2019 Arts Innovator Award

Deadline: November 12, 2018 at 11:59PM PST

The Artist Trust (AT) Arts Innovator Award (AIA) recognizes artists who demonstrate innovation in their art practice. This unrestricted award of $25,000 is given annually to two Washington State artists of any discipline who are originating new work, experimenting with new ideas, taking risks, and pushing the boundaries of their fields. 

Funding for this award is generously donated by the Dale and Leslie Chihuly Foundation. Dale recalls receiving grants that supported experimentation early in his career, adding credibility, opening doors, and enabling new connections for him as an artist. Today Dale remembers the importance of this support, and he and Leslie would like to help artists in a similar way. 

Artists of color and artists living outside of King County are strongly encouraged to apply. See Tips & Hints (page 4) for support with your application.

Download the 2019 Arts Innovator Award Guidelines.

The 2019 Arts Innovator Awards are open to artists and artist teams residing in Washington State working in all disciplines.


• 18 years of age or older by application deadline; 

• Washington State residents at the time of both application and payment (payment will be made February 2019);

• Generative artists (those who are the originators of works of art) with a minimum of five years in professional art practice; and

• Available for finalist interviews on January 17, 2019. Applicants who will not be interviewed as finalists will be notified on January 17, 2019.


• Recipients of more than one AT grant per calendar year;

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

• Current graduate or undergraduate students enrolled at the time of both application and payment (payment will be made February 2019);

• Current AT staff, Board of Trustees, honorary committee, consultants, contractors, AIA panelists, or their family.

• Affiliated with Chihuly Studio, Dale and Leslie Chihuly Foundation, Portland Press, or family of Dale or Leslie Chihuly.


Applying for grants can be hard, and we want to help you. Here are ways you can get support from our staff as you work on your application: 

Office Hours: one-on-one consultations with our staff, provided in-person or over the phone, on October 5 or October 17 (by appointment only, follow links to register).

Preliminary Application Review: submit an application through Submittable by October 22, 2018 and request preliminary review. Our staff will review your application and provide detailed feedback by November 2, 2018. The application is then opened for editing and must be resubmitted by the final deadline.

Resources: visit our website for reference guides, toolkits, and other information.

Webinar: On October 3rd, we held an informational webinar about the award and the application process. View it here.

Contact Us: We are happy to answer questions about your application. Our contact information is below. Note: our ability to answer questions in the days leading up to the deadline is limited. Please start early and don’t wait to contact us for application support.

Additional Support:

Contact Artist Trust:

  • with questions about application requirements, guidelines, eligibility, etc.; 
  • for any accessibility accommodations needed for you to complete the application;
  • if you need to access or edit a submitted application if it is still prior to the deadline of November 12, 2018.

 Monday–Friday: 8:30am–5:00pm PST
Brian McGuigan // Program Director  
brian@artisttrust.org : 206/467-8734 x23  
Katy Hannigan // Program Manager  
katy@artisttrust.org: 206/467-8734 x25  
Zach Frimmel // Program Coordinator  
zach@artisttrust.org: 206/467-8734 x20  

 Contact Submittable: 

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


Artist Trust