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Creative Development Awards (CDA)

Grants to Pennsylvania Artists and Arts Nonprofits for
Career Development Opportunities and to Host Residencies

Agency Type:

Foundation / Corporation

Funding Source:

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The Heinz Endowments

Conf. Date:


Deadline Date:

09/22/21 11:59 PM


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Grants of up to $20,000 and grants of up to $35,000 to Pennsylvania artists and nonprofit arts organizations in eligible locations for professional development and residencies. Grants are intended to assist promising professional artists in any discipline with artistic and career goals. Eligible artists are located in Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Butler, Fayette, Greene, Indiana, Lawrence, Mercer, Somerset, Venango, Washington, and Westmoreland counties. The Creative Development Awards include Creative Development Grants for artists and Residencies at Arts Organizations.

The Creative Development Awards program aims to: 

  • Support the creative development of professional artists in the region
  • Create career advancement and recognition opportunities
  • Incentivize creative partnerships among artists and local cultural organizations
  • Increase the visibility of independent working artists in the region’s cultural life.

Grant Types:

  • The Creative Development Awards: Professional artists in any discipline/media—such as performance, craft, or visual art—and at any career stage may apply directly for grants to further their artists and career goals.
  • Residencies at Arts Organizations: Arts organizations may apply for grants to host a residency with local, national, or international artists
    or arts administrators. Artists working in all media are welcome. Artists must work primarily as artists, not as teachers, art therapists, or in some other capacity. While residency activities may lead to work that has a social or educational benefit, priority will be given to projects that grapple with artistic challenges and questions.

The grant offers support to an annual cohort of regional professional artists, with the goal of advancing their careers through direct financial assistance, partnership opportunities, and increased visibility. The annual program will help advance awardees’ careers through increased visibility, partnership opportunities, and financial assistance.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 197690

Estimated Size of Grant:

- Creative Development Grants: Up to $20,000
- Residencies at Arts Organizations: Up to $35,000

Term of Contract:

Residencies should last a minimum of three months to a maximum of 18 months.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Individual artists and arts organizations in Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Butler, Fayette, Greene, Indiana, Lawrence, Mercer, Somerset, Venango, Washington, and Westmoreland counties may apply.

Eligible applicants must be professional artists with a significant body of original works of art, at least 21 years of age or older and a resident of an eligible southwestern Pennsylvania county. A professional artist is defined as an individual who has devoted significant time and training to build a career creating or interpreting works of art. For example, the definition includes playwrights and choreographers, as well as those who bring works of art to life for audiences, such as stage directors, actors, dancers, or designers. Professional artists may be emerging, mid-career, or established.

An arts organization is defined as an IRS-registered, 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation with a mission to produce or present work in dance, film/video, digital applications, literature, music, theater, traditional/folk arts, visual arts, or interdisciplinary work. Eligible organizations may have a budget of any size and must demonstrate the capacity to implement proposed activities. University arts departments, history museums, or other nonprofit cultural entities are also eligible if a strong track record and/or effective support systems for working with creative artists can be demonstrated.

Full-time students or recipients of an Investing in Professional Artists (the former Endowments and The Pittsburgh Foundation joint program that preceded the Creative Development Awards) grant are not eligible to apply.

Pre-proposal Conference:

Office hours to answer questions about the program will be held on Sept. 1, Sept. 10, and Sept. 17, 2021. Please read the guidelines before scheduling your appointment.

You may schedule your appointment by making a request at the email address in Contact Information, below.

Pre-Application Information:

The deadline to apply is 11:59 PM on September 22, 2021.

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Apply online:

To contact the Creative Development Awards team, please email:

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Pennsylvania: Allegheny, Armstrong, Beaver, Butler, Fayette, Greene, Indiana, Lawrence, Mercer, Somerset, Venango, Washington, and Westmoreland Counties

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