Frequently Asked Questions

Forecast Public Art offers 4 grants for MN-based artists, divided into categories of grants for mid-career artists (funded by The McKnight Foundation) and grants for early-career artists (funded by the Jerome Foundation).

Mid-Career Artist Grants

Early-Career Artist Grants

  • Early-Career Artist Project Grant – $8,000 to support the creation of a temporary or permanent public artwork anywhere in the state of Minnesota by an emerging Minnesota-based artist.
  • Early-Career Artist Research + Development Grant – $2,500 to support emerging artists in public art-related research and development or with the planning phase of freely accessible public art installation or activity in Minnesota. 4 grants awarded per year.

  • To fund new public art in MN that would be difficult to fund by other means. Commissions and client-based work are not eligible.
  • To support the development of MN-based public artists, giving public artists the chance to innovate and expand skills, range, or recognition.
  • To support artist-initiated public art projects, providing an opportunity for artists to actualize work they conceive and lead.

All applications will use the Submittable online application system. All grants are due in October 18, 2021. Application requirements vary by grant opportunity. Please review requirements listed on the grant pages for the specific opportunity for which you are applying.

What are the deadlines?

  • The closing date for consideration for the 2022 grant cycle will be October 18, 2021.

Forecast actively supports the advancement of grantees through professional development. Grant participants enjoy a series of activities that enhance their learning experience during the grant period. Grantee meetings provide a forum for dialogue among grant recipients focused on their projects, progress, and challenges. Specific meeting themes change on a yearly basis and are designed to cater to the needs of participants during a given grant round. Activities connecting grantees with professional public artists take a variety of formats from facilitated conversations to portfolio reviews.

Pending funding, a short year-end film detailing the work of each grantee is produced, providing participants with documentation of their projects or research. Click here to see examples of recent documentaries of grantee work.

Grantees also receive limited free consulting from Forecast Public Art staff which can be used to troubleshoot technical issues, discuss best practices, strategize next steps, or work through other project, research, or process-related challenges.

  • Forecast’s grants support public art and public art-related activities. Forecast defined public art broadly to support a range of processes, formats, and contexts. See definition of public art below.
  • Applicants must be in the appropriate career stage for the opportunity for which they apply – either mid-career or early-career.
  • An artist may only apply for one grant from Forecast during an annual grant cycle. Applicants who apply during the summer for the McKnight-funded Mid-Career Project Grant cannot apply for other grants in the fall of the same year. Fall applicants can only apply for 1 grant opportunity.
  • Applicant must be a resident of Minnesota, having physically lived in the state for 12 of the past 24 months, and remain a resident throughout the project period.
  • Applicant’s project must be original and not duplicate previous work. Forecast grants do not support remounts or reinstallations, projects that begin prior to the start of the grant year, or projects that are ongoing.
  • No ticket sales or fees may be charged; all events and installations must be freely accessible.
  • Organizations, full-time students, and Forecast Public Art staff, Board, and Committee members are not eligible.
  • Projects may be additionally supported by public or nonprofit agencies, or through in-kind sources, however, commissions are not eligible.
  • Former grantees with outstanding final reports cannot be considered for additional Forecast grant funding until all final reports have been submitted and approved.
  • An artist is not eligible to receive a project grant from Forecast in two consecutive years. An artist can receive a Research & Development grant in consecutive years, or a Research + Development or Professional Development grant followed by a Project Grant.

Mid-career artists are recognized by their peers and arts professionals, have produced an independent body of work and have a record of commissions, projects, or exhibitions. Forecast’s mid-career artist grants are funded by The McKnight Foundation.

An early-career artist is considered as, “showing significant potential, yet…under recognized by their peers and arts professionals. Evidence of some professional achievement is expected but artists with an extensive record of accomplishment are not eligible.” Forecast’s emerging artist grants are funded by the Jerome Foundation and additional details regarding the emerging artist focus can be found here.

Broadly speaking, public art is artwork accessible to the public, regardless of whether it is situated on public or private property, or whether it is supported through public or private funding. It can range from temporary to permanent work, murals to sculptures, interventions to performances. It can also be storytelling, iron pours, sound and light projects, dance and spoken word. It is free and available to all members of a community.

