Arts council accepting applications for project funding

CCA project
William Staffeld/AAP
CCA-funded projects for 2016-17 include “Polyphony,” shown in John Hartell Gallery in September. The interactive installation based on reactive systems was conceived by Jingyang Liu, M.Arch. II ’15; Shining (Christina) Sun, B.Arch. ’17 (pictured), and Yue Gu, M.Arch. ’16.

The Cornell Council for the Arts (CCA) is now accepting grant applications for new arts projects to be exhibited or performed on campus during the 2017-18 academic year.

The CCA Individual Grant Program provides direct financial support each year for the development of new, experimental and exceptional arts projects, whose scope or form requires additional support beyond the resources offered through existing curricula or regular coursework.

The program awards 15 grants of $2,500 each to faculty, academic departments and programs, and 25 grants of $1,000 each to students and student organizations. These awards cover the development of original work and support visits to Cornell by renowned artists and performers. Grant applications for fall 2017 and spring 2018 projects are due by April 14. Further details and guidelines can be found at the CCA website.

Since 1957, the goal of CCA has been to promote art and creative research that are unique to a university environment like Cornell’s, and it has strongly encouraged work that takes an interdisciplinary approach or projects that link various departments on campus. The grant program has supported projects in studio art, design, media, music, creative writing, theater, dance and fashion in the form of exhibitions, performances, lectures, installations, symposia, workshops and other events shared with the Cornell community. Presentation of funded projects is not limited to the main Ithaca campus.

Last year, CCA supported the development and presentation of 40 exhibitions or events representing 15 arts departments and programs on campus, from individual work to department-wide initiatives, funding the creation of new work and sustaining important annual arts events. In the last grant cycle these included the Association of Graduates in Theatre Lab, the Visual Culture Colloquium in the Department of the History of Art and Visual Studies and the Cornell Fashion Collective’s 33rd annual Runway Show. A full list of funded projects can be seen on the CCA events calendar.

“The Cornell Council for the Arts is an invaluable resource, supporting and championing the vibrant community of contemporary artists here,” said Nicholas Fesette, a doctoral candidate in performing and media arts. “The grant funds are especially valuable for undergraduate and graduate students, all of whom create work within what are, quite frankly, bone-crushing schedules that don’t allow a lot of time for fundraising.”

CCA helped fund “From Cell to Cell: The Prison in Television and Performance,” a symposium co-curated by Fesette. Without the grant, he said, “we would have had to eliminate at least one element of the event, which would have made it less interdisciplinary and ultimately less successful.”

Shining (Christina) Sun, B.Arch. ’17, co-created “Polyphony,” an interactive audio-visual installation in Sibley Hall’s John Hartell Gallery. “Our experimental project would not have been realized and shared with so many without CCA’s generous support,” she said. “We are truly grateful that such an interdisciplinary and creative program is here at Cornell to allow us explore individual initiatives outside of the curriculum.”

CCA welcomes inquiries and questions about what types of projects can be funded, and is available 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. weekdays to guide students and faculty through the application process and grant criteria. Contact the CCA office at 607-255-7274 or

Information sessions also will be held to answer questions about the application process March 7 and March 23, both sessions from noon to 1 p.m. in 115 Sibley Hall. To register, or for more information, email

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Rebecca Valli