Artwork done as part of the COLA AIR program… The Department of Cultural Affairs in L.A. is calling for submissions for the 2018-19 grant cycle. (Photo Courtesy:

Los Angeles’ Department of Cultural Affairs recently announced that they are seeking submissions for the 2018-19 City of Los Angeles Individual Artist Fellowships in their Artist In Residence program. The COLA and AIR deadline for online submissions is Friday, October 27. For hard copies it is Wednesday, November 1.

AIR officials said they are aiming through the program to provide artistic and cultural opportunities to underserved communities.

“The City of Los Angeles is one of the few remaining municipalities in the nation that funds grants to individual artists,” they said via their website.

“Los Angeles is a premier place to pursue an artistic career,” said DCA General Manager Danielle Brazell. “DCA promotes artists as important drivers of civic vitality. Our COLA Individual Artist Fellowships and our Artist in Residence Program are two of the essential ways DCA accomplishes this goal.”

The DCA allocates over 300 grants annually to support nonprofit arts and cultural organizations and individual artists.

“Elevating and empowering recipients on a local, national, and international level, these grants nurture a collective cultural consciousness and enable grantees to leverage additional support from outside sources,” officials said.

“Grants are available in a variety of disciplines and categories including dance, music, media, and the visual arts, as well as literature, educational programs, residencies, and professional fellowships. Grantees are selected through a competitive peer review process and contracted for services across LA’s neighborhoods.”

The department and its programs are a vital part of the city’s success, said Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti.

“Los Angeles is the creative capital of the world, so art isn’t an afterthought for us — it’s part of who we are, and it’s essential to the health and happiness of our people,” Garcettie said.

“Art has extraordinary power to transform perceptions, attitudes, and behaviors, especially when it lives in places that are accessible to everyone. We’re proud to invest in the artistic genius that thrives in our city, because it gives Angelenos more opportunities to exercise their imaginations and inspire one another…”

Those who receive grants are asked to create new work that will presented in presentation series, according to DCA Grants Administration Division Director Joe Smoke.

“The COLA presentation greatly benefits general audiences and honors a selection of established and creative artists who live and work in Los Angeles,” he said.

Grants are awarded on a competitive basis to bring the highest quality artistic and cultural services to Los Angeles residents and visitors, program officials said. Since 1990, the Department of Cultural Affairs has awarded over $69 million to local artists, arts organizations, and arts events. In fiscal year 2017/18, the department will offer over $3.2 million in project support to more than 285 local artists and organizations through its Grants Administration Division.

Artists may apply to both the COLA Individual Artist Fellowships and to the AIR grants program, but should consider the time commitment required by each possible contractual obligation. A series of free webinars workshops will provide information about the grant guidelines and the application process.

COLA workshops Thursday, October 5 at 6 pm. AIR workshops are Monday, October 2 at 6 pm and          Thursday, October 12 at 1 pm.

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