A Sustaining Arts Practice Fund (ASAP)

The Sam Fox School and Pulitzer Arts Foundation established A Sustaining Arts Practice Fund (ASAP Fund) to provide relief to practicing artists, architects, and designers facing significant financial hardship caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The ASAP Fund distributed fifty $2,000 grants to St. Louis-area creative workers selected through an application process. The application was open to individuals living in the City of St. Louis, St. Louis County, Jefferson County, or St. Charles County in Missouri, or in Madison County or St. Clair County in Illinois, who identified with one of the following disciplines:

- Design (fashion, graphic, illustration, industrial arts, object, interactive media, etc.)
- Art (installation, painting, printmaking, performance art, photography, sculpture, sound art, video, social practice, ceramics, textiles, etc.)
- Architecture (architectural design, landscape architectural design, urban design, etc.)

Read the news release about the distribution of grants>>

Details about the application process are featured below, with additional information about eligibility criteria on the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) page. 

About the ASAP Fund

The ASAP Fund is organized by the Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts at Washington University in St. Louis and the Pulitzer Arts Foundation. The fund, totaling $100,000, is drawn from an endowment established by Emily Rauh Pulitzer in 2004 to support joint collaborative projects between the Sam Fox School and the Pulitzer that enhance the creative life of St. Louis. The organizing partners seek to support creative workers who are facing significant financial hardship caused by the current crisis. 

The Fund seeks to sustain the work of practicing artists, architects, and designers who are experiencing financial hardship from lost work, projects, and opportunities as a direct result of the crisis. Lost work may include cancelled teaching opportunities, commissions, talks, performances, contracts, and exhibitions, among others. Funds are unrestricted and may be used for a range of costs at the discretion of the recipient. 

Definition of Practicing Artist, Architect, Designer

Practicing artists, architects, and designers must be able to demonstrate a sustained commitment to their work, careers, and a public audience. We define this group as those making a living from their work, independently or commercially, and those who depend upon the ability to create, exhibit, perform, publish, design, build, or sell work for their livelihood.

Applicants should use their best judgment to frame their practice and be able to document their work by providing, for example, a website, written biography, or any other digital presence—social media, press links, etc.—that demonstrates their work and its relationship to a public.

Application Process

Applications are due on May 29, 2020, with grants awarded in early June, and checks dispersed in July. Applications will be evaluated to ensure basic criteria are met, and reviewed by a selection committee of local practitioners and employees of the sponsoring organizations to select for highest need applications. Due to the anticipated volume of applications, limited funds, and the desire for funding equity among artists of different disciplines and backgrounds, grants may be awarded through a lottery of qualifying applications. Grant recipients may be asked to submit a simple statement describing how the funds supported their work and/or financial well-being. 

ASAP Fund strives to ensure that practitioners of all three disciplines, from across the region, of every race, gender expression, sexual orientation, disability status, and socioeconomic class, have access to this fund. To this end, we are working with community leaders on targeted outreach to communities historically underrepresented and excluded from resources. To ensure equitable distribution of funds, we encourage artists of color, native and Indigenous artists, immigrant artists, artists with a disability, and LGBTQIAP+ artists to apply.

Anyone meeting the eligibility requirements listed in the FAQ can apply here. You can preview a PDF of the application here. If you have any technical issues with the application, please contact ASAPfund@email.wustl.edu. All submitted materials will be kept private. 

All questions related to eligibility and the application process should be directed to ASAPfund@email.wustl.edu.

Pulitzer Arts Foundation

The Pulitzer Arts Foundation is a museum that provides dynamic experiences with art presented in dialogue with its celebrated Tadao Ando building. Offering contemporary and historic exhibitions and programs that inspire new ideas and perspectives, the Pulitzer is a place for contemplation and exchange that brings art and people together. Find out more here>>

Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts at Washington University in St. Louis

A leader in architecture, art, and design education, the Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts at Washington University in St. Louis is committed to advancing those fields through innovative research and creative practice, excellence in teaching, a world-class university art museum, and a deep commitment to addressing the social and environmental challenges of our time. Through the work of its students, faculty, and alumni, the school strives to create a more just, sustainable, humane, and beautiful world.