22 Oct 2021
An overview of the latest Arts Grants results, including a link to who got funded. Find out what the strongest applications included, both generally (ie across all artforms and applications) and artform-specific.
About Arts Grants
Arts Grants offer short-term project funding for New Zealand artists, arts practitioners and arts organisations (including groups and collectives). This funding enables more sustainable careers, encourages innovation and the development of arts practice, and provides opportunities for diverse communities to access the arts.
Results of the latest round (round 2)
We increased the budget for this round by $1.2 million, drawing on the $5 million we were allocated in September from the Government’s COVID-19 Delta Relief Funding. This allowed us to support an additional 28 projects.
We received 200 eligible applications, with a total of $7,727,335 requested.
This was broken down as follows:
- General Arts: 56 projects totalling $2,269,121 were supported. $5,644,610 was requested by 162 applicants.
- Ngā toi Māori: 13 projects totalling $761,039 were supported. $1,000,309 was requested by 19 applicants.
- Pacific Arts: 12 projects totalling $679,732 were supported. $1,082,416 was requested by 19 applicants.
- 35 of the funded projects supported the development of arts practice and the creation of new work.
- 19 supported projects enabling New Zealanders to participate in the arts.
- 17 supported projects enabling New Zealanders to experience high-quality arts.
- 4 supported New Zealand arts to gain international success.
- 6 supported building the resilience of the New Zealand arts sector.
See who got funded in Arts Grant Round 2 – this includes artform and regional breakdowns.
There were some common features in the strongest applications for this round. These comments apply to all artforms and applications for Arts Grants round 2.
In this Arts Grants round, the strongest applications tended to include:
- strong COVID-19 contingency planning (clear descriptions of alert level change impacts)
- clearly expressed ideas and timelines
- projects that considered accessibility through multi-platform delivery and/or that had a long life and delivered high public value
- fair remuneration for all contributors
- clarity about the gap the project fills in the current arts and culture landscape
- clearly expressed project aims
- evidence not only of the artist’s ability, but of a team with the skills to deliver the project
- detailed information about the people involved in the People section of the application
- letters of intent/confirmation from all project participants in the People section of the application
- support material that didn’t assume too much background knowledge from the assessors about the applicant, the applicants’ values and ways of working
- clear examples of how their arts practice was to be developed by doing the project
- concise support material directly relevant to the project
- a detailed description of:
- the proposed project and its goals
- a strong project plan and how it would be carried out
- clear and achievable timeframes.
- letters of support that were recent, relevant and specific to the application rather than generic letters
- thorough and accurate budgets, using the Creative New Zealand templates, that clearly show:
- fair and appropriate remuneration/payment for both artists and practitioners
- realistic revenue forecasting
- how any funding gaps will be funded with evidence of support from relevant parties.
General feedback for emerging artists and practitioners
- Assessors want to understand your voice as a practitioner, as well as your practice. Think about that when drafting your application.
- Many emerging practitioners enlist the assistance of established artists to support them in the development of work or their practice. It’s useful to understand why you have chosen your mentor, how they will help you and what this process will look like.
General feedback for established artists and practitioners
- When applying for the development and presentation of new work, assessors are interested in how this work fits in your future or previous body of work. How will this challenge, expand or deepen your practice? How does this manifest in workshops or rehearsals (if appropriate)? What is the feedback process to continue refining your practice?
- If your project includes emerging performers, what is the process you have put in place to help them develop as practitioners?
Additional artform-specific comments
Further to the comments above, which apply to all applications in this round, there were strengths for some specific artforms. Not every round will have commentary for all artforms, and trends relating to specific artforms may vary between rounds. This is because each Arts Grants round receives a different range of applications. These are the artform-specific comments for Arts Grants round 2.
For Literature, the strongest applications also:
- included evidence of publisher interest and letters of support from highly regarded literary experts
- included high quality, relevant writing samples as well an outline of the overall book project
- demonstrated relevance to target communities and how the applicant intended to improve on work in previous years.
For Community Arts, the strongest applications also:
- clearly outlined the community that would be involved – what they want from this creative project, how they had been consulted and/or would be involved in shaping and delivering the project and what their artistic experience would be
- focused on the arts outcomes that the project would deliver and were clear about the artistic quality of the project and how it would deliver these outcomes
- showed a strong understanding of best practice in working with communities (see Community Arts Toolkit tip sheets on what makes a strong community arts project).