Project Grants for Individuals provide funding to support ideas and projects organized by or for artists in Mississippi. These grants are given to individuals to support innovation, to propel artist’s careers and to encourage collaboration between artists and communities.

Mississippi artists may find themselves thinking about their work in ways that go beyond simply creating art or honing their craft. These artists may find themselves with ideas they want to see come to fruition in different ways and are looking for potential funding sources to help make them a reality. MAC supports these efforts through its Individual Project Grant program, which funds a wide range of arts projects organized by individual artists.  

Individual Project Grants award up to $2,000 to individuals to support their project ideas. No cash match is required, however additional outside sources of funded are allowable to supplement the success of the Individual Project.

Application Deadline: March 2 EXTENDED to March 9, 2020

Please note: With the implementation of our new eGRANT system, MAC will no longer accept paper applications. Instructions on how to register and utilize the eGRANT system are available here. Applications will be accepted beginning on January 15. To be considered for funding, applications must be submitted and authorized by 11:59 p.m. on March 2 March 9.

Activities supported by the grant must take place between July 1 of the current year and June 30 of the following year.

Before submitting an application, MAC recommends you thoroughly read the Frequently Asked Questions.

Please note: Individual Project grants are reported as income for the recipients. MAC is required to report the grants to the IRS. The Mississippi Department of Finance and Administration issues a 1099 tax form to each Individual Project Grant recipient.

Who May Apply

You may apply for an Individual Project Grant if you are a professional artist living in Mississippi or if you are an individual who is using the project to organize other professional artists in Mississippi. In addition the applicant must be:

  • more than 18 years of age;
  • not a full-time student; and
  • a permanent, legal resident of Mississippi at the time of application and throughout the grant period. Applicants may be required to show proof of residence (such as driver’s license, proof of domicile, homestead, utility bills).
  • Individual Project Grants award up to $2,000 to individuals to support their project ideas. No cash match is required, however additional outside sources of funded are allowable to supplement the success of the Individual Project.

Artist Genres and Project Grant Examples

Applicants may include artists in all fields including but not limited to: visual arts, performing arts, media and film, literary arts, design, folk and traditional arts. Applicants may also be non-artists working on a project to organize and elevate Mississippi artists.

Deadline to apply: March 9.

Examples of Individual Projects:

  • Readings
  • Concerts
  • Performances
  • Art Exhibits
  • Public art
  • Start-up Festival not already led by nonprofit or business
  • Dance performance
  • Photography project
  • Recording an album
  • Purchasing play rights
  • Support for art specific showings & performances:
    o  Space/Venue rental
    o  Event Insurance/Permits
    o  Marketing for Project
    o  Hiring Sound/Tech

Individual Project Grant funding CANNOT be used for:

  • Purchase of permanent equipment or software
  • Attending classes, travel, workshops (See MAC’s Mini Grant for these purposes)
  • No more than $500 can be used for applicant’s artist fee as part of project
  • Food or drink of any kind
  • To support part of an Organizational led project*
  • Fundraising, Prizes or Awards
  • Re-granting, capital projects or addressing debt
  • Activities for which academic credit is awarded
  • Religious activities
  • Private functions not open to the public
  • Travel

*Individuals and Organizations CANNOT apply for MAC funding for the same Project. Individuals who are STAFF of an eligible organization may apply for projects that are part of that organization’s programming. Individuals who are paid staff or proprietors of a for-profit organization/business cannot apply for funding for projects that are a product or service of that organization/business.

Review Criteria

Individual Project Grant applications are reviewed using the following criteria:

Individual Project Grant review panels use the following four components:

Project Merit: (40 points)

Project demonstrates at least one of the following:

  • Impact to the artist’s craft or body of work o Impact and contribution to the advancement of an artist’s discipline or field of study
  • Impact and relevance to a broader community (as defined by applicant) Examples include: general public, state, regional, local and neighborhood

Artistic Quality: (25 points)

  • Evidence of artistic excellence and the ability to provide quality experiences for audiences/participants
  • Project has relevance to the creative experience and/or cultural heritage of a community
  • Support materials are directly relevant to the application, of excellent quality, and present a high level of artistic product.

Ability to carry out Project: (25 points)

Project Planning and Management:

  • Project is well planned with realistic timing and achievable, measurable outcomes
  • Project includes a clear budget showing resources to support and complete the project
  • Application clearly states: What will be accomplished, where and when the project will take place, why the project should be supported with public funds
  • Support materials are provided that are directly relevant to the application, present a high level of artistic ability and support the individual’s ability to achieve project goals

Public Value (10 points) 

Project directly engages Mississippians in one or more of the following ways:

  • Creating opportunities for all Mississippi residents to participate in the arts
  • Encouraging access to and participation in the arts by under-resourced, under-represented, under-served and marginalized populations in Mississippi.
  • Projects that encourage growth for the artist, the community and/or building and growing partnership with and between artists and community organizations.

