COVID-19 Work Projects

The application deadline for COVID-19 Work Projects has passed. We are working to generate more funding for the program. You may submit an application to be placed on the waitlist should we have an opportunity to fund more projects. 

Información en español

The Office of Arts and Culture and Create Boulder are partnering to launch this program, designed to support artists at work to bolster the “social infrastructure” of our community: those assets that bind us together as residents of Boulder. In the spirit of the Work Projects Administration of the 1930s, this program will quickly deliver funding to artists who have lost gigs, had contracts or events cancelled, been laid off, or have otherwise been put in a vulnerable position due to the necessary restrictions to control the COVID-19 Pandemic. At the same time, the projects will leverage the talent of artists to unite and vitalize our neighborhoods.

The Creative Neighborhoods: COVID-19 Work Projects are made possible through matching funds from Create Boulder, a Colorado non-profit arts advocacy organization founded in 2016 with the goal of leveraging support for the arts from the city of Boulder and stimulating both corporate and individual arts philanthropy.

Each project will be a purchase of artist services to create experiences for their neighbors with the goal of either a) helping their neighbors stay connected during the restrictions, or b) after restrictions are lifted, helping people to reconnect, recover and adjust to new social conditions. To get your creativity and originality flowing, here are some examples from around the globe:

Durning the time of the COVID-19 pandemic and physical distancing, we recognize a critical role for the arts in responding to, documenting, and building community through this crisis. These resources may help in developing projects that are relevant and responsive to our community and the experience of COVID-19 emergency:

This project is part of the Creative Neighborhoods strategy found in the City of Boulder’s Community Cultural Plan, which includes the shared vision for culture: Together, we will craft Boulder’s social, physical, and cultural environment to include creativity as an essential ingredient for the well being, prosperity, and joy of everyone in the community.


The Office of Arts + Culture and Create Boulder are together contributing $40,000
Number of Projects: 66
Project Fund Amount: $599.00
Process: first come, first served (for eligible applicants)


It is a priority for this program that the application will not be a burden on the applicant.

  1. The applicant must be a Boulder resident. For the purposes of this program, a “resident” of Boulder is defined as anyone who can demonstrate their primary residence has a street address with a zip code beginning with “803”.
  2. Though not part of the Grant Program, applicants will be expected to meet all the general eligibility requirements described in the Boulder Arts Commission’s Grants Program.
  3. The applicant must be a practicing artist in any of the arts disciplines described by the City of Boulder Revised Code Title 14-1-1: Arts Grant Program.
  4. The applicant must demonstrate that, in their arts business, they have recently lost work, had contracts cancelled, had shows or performances cancelled, been laid off, or otherwise lost pay or wages due to the restrictions put in place by local, county, state, and Federal government or health agencies in response to the COVID-19 Pandemic. This will be a flexible application requirement: an email, a screenshot of a website showing a cancellation, or any other simple documentation will be accepted.
  5. The applicant must agree to use the project fund in the spirit of benefiting their neighbors:
    • Create work in a vantage point or within earshot from a public right-of-way, on an open and no cost digital platform, or otherwise be made publicly available.
    • Comply with all local, state, and Federal laws and regulations. Here are some policies that may impact your ideas:

Please note while that this application does not inquire about an applicant’s wages or income, we do encourage people interested in these funds to consider their situation carefully before applying. If you have not been severely impacted by the crisis, please muster the community spirit to not apply and pass along this limited opportunity to artists in our community who are in a vulnerable position. Contact if you have any questions.


Staff from the Office of Arts and Culture will review applications for adherence to the guidelines above. The applications will be reviewed in the order in which they are received. Funding will be approved for eligible applications until the funding runs out. Applicants will be notified within 2-4 business days of their status.

Scope of Work

After being approved, the applicant will be required to agree to the following scope of work as part of the commission. More details will be provided upon approval. The artist must deliver to the Office of Arts and Culture:

  1. A 1-page project plan that describes a) the nature of the art project you will provide for your neighborhood, b) the schedule for the project, c) a general budget that includes your pay and materials, and d) your plans to meet the goals listed in the introduction above.
  2. Provide payment instructions to pay by credit card. Or, establish a vendor profile with the City of Boulder to receive an electronic funds transfer.
  3. A commitment to complete the project by December 31, 2020.
  4. Regular updates on progress:
    • Email update two to four weeks before you are scheduled to launch: How is the project coming together? Any surprises? Although not required, do you anticipate promoting the project? Anything else we should know?
    • Project documentation in the form of digital images, video, and/or audio files. Also, provide any feedback from neighbors.
    • A reflection letter and evaluation once the project is ended.

In addition, the artist may be asked to participate in an exhibition or artist talk in the future.

How to Apply

The application deadline has passed but you can submit an application to be placed on our waitlist.

Application Deadline

The deadline to apply is 11:59 p.m. on April 23, 2020. Applicants should expect to hear from the Office of Arts and Culture within 2-4 days of submitting application.

For more information, please email