Arts & Culture

Chatham Arts Council: Two New Grant Opportunities for Artists

In the midst of an economy turned upside down by a pandemic, supporting artists is more important than ever. That’s why the Chatham Arts Council is excited to announce the availability of applications for two separate grants to support artists practicing any art form via Artist Support Grants and the Emerging Artists Grants program. In partnership with the North Carolina Arts Council, Raleigh Arts, and other local arts councils, the Chatham Arts Council (CAC) is encouraging Chatham County artists to apply for the Artist Support Grants to support a range of professional and artistic development for emerging and established artists. Similarly, the Emerging Artists Grants program, in partnership with the Durham Arts Council, is intended to support artists by funding a project pivotal to the advancement of their artistic careers.

“It feels pretty great to be able to offer two grant opportunities for individual artists this year,” noted Cheryl Chamblee, Executive Director of the CAC. “This pandemic is affecting artists’ solvency, and their ability to do the kind of creative work that sustains us all. These grant funds can help.”


The Artist Support Grants program is open to ALL artists living in Chatham, Harnett, Johnston, Lee, and Wake counties. Both individual artists and small, unincorporated groups of collaborating artists are eligible to apply to support the creation of work, improvement of business operations, or expanding capacity to bring work to new audiences.

Criteria include:

  • Overall excellence of the applicant’s artwork as demonstrated by work samples;
  • Feasibility of the proposed project; and
  • Contribution of the proposed project to the advancement of the applicant’s professional artistic development and practice.

More than $82,000 in grants will be distributed among five counties in this region to deserving applicants. Individual grants will range in awards up to $1,500. Funding opportunities for individual artists are rare—particularly in the performing arts – so this prospect is unique. Applications for the Artist Support Grants are available on the Chatham Art Council website at The deadline is Thursday, Oct. 1.

“The Artist Support Grants program responds to the impact of the pandemic by ensuring that artists and the state’s arts infrastructure have the resources needed to help our state make a strong social and economic recovery,” said Wayne Martin, Executive Director of the North Carolina Arts Council.


The Emerging Artists Grant program provides financial support to developing or established professionals by funding a project pivotal to the advancement of their careers as artists. Pivotal projects may happen at different stages of a career; therefore, Emerging Artists Grants are not restricted to unestablished artists.

Unlike the Artist Support Grants program, applicants for the Emerging Artists Grants must be individuals, not ensembles or groups. Artists practicing any art form are eligible to apply for a grant up to $1,500. Applicants must have resided in Chatham, Durham, Granville, Orange, or Person Counties for at least one year immediately prior to the application deadline. In addition, applicants must be at least 18 years old and cannot be currently enrolled in a degree or certificate program in their art form at the time of the application deadline.

“At a time when so many artists are challenged to create new work and pioneer ways to reach their audiences, support from the Emerging Artists program is more important than ever,” explained Margaret DeMott, Director of Artist Services at the Durham Arts Council. “We are so grateful to the donors who partner with the Durham Arts Council to make this funding available.”

Criteria include:

  • Overall excellence of the applicant’s art work and demonstration of exceptional talent;
  • The applicant’s serious professional commitment to her/his art form;
  • Contribution of the proposed project to the artist’s professional development; and
  • Feasibility of the proposed project.

Applications for the Emerging Artists Grants are available on the Chatham Art Council website at The deadline is Friday, Nov. 13.

There will be a virtual workshop session TBA for those who would like assistance in filling out an application. Artists interested in participating should email Jenni Detwiler, CAC Grants to Artists Facilitator, at to receive log-in information for the session.

If you are interested in learning more about artist grant opportunities from the Chatham Arts Council, contact April Starling, marketing/public relations leader of the Chatham Arts Council, via email at or by phone at 917-544-0608.