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THE GRANT

More Than Money

The NOT REAL ART Grant for Artists is a $12,000 annual award designed to empower the practice of emerging contemporary artists. Launched in 2019,  we don't just give our grant winners money and say goodbye. NOT REAL ART Grant winners get a platform and community to tell their stories and promote their work. We feature our winners on our podcast, we interview them and create feature articles about them on our blog. And, we curate an art exhibition featuring their art work.


Albert Willis - Artwork 4

Daniela Garcia - Artwork 5

Albert Willis - Artwork 3

Carmen Mardonez

John Chang - Artwork 2 2

Carmen Mardonez - Artwork 4

Daniela Garcia - Artwork 4

Carmen Mardonez - Artwork 3

Carmen Mardonez - Artwork 1

Albert Willis - Artwork 2

John Chang - Artwork 3

Carmen Mardonez

John Chang - Artwork 4

Daniela Garcia - Artwork 1

John Chang - Artwork 2

Daniela Garcia - Artwork 3

Daniela Garcia - Artwork 2

John Chang - Artwork 3 2

John Chang - Artwork 5

Nadyia Duff - Artwork 2

Nadyia Duff - Artwork 3

Nadyia Duff - Artwork 4

Nadyia Duff - Artwork 5

Nadyia Duff - Artwork 6

Natalia Villanueva - Artwork 1

Natalia Villanueva - Artwork 2

Natalia Villanueva - Artwork 3

Natalia Villanueva - Artwork 5


About Our Judges

Our esteemed panel of judges in 2021 each share deep professional experience in the contemporary arts. These ten judges bring unique, eclectic points-of-view to the serious work of evaluating our hundreds of grant applicants.


Learn More About Our
Previous Grant Winners 

NOT REAL ART Announces Its 2020 Grant Recipients: 

It’s the kind of news everyone wants to receive at least once in their life – getting the news “you won!”. Today, six visual artists are about to get such positive news as they read this piece to learn they are the recipients of the 2020 NOT REAL ART Grant.

NOT REAL ART aspires to honor artists invaluable contributions to human culture by empowering their careers in meaningful, thoughtful and relevant ways. As an organization, NOT REAL ART exists to celebrate and elevate creative culture by empowering artists, helping artists tell their stories and promote their art.

Our 2019
Grant Recipients


  • Tayla Coviello
  • Marguerite Kalhor
  • Beth Abaravich
  • Edmund Arevalo
  • Juliana Bustillo
  • Karen Fiorito
  • Jessie Noguchi
  • Rachel O’Donnell
  • Maria Belseiro
  • Eben Eldridge
  • Monica Leal Cueva
  • Anthony Louis-Just

Past Articles

Call For Artists: Apply Now for the 2021 NOT REAL ART Artist Grant. Don’t Miss Out. Deadline May 1, 2021!

The NOT REAL ART Artist Grant is a $12,000 annual award designed to empower the careers of 6 contemporary artists, each of whom receive $2,000 — with no strings attached.

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Call For Artists: Apply Now for the 2021 NOT REAL ART Artist Grant. Don’t Miss Out. Deadline May 1, 2021!

NOT REAL ART Honors Its 2020 Class of Artist Grantees With an Exclusive Online Exhibition: 7pm October 8: Join Us!

Join us October 8th at 7pm as we celebrate our 2020 Not Real Art Class of Artist Grant recipients with online exhibition online and public art video installation

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NOT REAL ART Honors Its 2020 Class of Artist Grantees With an Exclusive Online Exhibition: 7pm October 8: Join Us!

Tijera Williams: Artist + 2020 Not Real Art Grant Recipient

When this interview took place in April, George Floyd was still breathing. The nation and world-at-large were fighting the deadly Coronavirus and adjusting to the subsequent shelter-in-place order, and artist, Tijera Williams, had just found out she’d won the Not Real Art grant.

