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Artistic Innovations Grants Award $255,000+ to Nineteen Projects

man in hat sits at easel by river

Mid-America Arts Alliance Awards more than $255,000 for Art Projects through Artistic Innovations Grants

As part of its annual Artistic Innovations grant program, Mid-America Arts Alliance (M-AAA) recently awarded nineteen grants totaling $255,418. These awards grant up to $15,000 for the creation of artworks and creative projects by artists and nonprofit organizations across M-AAA’s region of Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma, and Texas.

The following grantees were selected from 110 applications requesting more than $1.4 million and were peer reviewed by panels organized by artistic discipline. Among those selected are a number of first-time grant recipients, including Missouri artist Steven Snell and the Merryman Performing Arts Center in Kearney, NE. For a few, this grant represents one of several for the organization, including four-time recipient Allison Orr Dance/Forklift Danceworks from Austin, TX, and three-time recipients TheatreSquared from Fayetteville, AR, and Perpetual Motion Modern Dance from Oklahoma City, OK.

Todd Stein, President and CEO of M-AAA, said, “The Artistic Innovations program encourages the spirit of experimentation and exploration, and the FY23 grantees exemplify this spirit. The artists and arts organizations in our region continue to inspire through the creativity of their projects.” M-AAA began awarding Artistic Innovations grants in 2012 and has given more than $2.1 million to 170 projects across the region.

Artist Steven Snell, a first-time grant recipient, was awarded $15,000 for his video series Adventure Art on the Mighty MO’. In it, he will create paintings to share stories of wonder, beauty, history, and updated observations on his canoe trip down the entire Missouri River. Snell says, “It means so much to receive this kind of support. It will significantly help with video production costs, audience outreach, and project possibilities. I can be as ambitious with this project as I dream!”

FY2023 Artistic Innovations grant recipients (alphabetical order):

M.J. Alexander, Oklahoma City, OK, $15,000

Art League Houston, Houston, TX, $15,000

Karen Castleman, Rogers, Arkansas, $15,000

Contemporary Art Museum, St. Louis, MO, $15,000

Glass Half Full Theatre, Austin, TX, $15,000

Kinetic Ensemble, Houston, TX, $8,600

Regina Klenjoski Dance Company, Wichita, KS, $15,000

Naima Lowe, Tulsa, OK, $15,000

LUX Center for the Arts, Lincoln, NE, $6,000

Sonny Mehta/Riyaaz Qawwali, Houston, TX, $15,000

Robert M. Merryman Performing Arts Center, Kearney, NE, $11,218

National Blues Museum, St. Louis, MO, $15,000

Erika Nelson, Lucas, KS, $12,000

Allison Orr Dance/Forklift Danceworks, Austin, TX, $15,000

Perpetual Motion Modern Dance, Oklahoma City, OK, $15,000

Public Poetry, Houston, TX, $7,600

Steven Snell, Kansas City, MO, $15,000

Theatre Squared, Fayetteville, AR, $15,000

The Union for Contemporary Art, Omaha, NE, $15,000


Read full project descriptions.