Knight Arts Challenge returns to support artists and organizations in Detroit
Since 2008, the Knight Arts Challenge has been instrumental in transforming Detroit’s arts and culture scene by funding hundreds of ideas from artists and organizations. The challenge returned this month to seek submissions from artists, collectives and arts organizations with ideas on how to boost the city’s arts economy and advance the arts.
“Making art costs money and therefore being able to receive funds for these types of non-traditional ideas was only a real catalyst for our organization ”, explains Ryan Myers-Johnson, Founder and Executive Director of the Sidewalk Detroit Festival, an organization that celebrates natural landscapes and builds artistic bridges across Detroit and winner of the 2014 Knight Arts Challenge. “When we started the Sidewalk Festival, we had a bit funding, but for the most part everyone had volunteered – myself included – for years and so receiving funds to pay artists, explore and experiment with ideas in the outdoor space was really essential for we.”
After receiving a KnightArt Challenge scholarship in 2017, D. Cipher, a music collective that is focused on championing a sustainable arts economy and providing the necessary resources for Michigan musicians, has been able to expand its lineup and create pathways for musicians to advance their craft and knowledge. on the industry.
“We are able to program without limits and continue with our distinctive identity, which is to program and reactivate spaces that once had great integrity for arts and culture. [We’re] also capable of giving back in terms of the preservation and development of art, ”says Sophiyah E, Director of Artist Relations at D. Cipher.
The Knight Arts Challenge is now accepting entries from artists and organizations in Detroit for a chance to win a share of the $ 2 million on the table. Wayne Ramocan, co-founder & Vice-president/ D. Cipher Program Manager, sees the opportunity as a chance to make a fundamental leap in ownership.
“Ownership continues to be an important part of our practice as musicians and artists in the community, ”he says. “Without property, our practice and the way we develop it is limited. ”
Listen: D. Cipher and the Detroit Festival Sidewalk share their thoughts on what will take the arts of Detroit to the next level.
The deadline to apply for the Knight Arts Challenge 2021 is July 31. For more information, visit www.knightfoundation.org. Knights Arts is hosting a virtual town hall to answer questions about the application process on July 23.