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Tijera Williams: Artist + 2020 Not Real Art Grant Recipient

Miki Yokoyama: Artist + 2020 Not Real Art Grant Recipient

Artist and Not Real Art grant winner, Miki Yokoyama was born in Fukushima, Japan. While she definitely remembers the infamous Daiichi nuclear disaster of 2011, Yokoyama was already living in the U.S. at the time and speaks of a childhood spent in the countryside, surrounded by forest…

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Miki Yokoyama: Artist + 2020 Not Real Art Grant Recipient

Rachel O’Donnell: 2019 Grant Winner

Rachel O’Donnell was born in Dallas, TX and attended a performing arts school where she studied ballet and contemporary dance. “That’s kind of where I thought my creative path was going. Then I ended up taking art classes and really enjoyed it. I had a teacher who said I should pursue this on a professional level.”

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Rachel O’Donnell: 2019 Grant Winner

Jessie Noguchi: 2019 Grant Winner

It was early morning in Japan when Jessie Noguchi called in for the interview. She was visiting her family there, following the loss of her grandmother who deeply influenced her life and her art. “My grandmother had an eye for art and she knew what she liked. It always came from her soul and not because the painter was famous or anything like that. In February 2018, before my grandmother passed away, she requested that I do something to express myself to the world because she knew that I am the kind of person who is still dreaming of things I want to do. So I started posting Instagram photos and also digital paintings and paintings on canvas.”

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Jessie Noguchi: 2019 Grant Winner

Thony Loui: 2019 Grant Winner

Thony Loui was born and raised in Haiti and always knew he would be an artist. “I loved art, but I didn’t get serious until I was in high school when I made a logo for a famous local band.” This brush with fame wouldn’t be Loui’s last. In 2018, he was commissioned by Conan O’Brien to paint Conan’s portrait on the back of one of Haiti’s tap-tap buses. “He gave me 24 hours to do the painting on the tap-tap bus, which I did!”

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Thony Loui: 2019 Grant Winner

Monica Leal Cueva: 2019 Grant Winner

Monica Leal Cueva was born in Mexico City and grew up in Monterrey, Mexico. After relocating to Los Angeles twelve years ago, she found it challenging to adapt and suffered bouts of anxiety and depression. Sometimes, her anxiety was such that she couldn’t do everyday tasks like go to the grocery store. Taking art classes and working at an art studio “changed everything,” shared Leal Cueva.

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Monica Leal Cueva: 2019 Grant Winner

Marguerite Kalhor: 2019 Grant Winner

Marguerite Kalhor grew up in Roseville, CA, a small suburban town outside of Sacramento, complete with rural farmland, tract homes, and a mall. In high school, Kalhor was considered weird for making art. When Kalhor learned that she had won the Not Real Art grant, she was “stoked.”

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Marguerite Kalhor: 2019 Grant Winner

Karen Fiorito: 2019 Grant Winner

Karen Fiorito is no stranger to being different and in full view. Her controversial ‘Trumpocalypse’ billboard in downtown Phoenix gained international media attention. In high school, she was bullied for standing out. “I was kind of punk rock. Kids would pick on me because I was different and looked different.”

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Karen Fiorito: 2019 Grant Winner

Eben Eldridge: 2019 Grant Winner

Eben Eldridge is a painter, a musician, and a preschool teacher who says his duty to the kids is to teach them the basics, the “straight-up, social-emotional reality.”

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Eben Eldridge: 2019 Grant Winner

Maria Delvs: 2019 Grant Winner

Maria Delvs is a newcomer to L.A., but certainly not to the art scene. The daughter of an oil painter, Delvs’ first memories as an artist began in her childhood home in Miami, Florida. She says, “The best thing about being an artist is channeling myself through my hands. You can’t buy that. You can’t make that. Nobody can take that from you. No matter what you have or don’t have financially, you always have that.”

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Maria Delvs: 2019 Grant Winner

Questions?

  • The Grant Application process is simple, you submit your contact details, a brief bio, your artist statement and pictures or graphics of up to 5 pieces you wish to submit for consideration.
  • We suggest you get all of your materials and images ready before filing your application using the online form. Click on the "SUBMIT YOUR 2021 GRANT APPLICATION" button or link to get started. 
  • We will be in touch to confirm receipt of your application.

Apply Here:

Click the button below to apply for the 2021 Grant. We’ll post important additional details and updates about the grant in January 2021.

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