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SC Arts Commission Grants Programs

S.C. Artists' Ventures Initiative (AVI) Grant Guidelines

 

New Grant Round In Progress

The S.C. Artists' Ventures Initiative (AVI) Grant program is a two-part process, with letters of intent due December 15, 2014. Selected applicants will be invited to develop a full grant proposal.

 

Purpose

To encourage and enable the creation of new artist-driven, arts-based business ventures that will provide career satisfaction and sustainability for South Carolina artists.

 

South Carolina artists (individuals and collaboratives) may apply for up to $5,000 in order to launch a new venture or significantly alter an existing venture.

 

If you have any questions about the grant process, please contact Joy Young at 803-734-8203.

 

 

Grant Eligibility Requirements

Open to artists (individuals and collaboratives) with a strong plan to launch a new arts-based business venture that will operate in an ongoing manner, to execute a temporary venture that will lead to increased audience and income, or significantly alter an existing venture. Funding will be awarded to the individual artist identified as the primary applicant, not to the business entity. This grant award will constitute taxable income for the artist and should be reported to the federal and state governments.

 

Applicant must be:

  • A professional-caliber working artist or group of artists working in collaboration
  • A legal resident of the U.S. and S.C. with a permanent residence in the state for at least one year prior to the application and throughout the grant period.

 

Additional Requirements of this Grant

 

Applicants whose proposals are funded in this initiative will commit to:

  1. Attendance at no fewer than two convenings designed to further the professional development of participating artist entrepreneurs. These meetings will take place during 2015 and 2016.
  2. Submission of quarterly progress reports (narrative and financial statements) over the course of the first 18 months of the grant.

 

Restrictions

Past recipients of the AVI grant may not reapply at this time. Additional grant funds may be available through Quarterly Grants for Artists.

 

Match

1:2 (applicant:S.C. Arts Commission). 100% of the applicant's match must be cash. No in-kind or creative time is allowed as part of applicant's match.

 


 

How to Apply

In order to be considered as an applicant for the Artists’ Ventures Initiative grant, you must first submit a letter of intent along with samples of your work. If you are approved to move forward, you will then be invited to submit a full application.

 

Deadlines for the Two-Part Grant Process

I.  Part One: Letter of Intent to Apply - Deadline: December 15, 2014

The South Carolina Arts Commission will review letters of intent and related materials and extend an invitation to selected applicants to develop the proposed venture into a full grant proposal. Letters and support materials must be postmarked on or before December 15, 2014, or hand-delivered to the South Carolina Arts Commission offices before 5:00 pm, December 15, 2014. Letter of Intent Guidelines >>

 

II. Part Two: Full Grant Application - Deadline: March 16, 2015

After the review of the letters of intent and support materials has been completed, selected applicants will be invited to proceed to Part Two with a full grant application. Only those applicants who have been invited will be considered. Applications must be postmarked on or before March 16, 2015, or hand-delivered to the South Carolina Arts Commission offices before 5:00 pm, March 16, 2015. Guidelines for the Full Grant Application >>

 


 

Part One: Letter of Intent – Due December 15, 2014

Your letter of intent contains four sections:

 

  1. Applicant information
  2. Business plan summary
  3. Work samples
  4. Professional resumes for all primary artists involved in the venture

 

Section One: Applicant Information

 

Please provide the following:

 

  • Name
  • Artistic discipline (e.g. visual, literary, film, media, theatre, music, dance, etc.)
  • Mailing address
  • Primary phone number
  • Email address
  • Doing business as (if applicable)
  • Business street address
  • Business phone number
  • Business email
  • Business website
  • Organizational structure
    • Legal status of the venture (e.g. Sole Proprietorship, LLC, etc.)
    • Permanent operation or one-time event
    • Are you registered with the S.C. Secretary of State?
  • List other primary contributors, partners, or employees involved in this venture

 

Section Two: A Summary of your Business Plan

 

In one to two pages (1 inch margins, single-spaced, 12 point type), the summary must address the following:

 

  • The business' mission statement.
  • A description of the business' operations (its work and the processes that accomplish that work).
  • The business' marketing strategy (where and how you sell your product or services, as well as a description of the market research that has led to these choices).
  • A clear explanation of how requested funding will be utilized. Financial statements are not necessary at this point.

 

Section Three: Work Samples

 

Please submit work samples that best represent the type of work you will be doing in relation to this grant submission.  If necessary, please feel free to combine artistic disciplines. For example: if you are a performing arts cooperative, you might submit a video of a combined performance of dancers, singers, and musicians.  All work samples should be current (less than five years old). If you have questions about work samples, please contact Joy Young at 803-734-8203.

 

  • For visual arts  – 10 high-resolution images submitted on CD.
  • For literary arts  –  two sets of writing samples, totaling 10 pages per set (double spaced, 12 point type).
  • For music, theatre, dance, film, and media arts  – a 5 minute, high quality recording of principal performers, submitted on CD, DVD or via internet link.

 

Section Four: Professional resumes for all primary artists involved in the venture.

 

  • Please include both artistic and entrepreneurial experience.

 

Please mail or deliver your Letter of Intent by December 15, 2014 to:

S.C. Artists' Ventures Initiative
South Carolina Arts Commission
1026 Sumter Street, Suite 200
Columbia, SC 29201

 


 

Part Two: Full Grant Application - Due March 16, 2015

After the review of the letters of intent and support materials has been completed, selected applicants will be invited to proceed to Part Two with a full grant application. Only those applicants who have been invited will be considered. Applications must be postmarked on or before March 16, 2015, or hand-delivered to the South Carolina Arts Commission offices before 5:00 pm, March 16, 2015.

