Tara Donovan, detail from Bluffs
2003 NYFA Fellow in Sculpture
The New York Foundation for the Arts' mission is to empower artists at critical stages in their creative lives.
How NYFA Serves Artists: Core Programs
NYFA gives artists the freedom to create and develop. Emphasizing the individual artist and the organizations that serve them, NYFA functions as an advocate and catalyst for the creative arts.
A grant from NYFA can offer artists the following. The precious gift of TIME to think and create. The SPACE to paint, write, rehearse or perform. The TOOLS OF THE TRADE necessary to realize a vision. The ability to TRAVEL for professional opportunities. VALIDATION. Beyond the material effect, a grant from NYFA reinforces artists’ belief in themselves and offers encouragement to continue to create.
NYFA has developed a wide range of core programs to address the needs of every kind of artist and accommodate a broad spectrum of donor interest. We’ve listed a few ways you can support artists and we’re always ready to hear new ideas that we can incorporate into our core programs.
Artist Debra Priestly at work in her studio.
NYFA is the largest grant distributor of unrestricted fellowships in the US, giving more than $1 million annually to some 130 artists throughout New York State. Disciplines supported by NYFA: Computer Arts, Crafts, Film, Nonfiction Literature, Poetry, Performance Art / Multidisciplinary Art, Printmaking / Drawing / Artists Books, Sculpture, Architecture / Environmental Structures, Choreography, Fiction, Music Composition, Painting, Photography, Video, and Playwriting / Screenwriting.
For a gift of $10,000, you may underwrite the cost of a single Artists’ Fellowship for one year in the discipline of your choice, with the option to name the Fellowship for yourself or others.
For a gift of $250,000 you may permanently endow an Artists' Fellowship. Such a gift may be made in installments over time, and the opportunity to name the Fellowship also applies.
NYFA’s Fiscal Sponsorship program is one of the oldest and largest of its kind in the United States. The program enables emerging organizations and artists’ projects, many of which have not yet attained tax-exempt status, to raise funds from individuals, corporate, foundation and government sources in support of their artistic endeavors. In addition to facilitating fundraising, the program also offers a variety of technical assistance and financial services for artists working in all disciplines statewide, nationally and internationally.
Building Up Infrastructure Levels for Dance (BUILD)
NYFA’s BUILD program is one of the few funding sources providing infrastructure support to emerging dance companies in the United States. The purpose of these grants is to increase capacity within these organizations by supporting administrative functions such as staffing, fundraising, marketing, consultants or equipment purchases.
As the Internet has connected the world, so too has it enabled artists, job seekers, administrators and the art curious to access the wealth of information available at www.artspire.org. Last year, more than 3.8 million users from all over New York, the nation and the world, logged on to NYFA’s website to take advantage of what has quickly become an indispensable tool for working artists and others in the cultural community.
The most popular sections of the site by far are the job listings and NYFA Source. NYFA Source is a searchable database providing essential information for working artists, such as opportunities for funding, design competitions and professional development. Over 8,300 opportunities for artists are currently listed on NYFA Source.
NYFA Learning - Statewide outreach
The NYFA staff conducts dozens of professional development seminars for artists throughout the State of New York each year. In addition to programs and services offered through NYFA, seminar topics include Creating Your Own Website, Funding for Individual Artists, How to Create an Artist Portfolio for Visual Artists, and The Business of Art: How to Take Advantage of Available Funding Opportunities. Seminars geared towards assisting immigrant artists navigate the business of art are also presented as part of NYFA’s Immigrant Outreach Initiative. Hosted by nearly 100 presenting partners across the State, these seminars bring together artists and arts professionals to sustain crucial cohesion of community.