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Creative Catalyst Grant Opportunity

The Hausmann Quartet (above) perform 2015 Fellow Yale Strom’s “Somalia Quartet,” a piece that weaves Somalian folk music and western classical motifs.

Calling all artists! The San Diego Foundation invites your participation in the 2016 Creative Catalyst: Individual Artist Fellowships.

In its fourth cycle, the Creative Catalyst Program will award grants ranging from $10,000 to $20,000 to support the creation and development of new work conceived by San Diego County-based professional artists.

Grants will be awarded to artists whose projects focus on creating opportunities for community engagement through arts and culture.

Artist applications are due Friday, February 19, 2016. Projects will take place between July 1, 2016 and June 30, 2017.

Learn More about the Creative Catalyst Program Application

Creative Catalyst: Individual Artist Fellowships

The Creative Catalyst Program reflects The Foundation’s belief and recognition of the value that artists contribute to our region’s vitality, economy and quality of life. Artists are essential to the community-driven priorities identified in Our Greater San Diego Vision for how we Work, Enjoy, Live and Learn (WELL) in San Diego County.

As such, the Creative Catalyst Program seeks to:

To date, the program has supported 35 local artists who have partnered with other artists and community-based arts and culture organizations to create new work and define their craft.

Past fellows used music, film, theater, dance and visual arts to highlight community issues, encourage civic engagement and boost social change. Within the first two Creative Catalyst cycles, over 1,300 original works of art were produced as part of Fellowship projects, and nearly 115,000 community members attended Fellowship events.

Creative Catalyst

Ron Najor’s 2015 Creative Catalyst project “American Baghdad” is an in-depth film documentary that profiles different Iraqi refugees in El Cajon.

Fellowship Opportunities

San Diego artists who have participated in the Creative Catalyst Program have shared that the program supports their collaboration with other artists and nonprofit organizations, connects them to larger more diverse audiences, evolves their creative process and professional growth as an artist, and provides the opportunity to connect with income-generating projects.

“This year-long fellowship did more than give a financial boost to my artistic practice as a working artist living in San Diego,” said Neil Kendricks, 2014 Creative Catalyst Fellow. “It changed my life for the better and gave my work a stamp of legitimacy by providing the means and moral support to begin the process of moving to the next level or my career.”

Following their fellowships, many artists continue their path in collaboration, community and achievement.

For example, 2014 Fellow Iain Gunn collaborated with 2015 Fellow Mike Sears in Sears’ theatrical production of “When It Comes,” which blended Gunn’s puppetry and Sears’ storytelling.

Vicki Leon, a 2012 artist fellow, continues her community-focus by bringing art to neighborhood spaces such as the Manzanita Gathering Place.

Other artists have reached national acclaim like Grammy-nominated Wu Man, a 2014 Fellow.

2016 Artist Application Workshop

Artists interested in applying for the 2016 Creative Catalyst Program are encouraged to attend an Artist Application Workshop. The workshop will be held on Thursday, January 28, 2016 from 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. at The San Diego Foundation. RSVP by January 26.

RSVP Today


About Vi Calvo

Vi CalvoAs the Community Impact Manager at The San Diego Foundation, Vi works with local governments, nonprofits, academic institutions and community groups to identify and support strategic partnerships throughout the region aligned with Work, Enjoy, Live and Learn (WELL). Vi earned a bachelor’s degree in Communications from UC Santa Barbara and a master’s degree in Nonprofit Leadership and Management from the University of San Diego.

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