Fund launched for artists affected by coronavirus outbreak

Century old art uncovered on walls of Providence restaurant

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Artists who may live paycheck to paycheck present a unique situation when they cannot produce art or teach because a history-making, contagious disease forces a majority of businesses — and art venues — to close, pending a solution.

The Rhode Island State Council on the Arts announced Tuesday a grant program for artists who are in financial distress because of the novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19. The City of Providence Department of Art, Culture and Tourism and the Rhode Island Foundation are also contributing to the effort.

The Artist Relief Fund, as it’s being called, will give grants up to $1,000 to artists. Right now, about $100,000 is in the fund thanks to seeding contributions, and more donations are expected.

Apply for Artist Grant »
Contribute to Artist Relief Fund »

“The arts are integral to our state’s cultural identity and make up a critical sector of our economy,” Gov. Gina Raimondo said in a news release. “This is just one way Rhode Islanders can help our state through this crisis.”

Applications for grants can be submitted through the website of the Council on the Arts. The fund is being managed by Providence representatives of the Alliance of Artists Communities, which is also welcoming donations.

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