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2024 Funds for Artists

Application Portal
Application Portal


This fund is designed to assist artists with the cost of materials, supplies and resources used to create new work, professional development or learning opportunities, and/or marketing or promotional expenses.


Who is eligible to apply?

This fund is for individuals who work in the following disciplines: dance, fashion, film, literary, music, theatre, visual arts and multi-disciplinary who meet the following criteria:

  • Are working artists (age 18 and older)
    • GCAC Definition of a Working Artist:
      • Has a portfolio, body of work, collection, published works, or performance history;
      • Is likely paid for performances, sells their artwork, or is otherwise compensated for their artistic creation;
      • Routinely dedicates time to the creation of art and regularly shares their artwork with the public through performances, film festivals, fashion shows, publishing, exhibitions, etc.;
      • May have formal or informal training and seeks to improve their artistic skillset; actively engages with artistic community;
      • Is focused on expressing their own creative and aesthetic ideas, rather than on documentation or journalism.
    • Live in Franklin County for at least one year prior to application; OR
      • Live in a county bordering Franklin County for at least one year prior to application AND primarily exhibit, perform, produce or present artistic work in the city of Columbus;
    • Are NOT enrolled as degree-seeking undergraduate students.
    • Applicant agrees to remain a resident of central Ohio for one year after the award date.

Who is NOT eligible to apply?

We recognize that many people contribute to the creative economy of central Ohio. We appreciate the talents of all creatives working in our region. However, due to limited funding, we are unable to accept applications from:

  • Influencers or YouTube/TikTok/Instagram content creators
  • Culinary artists/chefs
  • Models and stylists
  • Make-up artists, nail artists, or hair stylists
  • Tattoo artists
  • Producers
  • Sound/recording engineers
  • Strictly commercial photographers/videographers (e.g. weddings/family portraits/business headshots)
  • Strictly club or mobile DJs hired for private or public events (e.g. weddings, clubs and parties)

Are performance, exhibit or event expenses are eligible?

Performance event, exhibition and showcase expenses are eligible, with the aim to expand support to more artists. In addition to funds to prepare and rehearse, you may request funds for public presentations such as venue rentals, special event permits, scenery costs and costumes. This is not intended for nonprofit organizations; you cannot apply for expenses related to a project supported by other GCAC grants.

Are travel expenses eligible? If so, what can I request?

Travel expenses related to specific, formal artistic opportunities are eligible. These include (but are not limited to) conferences, residencies, multi-day workshops/intensives, confirmed paid performances and touring. GCAC will not cover travel unrelated to a formal program or invitation. Travel “for inspiration” or to see other art institutions as a visitor are not eligible. At the time of application submission, artist must provide proof of confirmation for their respective opportunities. Expenses related to registration fees, flight, lodging and ground transportation are all supported. Meals and incidental expenses are not eligible.

NOTE: Receipt dates must match the proposed travel dates in the application. Expenses incurred prior to the application are not eligible.

What types of expenses do not qualify?

Not every request for financial need may qualify. The most common reason an application is not funded is because the request does not fit the program or is for an ineligible expense.

Example expenses that are NOT eligible (list is not comprehensive):

  • Smart phones, televisions, furniture or home upgrades
  • Marketing or promotion for a business other than your personal art business
  • Your own artist fees (paying yourself or living expenses)
  • Previously purchases services, products, materials or resources (no reimbursements)
  • Nonprofit led projects or programs (requests must be for the applying artist)

NOTE: If you are unsure if your expenses qualify, please contact before starting your application.


Opens February 1st, 2024
Rolling Applications You may submit anytime between February 1st and October 31st, 2024; Applications will be reviewed within 30 days after they are submitted.
Closes October 31st, 2024
Final Report Due Nine months after award date

Application Questions & Uploads

How much can I apply for?

You may request up to $500. You may receive a partial award based on funds available and eligibility of your requests.

Artists will receive a 1099 if $600 or more is received from GCAC in one calendar year (totals all payments, including but not limited to contracts, awards, and fellowships).

How often can I receive funds?

Once per calendar year. If you apply and are not awarded, please read the decline notes specific to your application and determine if you are eligible to reapply. If so, you may reapply immediately.

What kind of expenses or opportunities qualify for this fund?

Funds may be requested for the cost of supplies, materials and resources to help you make new work, to attend a professional development or learning opportunity and/or for expenses that assist with the marketing or promotion of you as an artist or your artwork.

To Make New Work Marketing Professional Development
Materials or supplies PR consultant Classes
Purchase or rental of tools Print or digital advertisement Workshops
Software/hardware Distribution services One-on-one instruction
Space rental for rehearsal, performance, exhibits, etc. Promo videos Conference registration fees
Post-production services Website or logo design Flights/lodging
Laptops/computers (NEW) Submission fees Residency/Fellowship fees

NOTE: All expense requests must be related to your specific art form.

