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We support efforts that connect people, ideas, and solutions through creativity. That includes our grantmaking initiatives, our community programming, and our awards celebrating Midwestern creativity.

Douglas Brooks leading a Japanese boat launching ceremony.
Photo Credit: Fred Zwicky

Past Grants + Programs

Arts Midwest’s 35+ year history spans geographic and cultural borders, artistic disciplines, and purpose. Learn more about our past grants and programs.

Explore Our History

Star Girl Clan, a project led by artists Magdalena Kaluza and Rebekah Crisanta de Ybarra. A person holds a paper frog puppet up to a large screen, cast in purple and green with projections of branches and leaves.
Photo Credit: Pierre Ware

Frequently Asked Questions


Learn more about each grant program and see if you’re eligible to apply by reviewing the application guidelines listed on these pages:

Once you’re ready to apply, we have a grants portal called SmartSimple where you’ll submit your application. We invite you to learn more about this portal.


Following the application guidelines and providing a lot of details about your plans are hallmarks of a good application. We can provide sample applications upon request.


At this time, Arts Midwest has two award programs for individuals, the Peter Capell Award for Midwestern Creativity and Entrepreneurship. This award supports one Midwestern arts leader per year. As well as, the Midwest Award for Artists with Disabilities, which awards one artist from each of the nine Midwest states per year.

Arts Midwest also promotes JazzRoad, a program run through South Arts, which provides touring and residency funds for jazz artists. Artists from Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, and Wisconsin should contact us with any questions related to your application or interest in a tour. Outside of the Midwest? Visit this page to learn more about who to speak with.

We encourage artists looking for direct support to contact their state arts agency for further information on possible funding opportunities available to them at the state level.


Most of our funding is made possible by the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency. As such, applicants and grantees must abide by federal eligibility requirements. Read more from the NEA about fiscal sponsorships here.


We are not currently accepting unsolicited proposals. Please sign up for our emails in the footer of our website to be notified when one of our grants or programs issues an open call.


We encourage artists and arts organizations to visit the Regional Arts Organization website for more information on grants for organizations outside of the Midwest, as well as national grant opportunities.

State Arts Agencies and the National Endowment for the Arts are also helpful resources for individuals and organizations looking for grant support for arts programs.


Questions about grants or programs?

If you’d like to talk to us we’re just an email or a phone call away. 

Contact Our Team