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Artist Fellowship Grant

Grants to South Dakota Individuals
to Recognize Artistic Achievement

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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South Dakota Arts Council (SDAC)

Conf. Date:


Deadline Date:

03/01/20 11:59 PM CST


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Grants of $5,000 to South Dakota individuals to recognize artistic achievement. Requests will be accepted from accomplished artists from across the arts disciplines who have raised the bar for arts throughout the State. Funding is intended to recognize creative talent and to foster future artistic and career development.

Artist Fellowships are designed to:

  • Recognize South Dakota artists of exceptional talent and achievement in any arts discipline.
  • Encourage the creative achievement of South Dakota artists.
  • Acknowledge South Dakota artists who have contributed to higher standards for the arts in the state.
  • Assist South Dakota artists in the continued development of their careers in the arts.

Criteria for Awarding Grants

In reviewing applications, panelists consider the following:

  • Quality of the applicant’s work as demonstrated by artistic documentation submitted. Artistic quality accounts for 50% of an applicant’s total score and plays a critical role in panel ratings and funding recommendations. Artistic quality is determined only by the quality of the submitted documentation.
  • Record of professional activity and achievement as demonstrated in resume and support materials.
  • How an Artist Fellowship will contribute to the artist’s professional growth and career advancement. 
  • Potential for contribution to higher standards for the arts in South Dakota.

The South Dakota Arts Council encourages the development of new projects and those which strengthen existing arts programs.

Priority is given to quality projects which:

  • Employ professional artists, especially those living in South Dakota.
  • Focus on underdeveloped arts disciplines.
  • Recognize and relate to the cultural needs of the state and community.
  • Make the arts available to new, minority, and geographically isolated audiences.
  • Bring the arts into schools with the support of the local school.
  • Reach beyond a town’s boundaries to attract new audiences.
  • Train local talent to follow through on future projects.
  • Include financial contributions from participants of workshops.
  • Advance the role of the arts in economic development efforts.
  • Enhance cultural tourism.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 178598

Number of Grants:

It is anticipated that only four Fellowships will be awarded each year; however, the specific number will be left to the discretion of the South Dakota Arts Council, based on the Council’s budget and the applicant artists’ qualifications.

Estimated Size of Grant:

Artist Fellowships of $5,000 will be awarded.

Term of Contract:

All planned project events/activities and expenditures must take place within the defined time (July 1, 2020 – June 30, 2021).

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Applicants must be residents of South Dakota for at least two years prior to the date of their application (March 1, 2020) and remain residents throughout the grant cycle (July 1, 2020 – June 30, 2021).

Artists may only apply for one of the following grants per year: Artist Fellowship, Artist Collaboration Grant, Artist
Project Grant, Artists Career Development Grant, or Traditional Arts Apprenticeship Grant.

Artists with limited publication, performance, or exhibition records should apply for the Artist Career Development Grant rather than the Fellowship. Fellowships are intended to reward artists who demonstrate outstanding professional records of accomplishment.

The South Dakota Arts Council does not fund:
- Artists with limited publication, performance, or exhibition records should apply for the Artist Career
Development Grant rather than an Artist Fellowship.
- Artist Fellowship recipients are not eligible to apply again for three years. For example, an artist awarded an
Artist Fellowship in July 2019 (FY20) cannot reapply for artist grants until the Spring of 2022 (FY23).
- Academic research or formal study toward an academic or professional degree is not eligible for funding.
- Students pursuing high school diplomas and graduate or undergraduate degrees are not eligible.
- Currently serving South Dakota Arts Council board members and staff are not eligible.

Not Funded:
Capital improvements, new construction, or restoration.
- Costs associated with fundraising activities such as galas, parties, or other events where alcohol is available (these items listed cannot be included in your application or evaluation as they are a direct violation of our partnership agreement with the National Endowment for the Arts).
- Tuition assistance and scholarships for which the primary purpose is to generate academic credit.
- Prize money for competitions.
- Events or projects that have already taken place.
- Events or projects that do not take place within the defined period of time (July 1, 2020 – June 30, 2021).
- Costs of entertainment, including amusement and social activities such as receptions, parties, galas, dinners, etc., and any associated costs including catering, alcohol, planning, staffing, supplies, etc. (these items listed CANNOT be included in your application or evaluation as they are a direct violation of our partnership agreement with the National Endowment for the Arts).
- Arts projects that exclude the public. This includes performances and workshops which are available to the public only through a subscription season ticket or membership.
- Arts activities that occur during a religious service. Religious organizations may apply for a grant but only for arts components that do not occur as part of a religious service. Activities that are open to the public are encouraged.
- Projects involving travel outside the state, except when projects involve South Dakota Arts Council cooperative projects with neighboring states, Fellowship or Artist project grants, Artist Career Development Grants, Artist Collaboration Grants, or Traditional Arts Apprenticeship Grants.

Pre-proposal Conference:

SDAC staff will be available to help assess specific needs and assist in the development of grant proposals for artists and nonprofit organizations. Scheduled assistance events include:
- Jan. 13-17 – One-on-one support via phone consult, 8:00 AM - Noon.
- Feb. 3-7 – One-on-one support via phone consult, 1:00-5:00 pm.
- Jan. 30 - Grant Workshop, 9:00 AM, Avera Sacred Heart Hospital (501 Summit, Yankton). Participants will hear detailed information about our grant programs, the review process, and be able to ask direct questions about your projects.
- Feb. 5 - Grant Workshop, 5:30 PM, Racing Magpie (406 5th St, Rapid City).

Pre-Application Information:

- Applications open Dec. 16, 2019.
- Draft Review deadline closes at 11:59 PM CST, Feb.9, 2020. The SDAC encourages all applicants (especially first- time artist applicants) to take advantage of this opportunity.
- Applications close at 11:59 PM CST, March 1, 2020.
- Grant awards will be announced in May for the fiscal year starting July 1.

Hard-copy applications submitted through the mail will not be accepted.

Funds do not have to be matched.

Draft Review:
SDAC staff members offer a draft review prior to final grant submission deadlines to help applicants improve their applications by checking for mistakes or omissions that might cause ineligibility. SDAC staff will provide feedback to the applicant in time to make corrections ahead of the submission deadline. To receive a draft review, applicants must contact staff prior to submitting their grant application in the online system and prior to the Feb. 9 deadline.
The SDAC encourages all applicants to take advantage of this opportunity.

- FAQ:
- Support and Resources:

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Apply Online:

To receive a draft review, applicants must contact:

South Dakota Arts Council staff are available to answer your grant questions by phone or email:

Patrick Baker, Director
Phone 605-773-5507

Rebecca Cruse, Deputy Director
Phone 605-773-5084

Kate Vandel, Arts Grant Specialist
Phone 605-773-5925

Department of Tourism
711 E Wells Ave
Pierre, SD 57501

P: 800-952-3625
F: 605-773-5977

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: South Dakota

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