An artist is not eligible to receive a project grant from Forecast in two consecutive years. An artist can receive a Research + Development grant in consecutive years, or a Research + Development or Professional Development grant followed by a Project Grant.

Forecast funds will be distributed in January/February of the grant year. Projects that begin before this timeframe are not eligible for Forecast funding.

Early-Career artist grants and the Mid-Career Professional Development grant have an 11-month timeline. The grant cycle begins in January and final reports are due on November 30.
The Mid-Career Project Grant has an 18-month timeline. The grant cycle begins in January and runs through the spring of the following year.

Forecast’s grants support projects developed and completed during the grant period. Proposals can build upon previous work, however, proposals limited to reinstalling or remounting existing work or continuing an ongoing project are not eligible.

Grant projects can build upon previous work, collaborations and concepts, however, grants are intended to support new work created during the grant period. The proposal must stand on its own as a unique project rather than seek funding for ongoing efforts. Under this guideline, the following are not eligible: another iteration of an established project, the reinstallation or remounting of a completed piece, ongoing work, and work already completed.

Documentation of site permission is required to apply for the Early-Career Artist Project Grant and will be required for McKnight Project Grant finalists. This can entail working with site owners, city administrators, neighbors, or other stakeholders to ensure that all proper permissions have been obtained and all legal regulations are being followed. Forecast cannot fund public art projects that have not obtained necessary permissions. In rare instances there may be exceptions to standard site permissions requirements. Contact Forecast staff at if you have questions regarding site permissions for your proposed work.

Site permission is required for Early-Career Artist Project Grants and McKnight Project grant finalists. Obtaining permission for park locations can take time and applicants for Early-Career Artist Project Grants who are unable to obtain permission by the fall deadline must show documentation that they are in communication with park service staff and are aware of the necessary steps for obtaining required permissions.

In rare cases, site permission may not be required. There are, however, a number of considerations regarding permission:

  • If your project involves a trailer or structure: Does it fit within trail/road regulations?
  • If your project involves sound, lighting, etc.: What are the legal limits (for noise, etc.) and does your project stay within those?
  • In terms of the route: Will you be stopping at points along the way? If yes, permissions might be required for sites where activities or stops occur (or dual permissions based on the locations of stops – where sites cross park / city property).

In limited cases where a formal permission letter is not required, applicants must submit a document showing due diligence regarding permissions requirements and considerations and/or correspondence documenting that formal permissions are not required.

Artist-initiated projects are conceived and led by the applicant artist(s). Ideally, funds support an artist’s “dream project,” public art projects that may be difficult to fund by other means, or work that stretches an artist in terms of scope, scale, professional development, innovation, etc. Artists can work with organizational partners, however, the relationship cannot be an artist-client or artist-commissioner relationship.

As long as work is freely accessible, it can take place in a traditional arts venue, however, projects that reach beyond traditional arts audiences/venues tend to be more competitive with Forecast’s grant panels.

No. Forecast’s grants cannot support commissions (public or private) or client work of any kind.

No. Organizations are not eligible for Forecast’s grants.

Forecast’s grants are selected by a panel of public art professionals who range from artists to community organizers, curators, administrators, and scholars. The panel changes every year, but always includes local, regional, and national representatives. Given this geographic range, all panelists will not have the same local knowledge and applicants are encouraged to keep this breadth of experience and geography in mind when writing their proposals.

Forecast has four selection criteria that drive our panel’s decision-making:

  • Quality & Clarity of Proposal – the strength of the proposed idea, clear consideration of of the scope of work proposed and the applicant’s ability to see it through to completion.
  • Value of Project to Artist’s Development – whether emerging or mid-career, successful applicants have a combination of relevant experience for their career stage and potential for development, innovation, deepened practice, or new growth. Forecast’s grants are  specifically oriented toward supporting artists seeking to begin, establish or expand careers in the field of public art.
  • Benefit to the Community – this can take many forms from enjoyment to beautification, civic engagement, filling a need or meaningful collaboration. Community can be defined in a variety of ways and applicants should speak to how their work will benefit their defined community.
  • Quality of Work Samples – this criteria relates both the quality of the work shared as well as the degree to which the work samples support the artist’s ability to complete the proposed work.

Applicants will be notified by mid-December.

Forecast regularly shares opportunities via our website and newsletter, as well as on Facebook and Twitter.