Call For Artists: Apply to the 2024 NOT REAL ART Grant Now
Our mission at NOT REAL ART has always been to support the creative community in many ways. Founded in 2019, the grant is one of our flagship programs and a true cornerstone of our work in the creative industry. Once again, we are delighted to offer financial backing to six self-driven artists with a no-strings-attached award package of $2,000.
Applications for the 2024 NOT REAL ART grant are open to artists 21+ working in any 2D medium. Applicants must live and work in the United States and may not apply if they are a previous recipient of the NOT REAL ART grant. Please note: in prior years, we accepted 3D work; due to changing circumstances, we are only accepting 2D works during our 2024 grant cycle. Additionally, our formerly annual grant now occurs every two years.
Along with financial support, each winner receives publicity, including an interview on our podcast and a full-length feature published on NOT REAL ART. “The money is great, but the grant is also about audience and promotion,” says Scott “Sourdough” Power, NOT REAL ART’s founder and publisher. “We want to give artists a platform for their work, let them tell their stories, and make them feel seen.” We welcome impactful ideas from marginalized communities, underrepresented voices, and work that operates outside the standard gallery or museum system. The grant will remain open until midnight (PST) on January 1, 2024.
Applications will be reviewed by a panel of judges who are experts in their fields in the visual arts. Judges for the 2024 NOT REAL ART grant cycle include graffiti wunderkind Man One, arts writer Morgan Laurens, and intellectual property rights lawyer Joshua Wattles, among others.
Scroll down to see work from our past grant winners, read our advice for submitting, then apply to the 2024 NOT REAL ART grant here.
Preparing to submit
We recommend that artists prepare their materials before submitting. Artists are required to submit an artist statement and bio along with three – five non-collaborative works of their choice. Submissions that do not follow the provided guidelines will be automatically disqualified; please read thoroughly before submitting your materials. The application also includes a written portion with six questions that will help the judges contextualize your work and practice.
Writing your bio and artist statement
Your artist bio and statement will help the judges contextualize your work and get to know you as an individual. Generally speaking, a bio is written in third person and gives a brief overview of your career. Consider including details about medium, motif, education, location, and accolades, but avoid listing your entire CV. A bio should include only the highlights of your resume plus extra information about your work and life experiences.
Typically written in the first person, an artist statement is more personal than a bio. How an artist writes about their work is largely up to them, and may change based on their style, medium, or method of expression. For example, artists who make unusual work may focus more on process to help readers understand how they make their work. Artists who work with well-known mediums and methods may choose to write about their influences, inspirations, and personal philosophies.
Submitting your work
Artists must submit three to five images to qualify for the 2024 NOT REAL ART grant. These images can come from the same body of work to show depth and complexity, or from across a variety of mediums, styles, or bodies of work to demonstrate range. All submitted works should be professionally shot: in focus, cropped, and evenly lit. “I understand that it's an investment to get your artwork professionally shot,” says Cheyanne Sauter, a grant writer and panelist from our 2022 grant cycle. “But it is so helpful when we have so little to vote on.”
Answering the questions
Most grants include a question section that offers judges context outside an artist’s visual work. Although the written portion is secondary to the quality of the artist’s work, it does factor into our judges’ decision-making process, and should not be taken lightly. Longer answers aren’t necessarily better; consider how you might tell your story in a brief but powerful way. Your goal is to answer the given question without distracting the reader from your work. Make sure to answer the question specifically and tailor your answer to the specific grant. Do some preliminary research into the organization offering the grant; this will help you tailor your responses to their goals and overarching mission.
Apply to the 2024 NOT REAL ART grant here.