How To Apply

Apply online using MAC’s eGRANT system. Faxed, mailed, or emailed applications are not accepted. If you are new to eGRANT, please refer to MAC’s video guide on how to create an account. Please review the guides and video tutorials available on MAC’s Frequently Asked Questions page, then contact MAC staff if you have any questions.

Please be prepared to submit the following information through the eGRANT system:

    • Project Narrative, including Summary, Description and Location: You will provide a detailed description of your proposed project and, if applicable, the community it serves. This section will also address the Individual Project Grant review criteria
    • Budget and Budget Itemization: Applicants will submit a budget and itemization that paints a picture of the project planning and related costs. Applicants may not pay themselves a fee greater than $500. MAC awards up to $2,000 for Individual Project Grants (with no match required), however, applicants are allowed to show additional sources of revenue to support the project.
    • Project Partners: List any people, groups or entities that are involved with your project and the the nature of your collaboration. You will be asked to provide letters of support or intent from these partners.
    • Public Value: How will your project create a public value to Mississippi and its residents. You will be asked how you will create new opportunities for MS residents to participate in the arts in a new way or ways that the project encourages access to and participation in, the arts by under-resourced, under-represented, under-served and marginalized populations or how your project will encourage partnerships between the artist(s) and a partnering community or group.
    • Other materials may include, but are not limited to:
    o Plans, sketches or preliminary designs of the proposed project
    o Brochures, postcards, publicity or other sample materials to visually describe project intent
    o Quotes for services to be provided (sound, venue, marketing, etc.)
    Applications should be complete, including all required information and materials. Incomplete applications, defined as applications missing one or more of the above-listed documents, will not be considered for funding and will be returned to the applicant.

Supplementary Materials

Supplementary Materials

In addition to the above items, you should be prepared to submit supplementary materials through the eGRANT system that will help panelists understand your idea for your project. Supplementary materials should relate to the proposed project activities and should support the claims made in your narrative.
These materials may include:
• A list of any people, groups or entities that you plan to partner with for your project.
• Work samples that support evidence of artistic excellence with description of how work samples provided correlate to the proposed project
• Sample programs, brochures or other promotional materials that relate to the proposed project activities
• Plans, sketches or preliminary designs of the proposed project
• Letters of support or intent from key partners, members of the community or past participants
• Quotes for services to be provided (sound, venue, marketing)
Supplementary Materials File Types
Ineligible File Types: Items uploaded from the following file types will be disregarded in adjudicating applications and may result rejection of an application for incompletion:
• Pages (.pages)
• Numbers (.numbers)
• Keynote (.key)
Video & Audio
• If you share media from your website, link directly to the video/audio rather than the home page.
• MAC recommends applicants upload using the following file types: MP3, MOV, MP4, WMV, WMA.

Application Timeline

  • March 2  – Individual Project Grant application deadline
  • April  – Review of applications by the grant panel (the specific panel date will be available by late March.
  • June – MAC Board meets and makes final funding decisions on all applications
  • July 2 – Applicants are notified whether their application was funded or not. No information on the grants (including whether or not an applicant will be receiving an award or the amount of the award) will be available from MAC prior to this date.

GRANT PAYMENTS
Project Grants are paid in two installments:
• 75% of the grant award following receipt and approval of a properly signed contract
• 25% of the grant award following receipt and approval of the final report.

*Grant Payment will be made to one individual who is responsible for tax reporting. Applicants should not pay “themselves” more than 1/4th ($500) of the project total. All sub-contractors or artists paid for their services through an individual project grant should be considered independent contractors and issued a 1099 by the applicant for payment related to the MAC portion of the Individual Project Grant award.

PROGRAM DIRECTORS
For more information on applying for a Project Grant, contact the MAC Program Director who oversees the area most closely tied to your organization’s main goals:
Performing artists, Leslie Barker, 601.359.6529, lbarker@arts.ms.gov
Education related artists, Charlotte Smelser, 601.359.6037, csmelser@arts.ms.gov
Literary Artists or Unknown Genre: Kristen Brandt, 601.359.6030, kbrandt@arts.ms.gov
Folk & Traditional Arts, Maria Zeringue, 601.359.6034, mzeringue@arts.ms.gov
Visual Artists, Melody Moody Thortis, 601-359-6035, mthortis@arts.ms.gov
*Project Grants for Individuals is a new grant from MAC and future Individual Project Grants will be based on the success of the FY21 pilot program.