What assistance is available for completing an online application?

  • GCAC Navigators are available to answer questions and will host monthly virtual drop-in hours.
  • Live and recorded walk-throughs of the application process will be available on our Workshop page:
  • If you do not have access to a reliable computer, a computer lab is available for filling out applications at the main GCAC offices Mon-Wednesday during business hours. To reserve a computer, please email at least 3 days before your requested reservation time.

What are the application questions?

Below you will find the current narrative questions to assist you in your application preparation. Answers less than 2-3 sentences for questions 2 and 3 will not be accepted.

  • List what you plan to spend GCAC funds on – be detailed and specific!
  • How will the funds help you create your new work, grow your artistic skills, or market your art to a broader audience?
  • Describe how you regularly share or plan to share your artwork with the public (performances, exhibitions, sales, publishing, events, etc.)

How do I complete the expense section of the application?

There is a section in the online application where you will add individual line items for each expense (up to 8). You may consolidate expenses if you are purchasing many items. Examples shown below:

Description Cost
Marketing PR Consultant $300
Art Supplies (acrylic paint, brush set, easels) $400
Custom Framing Services $1,000
Total $1,700

What are the required Supplemental Materials (uploads)?

All support materials must be uploaded digitally to the online application system. Please include as much detail as possible so that our staff can verify your qualifications easily.

Required supplemental materials:

  • Artist resume and/or artist bio must demonstrate that you qualify as a working artist with an independent body of work by listing:
    • Past exhibitions
    • Performances
    • Film screenings
    • Publications
    • Readings
  • Up to 5 artistic work samples (images, videos, or audio) AND/OR a link to a website showing artistic work samples
  • For Travel Requests: Documentation (confirmation email, conference site, etc.) that detail the dates of attendance and expectations of the invited artist

NOTE: Websites or work samples must include and independent body of work created by you that is your own artistic expression. Strictly commercial artistic work, such as portrait/event photography, graphic design for businesses, film/music production for businesses/other artists does NOT qualify.

After Submitting – Reviews & Scoring

Review, evaluation and selection

Funds for Artists applications are reviewed by GCAC staff for eligibility and completeness and accepted by the Board of Trustees. They are non-competitive and are not scored. The applications are evaluated to determine artist and expense eligibility and reviewed for accuracy and completeness.


Approvals are based on reviews and available funding. Applicants will be notified by email of the application status within 30after application is submitted. You are responsible for keeping your contact information up-to-date in the online application system.

After Awarded – Contracts, Payments, Reporting

Grant Agreement

Following the approval of a grant, a grant agreement specifying the terms of the grant will be available in the online application portal by clicking the “Contracts to Complete” button. To accept the award, review the grant agreement and digitally sign by the date indicated. You will be required to provide proof of residency in order to receive funding. No changes in the proposed expenses can occur without prior written approval from GCAC – send an email to if you need to request a change in spending or activities.

Payments and Spending the Funds

Grantees will receive 100% of their grant following the receipt of a digitally signed Grant Agreement.

All payments will be issues through ACH Direct Deposit unless otherwise requested.

Banking information is collected (or updated with changes) as part of the grant agreement and is stored securely. You have up to nine months to spend the funds.

Final Reports & Receipts

Starting in 2024, you will no longer be required to submit receipts as part of your final report. However, you will be required to share in detail what you used the grant funds for and if any changes were made from the original request.

You will not be eligible to apply for a new grant until you complete any past Final Report. To complete your Final Report, login to the online application system, and click on “Reports to Complete.”

Extensions may be requested in writing before the Final Report due date. Overdue or failure to submit final complete reports may affect eligibility and impact grant awards in future applications.

Publicity Requirements

Publicity/Donor Acknowledgement

Once you are awarded, say “Thanks!” in a public way. GCAC requires that all organizations and artists receiving funding demonstrate the public value of the arts by making others aware of awards received and acknowledging public funders. Funds for Artists grantees should use the channels available to them, such as social media, newsletters and press releases to recognize their support from GCAC. Refer to APPENDIX A for more details of the contractual publicity requirements.

Returning Artist Fast Pass

RETURNING ARTIST FAST PASS: Returning artists who have been awarded within the past 3 years AND have submitted and received approval for all past final reports are eligible for the Fast Pass application. Fast Pass eliminates the need for returning applicants to prove they are a working artist by uploading a resume and examples of their work. This small step will reduce the application process by over 50%. The Fast Pass will only require your expense budget (including proof of confirmation for travel opportunities), requested award amount and the certification of eligibility requirements.