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Cuyahoga Arts & Culture Awards $560,500 in Grants for Artist Support and Resident-Led Projects

Photo Credit: Bob Perkowski

CLEVELAND – Cuyahoga Arts & Culture (CAC) awarded grants totaling $560,500 for artist support programs and resident-led arts and culture projects in 2023 at its meeting Wednesday, December 14, 2022.

CAC’s board approved the following grants to support Cuyahoga County artists:

  • Assembly for the Arts: $140,000 for flexible funding and to support transformative arts projects with a focus in areas that lack arts investment or amenities.
  • Julia de Burgos Cultural Arts Center: $70,000 for Unidos por el Arte, which unites artists to celebrate the diversity of Cleveland’s Latinx community.
  • Karamu House: $120,000 for the Room in the House Residency for visual and performing arts fellowship awards.
  • SPACES: $70,000 for the Urgent Art Fund to support 12 Cuyahoga County artists with flexible funding awards and resources to create new art that is socially, politically, or culturally responsive.

“We are so pleased to provide CAC funding for these nonprofits so they can offer flexible dollars and other critical support for local artists,” said Jill M. Paulsen, CAC’s executive director. “We launched our Support for Artist grants based on feedback from artists and leaders in our community, and they continue to provide artists—including those who have been overlooked in the past—with what they need most: networking opportunities, professional development, access to physical space and flexible support.”

Since 2019, more than 275 artists have directly benefitted from CAC’s SFA grants to nonprofit partners through fellowships, project-based funding, access to physical spaces, and professional development. Of all the artists awarded flexible support, more than 85% identified as Black, Indigenous, or Persons of Color (BIPOC).

The agency’s board also approved grants to support resident-led projects.

  • $60,500 to Neighborhood Connections to co-fund resident-led projects in Cleveland and East Cleveland and in-person gatherings for artists, arts & culture organizations, and residents in 2023; for the first time, this work will be co-presented by Assembly for the Arts. Applicants are eligible for grants of up to $5,000, with CAC matching up to 50% of the award.
  • $100,000 to ioby for Cuyahoga Arts & Culture Match Fund to support resident-led arts and culture projects in Cuyahoga County in 2023. Ioby leverages CAC funding through a 1:1 match from citizen philanthropy. Participants will be trained in crowdfunding best practices and fundraising.

Since 2013, CAC has co-funded over 420 resident-led arts and culture projects in Cleveland and East Cleveland and invested a total of $786,985 through Neighborhood Connections grants and Arts & Culture Network Nights. Since 2019, CAC has invested $268,350 in matching funds into 119 resident-led arts and culture projects through the ioby-CAC Match Fund.

“We are proud to continue our partnerships with Neighborhood Connections and ioby. These programs, which acknowledge the power of arts and culture as a tool for change, have been well received in the community by artists and audiences,” Paulsen said.

Cuyahoga Arts & Culture (CAC) is the region’s largest funder for arts and culture, helping hundreds of organizations in Cuyahoga County connect millions of people to cultural experiences each year. Since 2006, CAC has invested $230 million in 472 organizations, making our community a more vibrant place to live, work and play. CAC is a separate government entity and a political subdivision of the State of Ohio. For more information, visit

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CAC Staff