Design for a Mesa prototyping festival funded by an NEA grant.EXPAND
Design for a Mesa prototyping festival funded by an NEA grant.
David Crummey

12 Arizona Arts Organizations Win National Endowment for the Arts Grants

The National Endowment for the Arts recently awarded grants to 12 Arizona arts organizations. Six of the organizations are based in metro Phoenix.

The NEA is an independent federal agency established by Congress in 1965 to give Americans the opportunity to participate in the arts.

The grants are part of the NEA’s second round of funding for fiscal year 2018, which includes 1,071 grants totaling $80.5 million. The first round, in February 2018, included $25 million in grants.

In this cycle, the Arizona grants total more than $1.2 million. That’s similar to the total awarded last year, during the same grant cycle.

The largest grant went to Arizona Commission on the Arts, a state agency and NEA partner that works to increase access to the arts for all Arizonans. The agency will receive $830,000 for various art programs, services, and activities. That’s a slight increase over last year’s $821,600.

Ballet Under the Stars is supported by an NEA grant.
Ballet Under the Stars is supported by an NEA grant.
Ballet Arizona

The city of Phoenix received a $100,000 grant on behalf of the city’s housing department. It’s being used to support a public-art master plan and community-arts programming in the Edison-Eastlake neighborhood, which is located slightly east of downtown.

The city received another $50,000 on behalf of the Phoenix Office of Arts & Culture. Those funds will help support a grant program called Phoenix Neighborhood Arts, which focuses on collaborative, art-based projects involving children and teens. Last year, the NEA awarded $30,000 for that program.

The city will be accepting applications for Phoenix Neighborhood Arts grants online through Thursday, May 31. Grants range from $1,000 to $3,500 each, and they’ll be awarded in July.

Phoenix-based Ballet Arizona received a $30,000 grant for its Ballet Under the Stars series, which is $10,000 more than their 2017 grant for the same program. Arizona Opera received $20,000 towards Silent Night, which is part of the company’s 2018/19 season.

The NEA awarded $75,000 to the city of Mesa for Mesa Arts Center, which will use the funds for artist residencies and design prototypes benefiting low-income portions of downtown.

Finale, Valeska Soares, 2013. Antique table, 151 antique glasses, 5 pitchers, 3 decanters, liquor and mirror. The Ella Fontanals-Cisneros Collection, Miami.EXPAND
Finale, Valeska Soares, 2013. Antique table, 151 antique glasses, 5 pitchers, 3 decanters, liquor and mirror. The Ella Fontanals-Cisneros Collection, Miami.
Oriol Tarridas

Five Tucson organizations received NEA grants, as well.

The NEA awarded $45,000 to the University of Arizona for artist residencies, and $15,000 each to Western Jazz Presenters Network and Lead Guitar.

Southwest Folklife Alliance (a.k.a. Tucson Meet Yourself) received two NEA grants — a $40,000 grant for resources including an e-publication and apprentice program, and $35,000 for a community festival.

The Grand Canyon Chamber Music Festival (a.k.a. the Grand Canyon Music Festival) will get a $20,000 grant to support its Native American Composer Apprentice Project, which has been training Native youth in music composition since 2001.

If you’re eager to experience metro Phoenix programs made possible by NEA grants, start by heading to Phoenix Art Museum.

Last spring, the museum received a $45,000 NEA grant to support the "Valeska Soares: Any Moment Now" exhibition that continues through Sunday, July 15.

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