Crafts, Photography, Media Arts, Literature, Folk/Traditional Arts, Performing Arts, Spoken Word or Interdisciplinary Arts.

**The 16 counties include Cincinnati-Middletown, OH-KY-IN MSA, which includes the following counties: Brown, Butler, Clermont, Hamilton, and Warren Counties in Ohio; Boone, Bracken, Campbell, Gallatin, Grant, Kenton, and Pendleton Counties in Kentucky; and Dearborn, Franklin, Ohio, and Union Counties in Indiana.

Eligible Expenses

Expenses must be directly associated with the funded activity and include:

  • Artist Fee (self-compensation)
  • Fees paid to other artists or collaborative partners as part of this project
  • Materials/Supplies
  • Online tools/services
  • Marketing
  • Community engagement activities
  • Other expenses directly associated with the funded activity

Ineligible Expenses

  • Refinance or repayment of existing debt
  • Expenses related to gambling or gaming activities
  • Expenses related to the purveyance of “adult” materials (i.e., pornographic, lewd, prurient, obscene, etc.)
  • Activities, services, products or materials involving nude or semi-nude performances or the sale of sexual aids or devices
  • Real estate investment business expenses
  • Religious-affiliated organization expenses
  • Any expenses that give rise to or support any other activity constituting a nuisance
  • Capital purchases
  • Any expenses supporting any illegal activity

Criteria for Evaluating Proposals

Applications will be reviewed by a panel consisting of community volunteers and awarded by the ArtsWave Board of Directors using the following criteria:

  • Project must align with the Healing, Rebirth and Reconnecting themes. Topics include, but are not limited to:
    • Social justice (e.g. equal rights; reproductive rights; trans rights; healthcare for all)
    • Black Lives Matter
    • Indigenous Sovereignty
    • Healing and Accountability
    • Tradition vs Innovation
    • Written History vs Oral History
    • Environmental Justice
  • Projects  should leverage the power of the arts in one or more ways as outlined in  ArtsWave’s Blueprint for Collective Action: 1) to deepen roots in the community; 2) to bridge cultural divides; 3) to promote learning and understanding; 4) to put Cincinnati on the map; or 5) to enliven neighborhoods
  • Meaningful involvement of and collaboration with community members or neighborhood partners, so that residents are involved in reconciliation and imagining a more just and equitable Cincinnati
  • Track record of artistic work; and
  • Project budget and timeline are reasonable and sufficient to execute the project.

For more information, visit Black and Brown Artists Program.