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COVID-19: Resources for Artists

Artists Covid relief by the numbers: 470 Vermont artists received $196K (includes grants to Clemmons Family Farm and Vermont Abenaki Artists Association). Support for artist relief comes from the Vermont Arts Council, New England Foundation for the Arts, Vermont Community Foundation Arts Endowment, and private donors.

For information on Vermont Arts Council’s Covid-19 relief efforts, visit our “COVID-19 and Vermont Arts Council Grantmaking” page.

For current information on the Vermont Arts Council's grantmaking during the COVID-19 pandemic, including changes and additions to current grant programs, please visit our "COVID-19 and Vermont Arts Council Grantmaking" page.

Shuttered Venue Operators Grants

The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 (the “CAA”), signed into US law on Dec. 27, 2020, provides $900 billion in new COVID-19 relief funding. It includes several provisions related to individuals, businesses and nonprofit organizations in Vermont’s creative sector. The CAA includes a new $15 billion grant program called Shuttered Venue Operators Grants (SVOG)—also known as “Save Our Stages"—through which the U.S. Small Business Administration will provide aid to struggling live venue operators and related businesses. The grants will offer a critical lifeline for the nation’s performing arts venues, movie theatres and museums. Read more about the program and eligibility.

The SVOG program guidelines and application have not yet opened, but the Small Business Administration released a FAQ document on Jan. 28, 2021 that provides additional information about the SVOG program to help venue operators prepare to apply. Applicants will need a DUNS number and must register on sam.gov. This registration process can take some time, so potential applicants should start the process now.

COVID-19 Resources for Artists

  • Safe Outdoor Venues: The Vermont Recreation & Parks Association and the Vermont Arts Council hosted an online discussion on Jan. 21, 2021, with artists and performers about the ongoing challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic and safe outdoor venues for the summer 2021 season. View the recording.

  • The Adolph & Esther Gottlieb Emergency Grant (while financial losses due to COVID-19 are not eligible, one-time assistance for a specific emergency, including fire, flood, or emergency medical need, are eligible for funding)

  • This crowdsourced freelance artists' COVID-19 resource directory. Original resources and inspiration provided by Nicole Brewer, Ann Marie Lonsdale, Quanice Floyd, Tiffany Wilhelm, Brian Herrera, Hannah Fenlon, & Clementine Bordeaux

  • The Vermont Arts Council's Facebook page is regularly updated with resources for artists and virtual arts events to attend while social distancing.

  • Musicians and music industry workers who've lost 50% of their income are eligible to apply to the Sweet Relief Musicians Fund.

  • The PEN American Writer's Emergency Fund offers grants of $500 to $1,000 based on applications that demonstrate an inability to meet an acute financial need, especially one resulting from the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak. The fund has paused acceptance of applications as of March 1, 2021.

  • Craft artists who make the majority of their income from their art, and who have been working professionally for at least three years prior to their emergency, may apply to the Craft Emergency Relief Fund.

  • The Musicians Foundation Fund supports musicians impacted by COVID-19.

  • Foundation of Contemporary Arts Emergency Grants COVID-19 Fund 2.0 is a temporary fund intended to meet the needs of experimental artists who have been impacted by the economic fallout from postponed or canceled performances and exhibitions. Ends March 15, 2021. 

  • Americans for the Arts has developed an on-demand video series, "COVID-19 Federal Relief Funds for the Arts 101."

  • Free technical assistance is now available through the Small Business Recovery Technical Assistance Program with support in a variety of areas being provided by the state’s 12 regional development corporations, Champlain College, the Vermont Chamber of Commerce, Northern Community Investment Corporation, and the Vermont Sustainable Jobs Fund.

  • MusiCares offers grants of up to $1,000 to individual artists who have at least 3 years of employment in the music industry and/or 6 commercially released recordings (singles), or 6 commercially or promotionally released music videos. Grant funds will be distributed as long as funding allows.

  • Artists U maintains a list of Covid-10 resources for artists.

  • Author’s League Fund offers interest-free loans of between $2,000 and $3,000 to writers with severe medical/health-related problems and other serious misfortunes. 

Please visit our Artists Knowledge Center page for more emergency funding sources for artists.

Impact Surveys

COVID-19 Impact Survey for Artists and Creative Workers (Americans from the Arts). All types of creative workers are encouraged to participate: practicing artists, culture bearers, educators and teaching artists, creative entrepreneurs, and hobby artists. The survey aims to gauge what is happening to the creative economy and address what is needed to provide relief and spur recovery.


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