Project Grant

Grant applications (for FY2020) open Monday, December 16, 2019. The application deadline is March 1. The Applican Portal includes several resources to assist applicants. Visit the portal here

To apply visit

Project Grants assist individual artists in the presentation of a specific project or activity that serves the public and meets specific needs of the applicant artist. The funding category is designed to:

  • Recognize talented artists in any arts discipline. 
  • Encourage the creative achievement of South Dakota artists.
  • Encourage artists to plan and implement projects that benefit the public.
  • Encourage artists to collaborate with community organizations.

Artists in any discipline may apply. Applicants must be residents of South Dakota for at least one year prior to the designated grant period (fiscal year July 1 – June 30) and remain residents throughout the project period within the designated grant period. Artists may apply for only one of the following grants per fiscal year: Artist Fellowship, Artist Collaboration Grant, Artist Project Grant, Artists Career Development Grant, or Traditional Arts Apprenticeship Grant.

Funding will not be granted for academic research or formal study toward an academic or professional degree.

Students pursuing high school diplomas and graduate or undergraduate degrees are not eligible.


  • Funding will not be granted for academic research or formal study toward an academic or professional degree.
  • Students pursuing high school diplomas or graduate or undergraduate degrees are not eligible.
  • South Dakota Arts Council board members, staff, and grant review panelists are not eligible to apply for Artist Grants.
  • Artist Fellowship and Artist Collaboration recipients may not apply for a project grant for three consecutive fiscal years following the completion of the grant period.
  • Artists and organizations may not seek SDAC funds for the same project.  

Applications must be submitted on-line by March 1. Applicants may start to apply on December 1. Grant awards will be announced in May for the fiscal year starting July 1.

Grant Amount

Project Grants will be awarded to talented South Dakota artists to fund specific arts-related activities that incorporate the applicant’s artistry with a project benefiting the public. Artists may request $1,000 to $2,000 but no more than 50% of the total project costs. Since SDAC funds must be cash matched (in dollars), it is strongly encouraged that artists partner with a community organization(s) that may assist in providing that cash match (in dollars). The number of Artist Project Grants awarded each year will be left to the discretion of the South Dakota Arts Council, based on the Council’s budget and the quality of applications. 

Criteria for Awarding Grants
In reviewing applications, panelists consider the following:

  • Quality of the applicant’s work as demonstrated by artistic documentation submitted.

Application Review
Artistic quality plays a critical role in panel ratings and funding recommendations. Special care should be taken to provide supplemental materials that document the applicant’s artistic quality as well as the potential artistic quality of the project itself.

  • Record of the artist’s professional activity and artistic achievement.           
  • A detailed description of the proposed project and the artist’s intended use of grant funds.
  • How the applicant’s artistic skills will be incorporated into the project.
  • How the project will benefit the public.

Bonus points will be given to applications that reveal:

  • Especially innovative or creative projects.
  • Involvement of disabled, minority, geographically isolated or new constituencies as specifically addressed in the narrative.
  • Inclusion or development of advocacy, visibility, or public awareness of the arts as specifically addressed in the narrative.
  • Specific plans for enhancing K-12 arts education.

Application Procedure

How to Prepare and Submit an Application

Applications for a Project Grant must be submitted on line through the South Dakota Arts Council’s e-grant system on or before March 1. Hard-copy applications submitted through the mail will not be accepted.When you log into the e-grant system, you will be asked to complete some on line forms and attach several different supporting documents as Word of PDF files. Although you can work back and forth from the e-grant system to the documents, you may find it more expedient to prepare the following documents ahead of time and have them ready to attach.

1. A grant narrative of no more than 4 pages.

• Introduce the narrative by providing a description of the project for which you are requesting funds. The description should help grant review panelists visualize what will occur during the project period. Assume that the panelists know NOTHING about you, your organization or your proposed project. Be as specific as necessary to give panelists a good understanding of what you propose.
• Following the project description, explain how the proposed project will make a positive impact on the arts and/or quality of life in your community or region by restating and answering each of the following questions:

 What are the identified needs that this project addresses?
 What are the outcomes the project is expected to achieve?
 How will SDAC grant funds be used to support the project?
 How will the success of the project be evaluated?

• Following your answers to these questions, provide explanations of any items on the budget page that the review panel may find unclear. (For example, if you budget $500 for travel, explain what the travel entails and how you calculated the amount. If you budget $600 dollars for marketing, how will this money be used?)

2. Biographies or resumes of key administrative and artistic personnel
3. Documentation that attests to the artistic quality of the proposed project. (Types of artistic documentation MAY include, but are not limited to, DVDs of performances, digital images of artists represented in visual art exhibitions, biographies or resumes of performing artists, etc. Instructions for attaching written documents, digital images, and audio clips are included in the e-grant instructions.)
4. Additional supporting materials (optional), i.e. programs, brochures, posters, reviews, letters of recommendation, etc.

When you log onto the e-grant system you will be asked to:

  • Complete an Applicant Profile
  • Complete an Applicant Information form
  • Complete Project Summary & Information form
  • Create and upload (attach) a narrative that explains the project in detail.
  • Complete a pre-existing budget form outlining all project expenses.
  • Create and upload (attach) a professional resume.
  • Upload (attach) examples of artistic documentation. Specific instructions are available when you log onto the e-grant system.
  • Scan and upload (attach) or mail supporting print materials, i.e. reviews, letters of recommendation, etc.
  • Complete Signature Page
  • Electronically submit application
  • Mail Signature Page to SDAC

Specific instructions for completing and submitting the above information will be provided after you log into the e-grant system ( and complete the Applicant Profile.

Grant Evaluation Form.  Evaluations are due no later than 30 days after the end of the fiscal year. An evaluation form will be provided with grant award materials. It is also available on SDAC’s website:
Subsequent grants are dependent upon receipt of complete evaluation reports.