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S.C. Arts Commission Press Releases

Artists' Ventures Initiative Grants Available for Artist-Entrepreneurs


Nov. 25, 2013

Media Contact:

Milly Hough
(803) 734-8698


COLUMBIA, S.C. – The South Carolina Arts Commission supports the growth and development of creative businesses by offering S.C. artists up to $5,000 to launch a new venture or significantly alter an existing venture. South Carolina Artists' Ventures Initiative grants are open to artists (individuals and collaboratives) with a strong plan for an artist-driven, arts-based business venture.


The grant application is a two-part process, with letters of intent due Dec. 13. Selected applicants will be invited to develop a full grant proposal. Guidelines are available at www.SouthCarolinaArts.com.


Because this is a highly competitive process, artists considering applying for this grant are encouraged to discuss your project with your S.C. Arts Commission coordinator before applying.


Artists who receive grants become part of the S.C. Artists' Ventures Initiative “business incubator,” which brings grantees together regularly for in-depth progress reviews and business training. The gatherings are led by Andrew Simonet, who founded Artists U in Philadelphia to provide artists with planning and professional development programs. The training can be a life-changing experience, according to artist Kimi Maeda, a 2013 AVI grant recipient.


"Before the retreat I felt so much frustration as an artist -- powerless and at the mercy of external forces," said Maeda. "However, after that retreat I saw that I could take control of my professional career. I dreamed big. I set goals. And most importantly, I figured out what steps to take in order to reach those goals. Winning the Artists’ Ventures Initiatives grant for Belle et Bête has been a huge step in the process. The incredible support we received from the Arts Commission allowed us to push ourselves well beyond our comfort zones."


The S.C. Artists' Ventures Initiative is dedicated to improving conditions for S.C. artists by helping them develop the knowledge and skills to build satisfying, sustainable careers. SCAVI was initially funded by a grant from Leveraging Investments in Creativity (LINC), a national initiative that worked to improve conditions for artists.


About the S.C. Arts Commission:

The South Carolina Arts Commission is the state agency charged with creating a thriving arts environment that benefits all South Carolinians, regardless of their location or circumstances. Created by the South Carolina General Assembly in 1967, the Arts Commission works to increase public participation in the arts by providing services, grants and leadership initiatives in three areas: arts education, community arts development and artist development. Headquartered in Columbia, S.C., the Arts Commission is funded by the state of South Carolina, by the federal government through the National Endowment for the Arts and other sources.