Guidelines & Eligibility
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Accessibility Notice


This year, through a quarterly open application process, Community Arts will award approximately $1 million in grants to individual artists and nonprofit arts and culture organizations in the Bay Area. Grants will be awarded in $5,000, $10,000 and $15,000 amounts.

Community Arts is the only program of the Zellerbach Family Foundation with an open application; all other grantmaking is done by invitation.

The Community Arts program is open to all grantseekers who:
  • Hold a 501c3 nonprofit organization status or are fiscally sponsored individual artists, organizations, collectives, or groups
  • Have an annual organization budget under $2 million
  • Are located in or serving communities in Alameda, Contra Costa or San Francisco Counties
  • Present or produce work within one of the following
    • Primary Disciplines: dance, music, theater, literary arts, visual arts, community festival/fair
    • Sub-Disciplines: circus arts, traditional/folk art, performance art, drag, installation, fiber art, craft, sculpture, painting, photography, puppetry, spoken word, poetry, musical theater, multimedia performance, multidisciplinary, illustration, fiction, non-fiction, festival, cultural fair, other
    • The following disciplines are excluded unless they are a component of multidisciplinary work within one of the Primary Disciplines listed above: film, digital media, radio, podcast, journalism, games, AR/VR, hardware/software, video art
Grantseekers should note the following additional parameters:
  • One submission per application cycle is permitted, but you may submit to multiple application cycles throughout the calendar year
  • More than one grant per calendar year may be awarded, however priority will be given to organizations that have not yet received support in the respective calendar year
  • Returning grantees need to be in good standing with the reporting requirement specified in their grant contract. Grantseekers must also be in good standing with the Arts Loan Fund and the Bay Area Culture Funders for Equity.
Program Priorities

We prioritize support of grantseekers that meet one or more of the following criteria:

  • Create and present work that is for an audience or for community engagement
  • Engage collaborating artists who reside in Alameda, Contra Costa or San Francisco Counties
  • Create work by, with, and for communities that have been historically underrepresented or excluded
  • Engage collaborating artists who represent gender parity, diversity of race/ethnicity, age, socio-economic status, and/or difference in ability
  • Are underfunded artists or arts organizations in Contra Costa County

The Community Arts program does not fund:

  • The creation or development of artwork independent of a public presentation
  • Activities not available to the general public
  • Activities that take place outside of Alameda, Contra Costa or San Francisco Counties
  • Organizations, projects, or programs primarily focused on training or education, or are youth serving, youth focused, or youth performed
  • Industry publications or awards
  • Retroactive funding
  • Debt reduction