Grants available to arts groups, individuals hit by coronavirus

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ) Arts and arts groups hit hard by the coronavirus and its impact on exhibitions, sales, venues, performances, shows and gatherings may be eligible for some financial relief.

LexArts and Blue Grass Community Foundation have created the Arts Resilience Initiative to provide financial relief for artists and arts organizations which have lost hundreds of thousands of dollars because of the pandemics broad reach.

The effort will deploy financial resources to artists and groups in Fayette, Bourbon, Clark, Jessamine, Madison, Scott and Woodford counties, according to a press release from LexArts.

Focused on lost income, the fund will provide one-time relief to eligible artists and arts organizations on a first-come, first-served basis. The maximum award for an individual artist is $500, while the maximum award for arts organizations is $2,000.

Applications from individual artists will be accepted continuously, with grants made on a rolling basis. Applications from arts organizations must be received by April 24.

Leading the list of Arts Resilience Initiative donors is Knight Foundation Donor Advised Charitable Fund at Blue Grass Community Foundation, which is issuing a $50,000 matching opportunity to challenge the community to rise to the occasion and support local arts.

Additional initial gifts include $15,000 from the Jenna and Matthew Mitchell Family Foundation, $11,111.11 from The Groovalution, $10,000 from the EE Murry Family Foundation, $10,000 from The Fund for Greater Lexington, a community endowment at Blue Grass Community Foundation, and a donation from Stockyard, LLC.

“The arts inspire and sustain us in good times and in bad. Theaters, studios and galleries may now be closed, but art has never been more essential,” said Blue Grass Community Foundation President/CEO Lisa Adkins.

“Many artists and arts organizations need support right now to sustain them through this crisis. To help do just that, generous donors have stepped forward to help us create the Arts Resilience Initiative,” Adkins said.

“Someday, hopefully soon, we will be able to once again gather to hear a poem, visit a museum, take in a performance and enjoy a concert. We need to make sure that when that day comes, there is something to hear and see and celebrate.”

A first round of grants totaling $30,000 already has gone out.

“The need is high, and the issue is urgent,” said LexArts Interim President and CEO Ame Sweetall. “We invite those who appreciate and enjoy Lexington’s arts scene to join us in addressing the urgent needs of the artists and arts organizations in our community and ensuring the longevity of the creative sectors of Lexington.”

For more information about the Arts Resilience Fund, eligibility information and online applications for artists and arts organizations, visit


Donate online:

Donate by check: Make checks payable to Blue Grass Community Foundation and indicate that your gift should be directed to the Arts Resilience Initiative. Mail checks to: Blue Grass Community Foundation Attn: Arts Resilience Initiative, 499 E. High Street #112, Lexington, KY 40507

If a business or company would like to join the initiative and provide a corporate gift, email Scott Fitzpatrick at

Categories: coronavirus, Coronavirus Updates, Featured, Local News, News

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