2021 Grants for Artists' Progress Awards (GAP)
Deadline: Tuesday, September 7, 2021 at 11:59 p.m. PST

For the 2021 award cycle, we have re-envisioned GAP as Grants for Artists’ Progress, a hybrid merit-and-need-based award. The goal of this year’s regionally focused program is to center artists from backgrounds and communities most deeply impacted by the pandemic and historically excluded from funding and resources. Two multi-disciplinary statewide artist panels will recommend fifty $1,500 investments for working artists of any discipline who identify as Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) in five key regions across Washington State. An equal number of funds and awards will be evenly allocated to each region: West, Puget Sound, North Central, South Central, and East.


The changes to the 2021 process are part of an overall strategy to reverse historic inequities in Artist Trust’s funding programs, and move resources to Washington State communities without access to other funding for individual artists.  This is a year of learning, growth, and transformation. 2021 GAP will not only broaden our reach, it will help us better understand our impact and inform future programs. For more information, please read our 2021 GAP Awards FAQ.

The 2021 GAP Awards are made possible in part thanks to support from WarnerMedia, funded by AT&T. Deep appreciation to participants in our statewide artist focus groups and our thought partners the Tremaine Foundation, the Arts and Science Council of Charlotte, the NEA, the Artist Trust Strategic Vision and Racial Equity Committees, Board of Trustees, and staff.

Grants for Artists’ Progress (GAP), previously known as Grants for Artists’ Projects, are hybrid merit- and need-based grants of $1,500 to artists of any discipline residing in Washington State. 2021 GAP Awards will honor Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) for the merit of their artwork and the impact this award will have on their practice. In 2021, Artist Trust will award 50 GAP Awards to be evenly distributed to the five regions of Washington State: West, Puget Sound, North Central, South Central, and East.   

We define BIPOC artists as individuals identifying as one or more of the following ethnicities: 

Alaskan Native, Asian/Asian-American/Pacific Islander or Hawaiian, Black/African/African-American, Latinx, Middle Eastern, Native American or Indigenous, or South Asian.

Artist Trust recognizes that Black and Indigenous people experience more barriers and less opportunities than other people of color. We use the term BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color) to acknowledge this reality.

Throughout the 2021 GAP Awards adjudication process, panelists will be asked to prioritize Black and Indigenous artists, as well as discuss marginalized identities within BIPOC communities.

Before starting your application, please read the 2021 Grants for Artists' Progress guidelines

The 2021 GAP Awards are open to BIPOC artists residing in Washington State working in all disciplines. Artist Trust COVID-19 Relief Fund recipients are eligible for this award.  

• 18 years of age or older;

• Washington State residents at the time of application and payment;

• Individual artists (or artist teams) who are the originators of works of art;

• BIPOC (Alaskan Native, Asian/Asian-American/Pacific Islander or Hawaiian, Black/African/African-American, Latinx, Middle Eastern, Native American or Indigenous, or South Asian).

• A recipient of a GAP from 2016–2019;

• Previous recipients of the James W. Ray Distinguished Artist or Arts Innovator Awards;

• Recipients of another Artist Trust grant in the 2021 calendar year (including 2020 Fellowship);

• Current graduate or undergraduate students enrolled at the time of both application and payment (payment will be made December 2021);

• Applying on behalf of a company, nonprofit, organization, fiscal sponsorship, or community group;

• Current Artist Trust staff, Board of Trustees, honorary committee, current GAP panelists, or their immediate family.

Applying for grants can be hard, and we want to help you. Artist Trust offers the following support services and resources to guide you through the application process:

How to Apply for 2021 GAP: A brief walkthrough of how to apply, the process, and selection criteria. Click here to view this pre-recorded webinar. 

Office Hours: 20-minute consultations with our staff, provided in-person via Zoom or by phone, on August 12 & 26. Make an appointment at artisttrust. org. 

Study Hall: Pop into this open Zoom session on Wednesday, August 4 & Tuesday, August 31, 1-3pm to work on your 2021 GAP Award application. During Study Hall you can speak with a program manager, work through your application on mute or request a breakout session with another applicant for support. This is not a private session, but rather a space for information sharing and work time. Zoom link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/84037409447.

Reference Guide: Review examples of successful applications from past year’s awardees at artisttrust.org

Resources: Visit artisttrust.org for toolkits, tips, and other information. 

Contact Us: We are happy to answer questions about your application. Please note: it’s hard for us to answer questions on the day of the deadline. Start your application early and don’t wait to contact us with questions.

Please note, if you require a translator to complete your application or have other accessibility needs, please get in touch. Our contact information is below.

Monday–Friday: 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. PST
• with questions about applications, guidelines, eligibility, support services, and resources;
• if you need to access or edit a submitted application prior to the deadline of September 7, 2021.

Lydia Boss // Program Manager
lydia@artisttrust.org: 206/467-8734 x25

Luther Hughes // Program Manager
luther@artisttrust.org: 206/467-8734 x20

• with website access issues;
• with questions about uploading or formatting files;
• with other technical support needs.

Artist Trust