The Impact of a Grant

(Plein Air paintings by Donna Keyser)

It can be hard to make a living as an artist. Grants help. What, though, is the impact of a single grant for a single artist? A few recent examples from artists on the TwispWorks campus might help us understand more about grants for artists.

Donna Keyser received a Partner Opportunity Fund grant from TwispWorks. She used the funds to make upgrades to her studio on the TwispWorks campus including a display wall and lights. This project will make her studio more inviting to visitors and should help her sell more of her stunning plein air paintings.

(Perri Howard’s collaboration with Ocean Alliance)

Perri Howard received a McMillen Foundation grant. She used the funds to secure an exhibition space with Ocean Alliance, a nonprofit on the East Coast. Her exhibit will feature the visual output of Great Whale song recordings going back to 1952 and including both the COVID pause and 9/11—times when the noise pollution from ships were greatly reduced.

Mandy Shoger, the potter behind Foxtail Pottery, received a small business grant from Okanogan County. She used the funds to purchase a shredding machine that turns recycled cardboard into packing materials for shipping her fragile goods around the country. The machine reduces Shoger’s business expenses and makes her business eco-friendlier.

What’s the impact of a grant? It’s not just about money—each of these examples shows how grants create a ripple effect. Artists use grants to make their livelihoods more sustainable, reach bigger and different audiences, and deepen their practices.

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