 

Your full application will be evaluated based on your adherence to the guidelines and on the following criteria:

 

  • There is a strong team in place that has the capacity to bring the product or service to market.
  • The product or service provides a feasible creative or artistic value to the marketplace.
  • The target market is clearly understood and there is a clear and well-defined strategy to achieve objectives and goals.
  • Current and potential competitors are identified and there is a distinct plan for differentiating your product or service.
  • There are reasonable financial projections and a demonstrated method for creating new revenue streams to sustain profitability.

 

Application Materials

  1. Grant Application for Individuals form (PDF) - Page 1 ONLY (do not use the budget or support materials sections on page 2)
    (How To Use PDFs)
  2.  

  3. Venture Plan

    In no more than 5 pages, provide a plan for the venture that includes a summary, the venture's mission, operational strategy, product information and marketing plan. Your plan should be in 12 point type, single spaced, with 1 inch margins. Use this structure:

    1. Mission Statement

       

      What are you doing and why are you doing it? How will this venture help you build a satisfying and sustainable artistic career? What is your financial goal for this venture?
    2.  

    3. Organizational Strategy

         

      1. Legal status of the venture
        Is this venture a permanent operation or a one-time event? Have you registered with the S.C. Secretary of State? Is this venture a sole proprietorship, a Limited Liability Corporation (LLC), a partnership, a non-profit corporation?
      2.  

      3. Management Team
        Who is managing the artistic product and operational processes required by this venture? As an attachment, please provide resumes for each. Does your venture have a board of directors or advisors? Please provide a brief biographical sketch of each in this space.
      4.  

      5. Employees
        How were participating artists and support personnel selected? How will participating artists and support personnel be compensated?
    4.  

    5. Product or Performance

       

      1. Description of Artistic Product or Performance
        Please provide a one-paragraph description of the venture’s primary artistic work. What stage of development is the venture currently in? What is the timetable for the venture during the grant period (July 1, 2015 – December 31, 2016)? Are there liability concerns to address? Have necessary permits and insurance coverage been obtained? Are trademarks, copyrights, or patents required?
      2.  

      3. Facility needs
        Please describe the location(s) for your venture and explain the appropriateness of the space and location.
    6.  

    7. Marketing Plan

       

      1. Market Research
        Describe your target market and outline the research you have done to determine this market. How large is this market?
      2.  

      3. What is the competition for this market?
      4.  

      5. What is your strategy for reaching this market and getting them to buy your product? How will you differentiate yourself from your competition? What distribution channels will you use? How will you price your product?
    8.  

  4. Financial information

     

    • If you are proposing an ongoing business, you must complete projections for the 12 months beginning January 1, 2015, and ending December 31, 2015. Please use the AVI Financial Projections Template – do not substitute another form.
    • To use this template:

      1. Follow the link to open the Excel document.
      2. Go to the "File" menu in Excel and choose "Save as." Save the file to a convenient location on your computer or network.
      3. The document contains examples of the types of information you will provide. Enter your data in place of this sample data.
      4. Save your completed document.
      5. Print ALL PAGES of your completed AVI Financial Projections Template, to submit as part of your application packet.

       

    • If you are proposing a project or one-time event, you must submit a Grant Budget for Individual Artist Projects form (PDF) (How To Use PDFs). Enter the applicant's name in the "Grantee Name" field. Leave the "Grant #" field blank.
  5.  

  6. Professional resumes for those managing the artistic product and support processes central to the venture

 

Note: Do not use 3-ring binders, folders, staples, or bind the application materials other than with binder clips or paper clips.

 

Please mail or deliver your application packet by March 16, 2015 to:

S.C. Artists' Ventures Initiative
South Carolina Arts Commission
1026 Sumter Street, Suite 200
Columbia, S.C. 29201

 

 


 

Grant Payments

Payment will be on a reimbursement basis only. Grantee may receive up to 80% of the grant award during the grant period, with the final 20% released upon receipt and approval of Final Report.

 

Final Report

ALL GRANTEES are required to file a Final Report at the end of the grant period. The Final Report Due Date is printed on your contract. Failure to submit an accurate and complete Final Report by the due date will result in cancellation of the award and repayment of funds received. The S.C. Arts Commission will not fund applicants who have outstanding Final Reports.

 

Note: All forms are PDF files. How To Use PDFs >>

 

A complete Final Report package contains the following items:

 

  1. Three-page Final Report form – Cover page (includes grantee information and original signatures), Activity Summary, and Activity Locations

  2. Narrative

    Grants to Artists

     

    For all artist grant categories EXCEPT Fellowships and Traditional Arts Apprenticeships (Final Report created with program coordinator).

     

    Submit a narrative addressing the following:

     

    • Summarize funded activities.
      • Include a schedule of events and information on participating artists/consultants.
      • Specify any changes in activities from original grant application.
      • If you were unable to spend your entire award, please provide a brief explanation.
    • Evaluate funded activities.
      • Discuss the impact of this project on your career and/or your community.
      • Describe the project’s most outstanding accomplishment of the grant period.
      • How did you evaluate the success of this work?
      • For ongoing projects, what changes do you plan on implementing that could strengthen or improve activities?
    • Describe how you reached out to members of the S.C. General Assembly and other state and local elected officials about the value of this grant to your work.
    • Describe how you credited the S.C. Arts Commission for its grants support.
    • What can the S.C. Arts Commission do to improve its services to you and/or your community?
  3.  

  4. Budget form

 

For more information, please contact Joy Young (803-734-8203).

Instructions

In addition to this page, you must read the following for complete guideline information:


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