Over the years, the Firefly Arts Collective (FAC) has been proud to provide grant support to Firefly artists to enable them to express and fulfill their varied creative visions. These grants are intended to support and promote radically-expressive, community-based, interactive and/or collaborative projects that help define and shape the creative core of the event.
The Legacy Grant is provided to support existing projects that have previously appeared at Firefly. Art can be exposed to many elements at Firefly — mud, rain, sun, and most of all, people — and this grant is designed to provide funding to help with wear and tear produced by this exposure.
Proposals will be evaluated based on the following factors:
- Thoughtfulness: how well thought out is the project’s relationship with participants?
- Creativity: how original and awe-inspiring is your project?
- Feasibility: how feasible is this project?
Advice for Prospective Artists
After many years of reviewing Grants and seeing what succeeds in the woods, the Art Grant Committees have collated the following tips:
- We do not fund art intended primarily to be enjoyed by the camp showing the art. Make sure to explain how your project can be experienced by everyone at firefly, not just your camp.
- We are not inclined to fund ball pits unless the design is significantly creative, impressive, and different from what has been done before.
- Please note that electronic and mechanical projects have a high rate of failure in the woods. If your project involves soldering, software, or moving parts, please put extra effort into convincing us the project will succeed.
Grants are currently available for the amount of $100, $300, $500, or $1000
Summary of Deadlines
- TBA: Legacy Grant applications open
- Apr 30: Legacy Grant applications due.
- May 28: Legacy Grants awarded.
- July 4-9: Firefly Event
- TBA: Grant Documentation Deadline
Grant Disbursement Schedule
- 75% – once the signed contract is received.
- 25% – after Firefly, confirmed site clean-up, and documentation received
Once the signed contract is received, you will receive 75% of your awarded amount; the remaining 25% will be distributed once the project is completed and documentation is received, (see question #13 of the Application). Your project will be considered to be complete once proof and documentation have been delivered to, and reviewed by, the Art Grant Review Committee.
Submitting Your Application
Please submit your application as a PDF file via our grant application web portal.
There’s no standard format as long as you answer all of the required questions below! Please do NOT include any identifying information about the artist — our committee process is screened so that all applicants are anonymized. Your account provides all of the information we need.
Be as visual as possible. Sometimes it’s extremely difficult to tell exactly what awesome thing you’re envisioning from text, and pictures go a long way towards making your vision clear. Scanned pencil drawings, photographs, or CAD models are all helpful in conveying what you envision.
- Experience Design: Tell us about your project. Please include the concept, the scale, how people are to interact with it (is it visual? aural? tactile?), and anything else relevant to the experience. Please include any relevant drawings, sketches, images, or inspirations.
- Technical Design: How will you actually build this? What sort of materials, hardware, tools, etc. will you need? How will it be constructed? Please include relevant sketches and diagrams. The more detailed, the better!
- Installation Plan: How will you get your project to its placed site? How will you weatherproof it? How will you make sure you complete it before Thursday? Convince us that you can make this project happen in the middle of the Vermont woods in July.
- Risk Analysis: Please perform a risk analysis. What safeguards do you have in place? How do you plan to protect the project or participants during the day or night and from the project’s correct function or error? What are the potential health hazards or danger to the environment? Please include a detailed safety plan if the project requires structural, combustible, or other qualities of risk. Some large-scale art, or projects utilizing fire, for example, may be subject to greater scrutiny/further questions from the Art Grant Review Committee. ANY Art that incorporates fire MUST be reviewed by the Fire Core. For further ideas about safety of public art, please see the Burning Man website.
- Project Timeline: Attach (as a table) a timeline for your project. We want to know that you’ve thought through how long this will take to build. Include the required dates included in the Summary of Deadlines.
- Project Budget: Attach a separate table with an itemized budget that lists all of your expected expenses (including material costs, equipment rentals, consumables, etc.) Please also list a separate table showing how you plan to cover these costs — what portion of the expenses will be covered by the grant? How much from other funding sources (fundraising, personal funds, etc.)? You may provide several proposed funding models, one for each grant tier you apply for. Remember — you can apply for multiple funding tiers, but there is no partial funding.
- Project Placement: Where would you like your project to be placed? Priority will be given to returning projects, though final placement will not determined until Placement Weekend in June.
- Leave No Trace Plan: Please describe your LNT Plan.
- Fire Plan: If your project incorporates fire in any way, please describe what safety measures you are taking. You will also have to get approval from Fire Safety (FAST). In general, we do not allow artists to burn projects as a way of dismantling their project.
A note about tickets
In addition to the donation of your time and efforts, all attendees and their helpers must apply for their own tickets to the event. If an artist or a mission-critical team-member is put on the waitlist, one (1) ticket will be allotted to the art project to guarantee that it can be realized at Firefly.
- Am I required to register for a ticket? Yes! All participants in the Firefly Arts Festival must register for a ticket.
- If my grant proposal is accepted will I still have to pay for my ticket? Yes! All participants are expected to pay for their ticket.
- What if my project needs more than one person to execute it? Will my entire group be guaranteed tickets to the event? If the grant recipient or a critical team member is put on the wait list, each grant recipient can request one (1) discretionary ticket. The ticket may be allocated to any individual on the grant team (not just the contact). Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for discretionary tickets.
Art Grant review committee
In order to create an impartial review, applications will be blinded before they are submitted to the Art Grant Review Committee. The committee members will score each proposal based on the criteria listed above.
Feel free to reach out to us at email@example.com if you have any questions!