The Arts Council for Long Beach just added an exciting new opportunity to its roster of grant-giving: a Risk and Innovation Grant, which was announced at the Arts Council’s October 9 State of the Arts event.

“This funding offers a rare opportunity: to take a chance on something,” Arts Council Executive Director Victoria Bryan said. “It’s not often a grantor will fund something untested and brand new. But that’s exactly what this is for – creative problem-solving for community issues and experiments in art.”

The $5,000 Risk and Innovation Grant provides an opportunity to bring innovation to our communities through arts-based problem solving. It also offers support to artists for experimental, career-advancing growth. Long Beach-based artists using any medium – whether it’s music, sound, visual arts, dance or another expression – are eligible to apply.

The funding comes from an innovative source as well: Arts Council President Marco Schindelmann, Arts Council Executive Director Victoria Bryan, former Board Member Joe Herron, and Arts Council volunteers David and Terry Braunstein conceived of the grant and are funding it with their personal money out of a pure passion for arts innovation.

The $5,000 grant will fund innovation in Long Beach through one of two approaches:

1. Creative Solutions: Existing approaches are proving insufficient to crack many of the major difficulties we face. Solutions to large, complex issues are rarely clear, but experimentation and new, arts-based approaches may help create breakthrough change. Through the Risk and Innovation Grant, the Arts Council invites ideas with transformative potential. We aim to take risks on less proven approaches and explore new solutions, in recognition that innovation requires flexibility, iteration and risk.

2. Creative Growth: Many factors can limit an artist’s opportunity to expand their practice. This grant encourages the development of experimental, risk-taking creative projects that advance an artist’s career and expose them to new audiences.

The new Risk and Innovation Grant Application and Guidelines can be found at http://www.artslb.org/services/grants/