Call for artists and arts managers | CEC ArtsLink

Deadline: 3 December 2013
Open to: artists and arts organizations in the United States and Eastern and Central Europe, Russia, Central Asia and the Caucasus
Grant: Since 1999, ArtsLink has funded 70 Independent Projects making over $290,000 available to artists and arts managers from abroad.


The next deadline for artists and arts managers in all disciplines from 37 eligible countries will be December 3, 2013. Projects must take place between May 1, 2014 and April 30, 2015.

Please, read the following guidelines carefully and start your application at the bottom of this page.


Guidelines for Applications


ArtsLink accepts applications from contemporary and traditional creative artists working in the performing, design, media, literary and visual arts and arts managers at independent, non-profit and government organizations working in these artistic disciplines. Arts managers must be affiliated with an organization in the non-commercial sector. Artists seeking to work with commercial firms are ineligible. Applicants must be citizens of, and currently reside in, an eligible country. If you are living outside the region temporarily, contact ArtsLink staff to determine your eligibility. Independent Projects awards must include international travel to the US.

There are no age limitations; however, students and non-professionals are ineligible. In addition, projects focusing solely on research, post production or the production of an audio recording are not eligible. Projects involving performances, touring or participation in performing arts festivals can be supported by ArtsLink only if this activity is a component of a more comprehensive proposed project. Panelists will evaluate the quality of the project by assessing the potential for interactive dialogue.

Incomplete applications or applications lacking the required support materials will not be considered.

The earliest eligible project start date for the next application deadline is May 1, 2014. Projects must be completed by April 30, 2015.

Some examples of eligible Independent Projects for performing arts and literature are:

  • An Estonian sculptor collaborating with a non-profit arts organization in the US to create a permanent environmental sculpture on the grounds of their sculpture park;
  • A Syrian dramaturge and playwright collaborating with a US university theater to translate and direct a play and give workshops;
  • A group of Siberian musicians giving concerts, master classes and workshops at schools and community centers in Massachusetts and New York;
  • The collaboration between two Israeli dancers and an American dance company to create and tour new dance work;
  • An Afghan filmmaker researching and shooting a documentary film about a US contemporary artist.

Review Criteria

Independent Projects applications will be evaluated by a review panel comprised of US arts professionals based on the following criteria:

  • Applicant’s ability to independently manage the logistical details of the proposed project
  • Artistic or professional excellence of the applicant’s work
  • Extent to which independent work with a US arts organization is consistent with the applicant’s artistic vision, creative goals and professional development
  • Benefit to the applicant, at this time in his/her career, from interaction with US artists and audiences
  • Applicant’s plans for sharing the benefits of the exchange with artists and institutions in her/his home country

Applicants are advised to submit recent quality work samples. Please follow carefully the instructions for submitted work samples in the application. Applicants should make sure their work is properly labeled and that all work samples are fully and succinctly described. Applications that do not include required materials will not be considered.


We advise preparing the following materials in advance of filling out the application form:

– Resume or CV (500 words maximum)

– Typed answers to the following questions (400 words maximum for each question):
1. Have you ever traveled outside your country of residence to pursue research or study? If so, please indicate where you have traveled and when.
2. How will you share your ArtsLink experience with your home community?
3. How does this project relate to your personal artistic vision and/or creative goals? Why do you want to work in the US and why at this time in your career?

– Budget Form 
You will be asked to upload the completed Project Budget Form (download here) when you fill out the application.

– Project Summary and Description
Short summary of the proposed project (100 words maximum)
Full description of the proposed project (500 words maximum)


You will also need to submit the following materials:

Please submit one of each of the following:
– Letter of recommendation from a professional in the applicant’s home country that addresses the applicant’s character and professional standing. (one-page PDF file)
– Letter of recommendation from a US arts professional that addresses the applicant’s professional reputation and abilities. (one-page PDF file)
– A letter of invitation from the US host organization(s) or individual artist(s) involved in the applicant’s project that briefly describes the project and addresses the applicant’s ability to independently realize the proposal. (one-page PDF file)

These documents can be submitted in online application or sent via email to:


Important Information
You are required to submit work samples, which are a critical part of your application. Because of the limited time available for the review panel, you are encouraged to prepare a well-organized presentation that exhibits your work in the best possible light.

Work samples should be recent ( no more than 5 years old ), preferably of work that is technically or conceptually relevant to your work. Work samples in a language other than English must be accompanied by a synopsis or translation.

You can upload your work samples while completing the online application form. Please include the following information about each sample: title, date, medium, dimensions/duration, your role and short description (no more than 4 sentences). List the work samples in the order in which you would like to have them viewed. For large files, please, use Internet services capable to transfer large-sized data, like Dropbox or WeTransfer. You also may submit link to your video or audio files on YouTube or Vimeo. Files submitted via Internet services must be accompanied by a Work Sample Sheet (download here). Samples submitted without proper descriptions will be subject to rejection.

Please label your materials with your full name as it appears on your application.

Up to 10 images in JPEG format.
– The file name should be in the following format: Number_LastName_Title (e.g. 01_Smith_Untitled 1, 02_Smith_Untitled 2, etc.).
– Each image file should be no larger than 2 MB.
– Submit individual image files only – NO PowerPoint, PDF or Keynote presentations will be accepted.

Two different 3-5 minute video samples.
– Video and Audio files should be in MOV, AVI, MPEG, MP3, MP4 or FLV format for viewing on a PC.
– Label each digital file as follows: Number_LastName_Title.ext (e.g. 01_Smith_Untitled3.mp4).
– The maximum file size for uploaded video or audio files is 10MB. (For larger file size, please, use Internet services capable to transfer large files, like Dropbox or WeTransfer, You also may submit link to your video or audio files on YouTube or Vimeo. Files submitted via Internet services must be accompanied by Work Sample Sheet)
– For longer pieces, note the time cues for the segment that best represents the entire work.

One copy of an entire or excerpted original manuscript in English translation, not to exceed twenty pages for prose or ten pages for poetry. Any pages submitted over the limit will not be reviewed. One sample publication may also be submitted but is not mandatory.
– All pages of the manuscript should be double spaced with standard margins on white paper.
– Label each page clearly with your name and page number in the upper right-hand corner.
– Mailed manuscripts should be stapled.

Please submit examples of published, professional writing or documentation of the applicant’s work as an arts professional. You may also submit items of descriptive literature about the organization(s) you represent (catalogues, brochures, press materials, etc.) All work samples should be accompanied by a description of the materials presented and your involvement in their content development, design and/or distribution (i.e. manager of the program, designer or developer of brochure, general organizational information). Work samples in a language other than English should be accompanied by a synopsis or translation.

If you have questions that are not answered in the application instructions, the below guidelines, or on the Frequently Asked Questions page, please contact ArtsLink Awards staff at

Award amounts

The award amount request must not exceed $5,000 regardless of the number of people planning to travel to the US for the project

2013 Applicants will be notified of the review panel decision by the end of March 2014.

Contact us
By email:, by telephone: 212-643-1985 ext. 22

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