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Emergency Grants

In keeping with FCA's mission to encourage, sponsor, and promote work of a contemporary, experimental nature, applicants must demonstrate that their artistic practice falls within this context. Created in 1993, Emergency Grants provides prompt funding for innovative visual and performing artists who:

  • Have unanticipated, sudden opportunities to present their work to the public when there is insufficient time to seek other sources of funding
  • Incur unexpected or unbudgeted expenses for projects close to completion with committed exhibition or performance dates

Emergency Grants is the only active, multi-disciplinary program that offers immediate assistance of this kind to artists living and working anywhere in the United States or U.S. territories, for projects occurring in the U.S. and abroad. Grants range in amount from $200 to $2,500.

For information on current Emergency Grantees please follow FCA on Facebook and Instagram.

Note: There is no longer a two-time cap on the number of Emergency Grants one may receive in their lifetime.

Eligibility requirements:

  • Applicants must be living in the United States or U.S. territories and have a U.S. Tax ID Number (SSN, EIN, ITIN)
  • Applicants must have committed performance or exhibition opportunities, providing specific dates at the time of application.
  • Applicants must be individual artists, or an individual representing an artist collective, ensemble, or group. Curators, producers, workshop organizers, organizations, or arts presenters are not eligible to apply.
  • Applicants should not request more funding than needed
  • Students (high school, undergraduate, graduate, Ph.D., doctoral candidates, and other students enrolled in any degree program at the time of application) are not eligible to apply.
  • Successful applicants to the Emergency Grants program may not reapply for three years from the date of their past award.
  • Similarly, Grants to Artists recipients may not apply for three years from the date of their award.
  • Applicants may not reapply for a project for which they have previously been denied.
  • To confirm that your application meets program guidelines, please review our Emergency Grants F.A.Q.s.

The following are NOT within Emergency Grants's scope of support:

  • Life-related emergencies such as food, rent, medical bills, childcare, and other basic necessities
  • Reimbursement for expenses that you have already incurred
  • Projects with no scheduled exhibition or performance dates
  • Fees for participation in a residency program, or other educational and artistic development opportunities. Review our Emergency Grants F.A.Q.s for residency-related questions.
  • Deposits and registration fees for participation in an exhibition, fair, or other presentation opportunity
  • Youth or educational programming
  • Requests to attend or organize professional training, workshops, lectures, symposiums, conferences, or competitions
  • Production of CDs, albums, or music videos

When to Apply:

Emergency Grant applications are reviewed mid-month, every month by a volunteer committee of established artists. We recommend applying within 6-8 weeks of your performance or exhibition date. You should apply no sooner than 8 weeks prior to when funding is needed, due to the program's last-minute focus.

If you require funding in six-eight weeks, you may submit an Emergency Grants application without timeline confirmation.

If you require funding in less than six weeks, you may optionally contact FCA before submitting for confirmation that your timeline falls within a month's grants cycle.

If you require funding in less than two weeks, please contact FCA prior to applying to confirm we are able to consider your application in the upcoming panel meeting.

Please review all program guidelines before emailing. In the subject line, please write "Emergency Grants Project Timeline Inquiry." Timeline inquiries should be sent before, not after, submitting an application. To help us assess your application eligibility, you must include: a complete project timeline, confirmed exhibition or performance dates, and the date by which you require funding to proceed with your project in an email to grants@contemporary-arts.org.

How to Apply:

Emergency Grants applications are only accepted through an online form. Apply for an Emergency Grant.

If you have difficulty with internet access, please call or email the Foundation for a hard-copy application.

Notification:

Receipt of your application will be acknowledged via email. Please be aware that communication from FCA may unintentionally go to your Spam folder. Please do not contact FCA about the status of your application, since all applicants will receive notification of the panel's decision following the mid-month panel meeting. Grant checks are mailed to awardees the same week.

DUE TO OUR SMALL STAFF AND THE OVERWHELMING NUMBER OF INCOMING REQUESTS, NO PHONE INQUIRIES PLEASE. THANK YOU.

Emergency Grants are supported by generous grants from: Amphion Foundation, Milton and Sally Avery Arts Foundation, Lawrence B. Benenson, The Aaron Copland Fund for Music, The Cowles Charitable Trust, New York City Council District 33/Council Member Stephen Levin, Mertz Gilmore Foundation, The Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation, The Shelley & Donald Rubin Foundation, Louise Stude Sarofim/The Brown Foundation Inc., Thanksgiving Fund, and Trust for Mutual Understanding. This program is also supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, in partnership with the City Council.