Southern Arts Fund

The Southern Arts Fund (SAF) encourages arts programming and education by distributing grants to artists and community organizations throughout Southern Illinois. Individual artists, nonprofits, governmental organizations, and educational institutions are invited to submit project proposals that demonstrate a strong public service or community outreach component.

The 2022 Southern Arts Fund is made possible by funding from the Illinois Arts Council Agency, the National Endowment for the Arts, Builders Initiative, and regional donors.



The Southern Arts Fund aims to address the following:

  • Expand access to and availability of public art projects and arts funding in the region
  • Encourage sustainable arts and cultural programming by community organizations and public outreach initiatives by artists throughout Southern Illinois
  • Promote regional collaboration between artists, organizations, and communities

2022 SAF Grantees

This year, the SAF distributed more than $40,000 to artists and organizations throughout Southern Illinois, with projects in more than 11 counties.


  • African American Museum of Southern Illinois
    Juneteenth Freedom Celebration
  • Art for All
    Marion Summer Art Program
  • Cade Bursell
    All Species Puppet Parade
  • Cairo Historical Preservation Project
    Spirit of Ward Chapel at AME Church
  • Carbondale Main Street
    Brown Bag Concerts
  • Carbondale Park District
    Jazz in the Park
  • Carbondale United
    Chicago Mass Choir Performance at the Cairo Heritage Gospel and Blues Festival
  • Cobden High School – ESL Club
    Ballet Folclorico Dance Team
  • DeSande R
    The Door of No Return & The Struggle Before Greatness
  • Douglass School Art Place
    Hands in Bridgewood
  • Legacy Training, Inc.
    Just a Vocalist: The Art of the Music Business
  • Madeline Deiters
    Kre8ive Fine Arts Ground and Wall Mural
  • Michael Faris
    A History of Racism
  • Phillip Carrier
    Sculptural Bridges at Touch of Nature Trails
  • Project Human X
    Project Human X Art Festival
  • Robert Ketchens
    A Painted History Mural
  • Sandra Pfeifer
    39 Counties: Save Democracy Tour
  • Shawnee Hills Arts Council
    Hansel & Gretel Revisited
  • Southern Illinois Artist Collective on Race, Equity, and Unity
    A Response to the Legacy of Racial Terrorism in America: A Fine Art Show
  • Southern Illinois Culture and Art in Bilingual Education (SI CABE)
    Latin Summer Nights
  • Stone Soup Shakespeare Theater Company
    A Midsummer Night’s Dream Tour


Application Process

Applications for the SAF will re-open in spring 2023

Artists and organizations wishing to provide thoughtful and accessible arts programming and outreach for their communities are encouraged to apply through our online application (check back in early 2023!).

Applicants must submit a project proposal, budget, and description of community impact. Organizations need to include documentation of their nonprofit status. Artists need to submit samples representing their body of work. Project proposals must demonstrate a significant community outreach component. All grant-funded events must be free and open to the public. 

SAF grants typically range between $500 – $3000. Budgets should demonstrate additional funds supporting the proposed project. 

Applications for the SAF are evaluated each spring on a rolling basis by members of the Southern Illinois Artists Council (SIAC). Projects are evaluated on the following criteria: proposal quality, pursuit of excellence, community impact and need, dedication and follow-through, and community support.


Eligible applicants for the SAF include individual artists, nonprofits, governmental organizations, and educational institutions in the Southern Illinois region.

Projects already receiving funding from the Illinois Arts Council Agency (IACA) are not eligible for SAF funding. 

SAF Partners

The 2022 Southern Arts Fund (SAF) is made possible through the Illinois Arts Council Agency’s Community Arts Access program. The SAF is administered by Artspace 304, with significant funding support from the Illinois Arts Council Agency, the National Endowment for the Arts, Builders Initiative, and regional donors. 

Thank you for supporting our mission to increase opportunities in the arts throughout Southern Illinois!


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