SALVAGE RITUALS, Tim Smith Stewart & Jeffrey Azevedo. Photo: Jeffrey Azevedo.

Photo: SALVAGE RITUALS, Tim Smith Stewart & Jeffrey Azevedo. Credit: Jeffrey Azevedo.

Special Initiatives are structured to address the needs of the Network while advancing NPN’s work to advance racial and cultural justice in the arts, build artists’ power, and foster systems change in arts and philanthropy.

Initiatives shift depending on the needs of the network.

For Artists

Documentation & Storytelling Fund

The NPN Documentation & Storytelling Fund supports artists’ ability to document, promote, and share their work, ideas, and selves, as well as to create pathways to new opportunities for career advancement, such as creating work materials for a grant or sharing stories and ideas to develop collaborative relationships. The fund provides up to $3,000 of support for artists who have received an NPN Artist Engagement Fund or Creation & Development Fund between July 1, 2022 and March 1, 2024 and have not previously received a Documentation & Storytelling award.

View awards:
2023 recipients
2022 recipients
2021 recipients
2020 Fall recipients
2020 Spring recipients

Fiscal Year 2023:

  • Artists:
    • 24 artist projects (214 individual artists)
    • 83% led by artists of color
    • 13% of lead artists identify as trans
  • Direct Subsidies: $71,900
  • Funds Leveraged: $114,330

The Documentation & Storytelling Fund is supported by the Doris Duke Foundation.

Doris Duke Foundation

Peer-to-Peer Development

Through a partnership with Artists U, NPN supports artists for their time to participate in peer-to-peer career development. Facilitators are practicing artists. Participation is open to artists who have recently been supported through NPN National and Southern Programs.

  • Workshop Series: Sustaining In A Time of Change
    This four-week workshop series is an opportunity to build clarity around artistic practice and the resources that sustain it. It is community organizing, creating positive and rigorous conversations across artistic disciplines, ages, and cultures. And it is specific and practical: the principles, tools, and prompts artists use to make sustainable lives and to make the art and impact that matters most to them.
  • Monthly Project Club
    Building on the Sustaining In A Time of Change learnings, Project Club participants meet monthly over eight months to delve deeper into a values-centered approach to project development, networking, resource sharing, and building sustainable careers.
For NPN Partners

Community Fund

The NPN Community Fund supported up to $5,000 for activities that deepened partnerships, equitable practices, and opportunities for civic engagement, self-representation, and joy. The initiative concluded in 2020 when program goals were incorporated into the Artist Engagement Fund.

View past awards

Peer Exchange Fund

In response to the need for NPN Partners to reconnect, NPN is launching the Peer Exchange Fund (PEF). The NPN Peer Exchange Fund supports relationship-building, knowledge sharing, collaboration, learning, and practice through the support of NPN Partner to Partner exchange. NPN Partners can apply for up to $1,000.

Log in to the NPN Partner Portal for program guidelines and more information.

The Peer Exchange Fund is generously supported by the Doris Duke Foundation.

Doris Duke Foundation

Professional Development Initiative

NPN’s vision includes a strong network that maximizes collective wisdom, resources, and leadership. The Professional Development Initiative supports up to $3,000 for the professional development of NPN Partner staff, giving cultural leaders time, space, and resources for personal renewal and professional growth.

Next Deadline:
November 13, 2023 for projects beginning between January 1, 2024 and December 31, 2025

View awards:
2024 Spring
2020 Fall

Log in to the NPN Partner Portal for program guidelines and more information.

The Professional Development Initiative is supported by the Doris Duke Foundation.

Doris Duke Foundation

Photo: Word Becomes Flesh, Marc Bamuthi Joseph

“My relationship with NPN has been essential in the breath and breadth of my development of new performance language. No other organization has been more instrumental in the rise in slope of my career path. I am deeply indebted to NPN for fostering the construction of alternative artistic media and enriching our national community of venues, audiences, and artists in search of artistic evolution. In a time when a conservative political environment is active in stifling emergent voices, NPN is boldly turning the volume up.”

Marc Bamuthi Joseph
2002 NPN Creation Fund Recipient for Word Becomes Flesh