Jersey City awards $1M to artists, arts organizations with 2nd round of grants

Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop, together with the city’s council members and the Jersey City Arts and Culture Trust Fund Committee, on Friday announced a historic $1 million award in grants to support 88 artists, educational arts programs and arts organizations that expand the impact and inclusiveness of the arts in Jersey City.

Of the grants awarded, 68 are for arts programs and organizations, with an average award of over $14,000. The remaining 20 fellowship grants will provide individual artists with $5,000 each.

The awardees represent a diverse mix of grantees, with funds to support the growth of Jersey City-based programming.

The Jersey City Arts and Culture Trust Fund Committee unanimously voted the $1 million in grants through on Thursday night.

“We are still the first and only municipality in New Jersey to administer an Arts and Culture Trust Fund, and I hope other municipalities will follow suit as they witness the short- and long-term benefits Jersey City experiences as a result of our investment in the arts — from boosting our local economy and improving residents’ well-being to fostering community and driving tourism and revenue to our businesses,” Fulop said. “Coupled with the major projects underway in Journal Square and elsewhere throughout our city, the fact that we have now allocated nearly $2 million through this voter-approved trust fund is a testament to our efforts and the important progress we are making.”

“We are exceptionally proud to announce our 2023 JCACTF grantees. This year’s grantees spotlight the diversity that makes Jersey City the uniquely special place that it is. We love seeing the continued growth and expansion of our impactful arts programming all across the city, and this second round of grants is key to that,” Elizabeth Phillips-Lorenzo, co-chair of the Arts and Culture Trust Fund Committee, said.

The second allocation of the Arts and Culture Trust Fund provides grants to organizations and individuals with an emphasis on diversity, equity access & inclusion that provide direct public benefits in the following categories: Arts Education, Arts and Culture Programming, and Arts and Culture Operational Support. The grants support a wide range of projects, from theater and music performances to visual arts exhibitions and arts education classes.

An independent review panel of arts professionals evaluated each grant application. The panel then made its recommendations to the Jersey City Arts and Culture Trust Fund Committee.

After Jersey City voters strongly supported implementing the $0.0025 tax levy as a sustainable funding source for arts and culture in 2020, the trust fund was designed through a yearlong public process, with Jersey City’s residents and local artists participating in the visioning. The fund is led by the Trust Fund Committee and administered by the Jersey City Office of Cultural Affairs.

In February 2022, the first round of Arts and Culture Trust Fund grants allocated $850,000 to provide meaningful support to help local artists and arts organizations throughout Jersey City grow and thrive.

To view the full list of grant awardees, please click here.