California Arts Council Announces 2021 Grant Award Recipients

SACRAMENTO, CA – Today the California Arts Council announced 441 grant awards totaling $13,046,887 in project and operational support for nonprofit organizations and units of government throughout the state of California. One additional grant program, providing support for individual artist fellowships, is slated for approval by the Council at its meeting in September, increasing the total award amount for the 2020-21 fiscal year to a projected $14,463,000 across approximately 600 grants.

Organizations were awarded grants across five different program areas prioritizing small organizations with a focus toward nurturing and healing our communities through the arts; keeping the doors of our arts and cultural institutions open; protecting jobs in the creative field; and preserving our cultural heritage, our stories, and our culture bearers. Successful applications aligned closely with the agency’s vision of a California where all people flourish with universal access to and participation in the arts.

“The California Arts Council is proud to support the work of each of these organizations within their communities, and to recognize the resilience and dedication of every applicant during this unprecedented time,” said California Arts Council Executive Director Anne Bown-Crawford. “We look forward to the opportunity to bring even more support to the field in 2022, with two grant cycles and much more funding available, thanks to the Legislature’s boosted investment and belief in arts and culture as a means for positive social change.”

The California Arts Council’s grant programs are administered through a multistep, public process. Following an open call for applications, submissions are adjudicated by peer review panels made up of experts from the arts and cultural fields and representative of California’s diverse geography; racial, ethnic, and gender identities; perspectives and knowledge. Based on panel recommendations and availability of funds, the Council voted on grant awards at a virtual public meeting on July 20. The final vote for the remaining grant program for FY20-21 will take place in September.

Interested members of the public, artists, arts organizations, and community leaders are encouraged to visit the California Arts Council website to learn about future grant opportunities as details become available. Notification of grant program guidelines, applications, and technical assistance opportunities will be also published in the California Arts Council’s weekly e-newsletter, ArtBeat. Subscribe at

Fiscal Year 2020-21 Grant Programs and Awards

Awards are listed below by individual program.

Administering Organization – Relief for Individual Artists and Cultural Practitioners: Support to a single partner organization to administer unrestricted rapid relief funding on behalf of the Arts Council.

Number of Grants Awarded: 1
Total Investment: $1,361,875

2020-21 Administering Organization – Relief for Individual Artists and Cultural Practitioners (PDF)

Arts & Cultural Organizations General Operating Relief: Supporting arts and cultural organizations who have experienced economic hardships due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Number of Grants Awarded: 271
Total Investment: $7,430,057

2020-21 Arts & Cultural Organizations General Operating Relief Awards (PDF)

Impact Projects: Supporting collaborative projects that center artists and artistic practice in responding to issues currently faced by California’s communities.

Number of Grants Awarded: 91
Total Investment: $1,566,865

2020-21 Impact Projects Awards (PDF)

JUMP StArts: Supporting arts education projects for youth impacted by the justice system.

Number of Grants Awarded: 18
Total Investment: $774,240

2020-21 JUMP StArts Awards (PDF)

Statewide and Regional Networks: Supporting arts service organizations and networks.

Number of Grants Awarded: 60
Total Investment: $1,913,850

2020-21 Statewide and Regional Networks Awards (PDF)

Media Inquiries:
Kimberly Brown
Public Affairs Specialist

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The California Arts Council is a state agency with a mission of strengthening arts, culture, and creative expression as the tools to cultivate a better California for all. It supports local arts infrastructure and programming statewide through grants, initiatives, and services. The California Arts Council envisions a California where all people flourish with universal access to and participation in the arts.

Members of the California Arts Council include: Chair Lilia Gonzáles-Chávez, Vice Chair Kathleen Gallegos, Vicki Estrada, Jodie Evans, Jaime Galli, Stanlee Gatti, Donn K. Harris, Alex Israel, Consuelo Montoya, and Jonathan Moscone. Learn more at

The California Arts Council is committed to increasing the accessibility of its online content. For language and accessibility assistance, visit

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