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Animating Infrastructure Grants

Grants to Vermont Municipalities, Educational Institutions,
and Nonprofits to Commission Public Works of Art

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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Vermont Arts Council

Conf. Date:


LOI Date:


Deadline Date:



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Grants to Vermont municipalities, educational institutions, and nonprofit organizations to engage artists in producing public art projects to benefit local communities. Applicants must submit a letter of interest prior to applying. Eligible sites for projects include community services, facilities, and infrastructures, such as buildings, parks, trails, sidewalks, benches, water fountains, and fences.

The Vermont Arts Council is offering a funding opportunity to communities that are poised to integrate works of public art into upcoming infrastructure projects. The Council seeks proposals for projects that provide opportunities for artists to engage with community in the design and/or fabrication of permanent or temporary public art for an interior or exterior site that is accessible to the public.

The Animating Infrastructure program is designed to foster partnerships between communities and artists. The intent is to enhance a sense of community pride and identity, foster social connections, and to improve the livability and vibrancy of Vermont communities, downtowns, villages, and neighborhoods. Through the development and installation of site-specific works of public art, Vermont communities can reflect their vision, values, and creative spirit.

For the purposes of this program, the Vermont Arts Council’s definition of infrastructure is broad and includes community facilities and services such as buildings, trails, water or sewer systems, roads, power systems, parks, and more. Functional components of infrastructure such as sidewalks, railings, benches, walls, signs, stairs, sidewalks, tree grates, fences, water fountains, and more in the built and/or natural environment have the potential for artistic enhancement that creates unique places where people want to live, work, visit, and play.

Animating Infrastructure provides communities with funds to engage and work with an artist. Funds will be awarded for:

  • Public Art design: The funding must be used to conduct a process to select an artist and to engage the artist with the community in the development of the design of artwork. At the end of the grant period, the grantee should have a final design that includes a budget, drawings or models, and details about specific materials. It should also include a timeline and information on fabrication, installation, site preparations, and maintenance requirements for the proposed artwork.
  • Public Art implementation: Grant funds may be used to support an artist in the fabrication and installation of public art for a previously designed project.
  • Combination Grants: Grant funds may be used to support both a design process (as outlined above) and the fabrication and installation of public art.

All eligible project proposals are welcome. The Council is especially interested in:

  • Integrated projects where infrastructure is the art
  • Projects in their early planning phases
  • Projects that foster connections among people of diverse socioeconomic groups, abilities, races, cultures, genders, and/or ages, etc.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 150760

Number of Grants:

The Arts Council will ultimately award funds to three to five projects.

Estimated Size of Grant:

Grants will range from $1,000 to $15,000. Up to $5,000 will be awarded for design grants and up to $15,000 will be awarded for implementation and/or combination grants.

Term of Contract:

May 1, 2021: project begins
November 30, 2022: project completed

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Vermont 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations, educational institutions, and municipalities are eligible to apply. Community groups without tax-exempt status may apply using a fiscal agent. A fiscal agent must be a charitable nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization incorporated in Vermont. All applicants (or the fiscal agent) must have a D-U-N-S Number. Proposals from Vermont designated downtowns, village centers, or neighborhood development areas are encouraged. Applicants should have strong, supportive community leadership in place to give the project high potential for being completed successfully.

Who May Not Apply:

• Organizations that have received any other Arts Council grant in the same fiscal year to support the same project
• Organizations with outstanding or incomplete reporting for any Vermont Arts Council grant
• Individual artists

Not Funded:

• The purchase, lease, or exhibition of pre-existing artwork or editions
• Any ongoing operational expenses of the applicant organization or partner
• Capital improvements not directly related to the public artwork
• The purchase of land or property
• Design of artwork that will not be publicly accessible or visible

Pre-proposal Conference:

To learn more about this grant, what to include in the letter of interest, selection criteria and more, attend a free Grantseeker Workshop 1-2 p.m., December 3.

Workshop recording:

Pre-Application Information:

Application Submission and Deadlines:

• December 18, 2020: letter of interest due
• January 29, 2021: finalists invited to develop full proposal
• March 15, 2021: full proposals due
• April 30, 2021: applicants notified of grant award
• May 1, 2021: project begins
• November 30, 2022: project completed
• December 30, 2022: final report submitted

Grants will not require a match, but grantees will be responsible for implementing the project and raising any additional funds necessary for its realization.

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Complete Letter of Intent online:

Inquiries about the Animating Infrastructure program should be made to:
Michele Bailey

Inquiries about using the online application system should be made to:
Meredith Bell

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Vermont

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