What is the maximum grant amount?

The Cultural Trust offers grants of up to $15,000 to assist emerging and early-career artists of exceptional talent to take up professional development opportunities, usually overseas.

The maximum grant amount was increased from $10,000 to $15,000 as of October 2022 and applies to all future funding rounds.

How do you classify emerging or early-career artist?

As a general guide, the Trust considers emerging and early career artists to be an artist practicing within 10 years of graduating from an undergraduate degree (or equivalent). However, this does not mean that applicants need to have attained formal qualifications in their area of practice to be considered for a grant. Where an applicant does not have formal training, the beginning of their practice is commonly marked by a significant recognition of the artist’s work and the artist’s vocational commitment to ongoing practice.

An artist who has exercised a number of roles within an art form is deemed to have continuous practice within that art form. That is, an applicant whose art form is visual arts and whose career began in art making and subsequently shifted to art curation will be regarded as having continuous practice in the visual arts. In calculating their years of practice, the nominee should combine these two periods. 

An artist whose career commenced as an actor and who subsequently shifted their focus exclusively to stage direction would be regarded as having a continuous theatre practice. A dancer who has moved into choreography will be regarded as having continuous dance practice.

What if there has been a break in my artistic practice?

The Trust acknowledges that there may be a period when arts professionals have withdrawn from artistic practice. A break may have been required to care for children or others. This period can be considered when calculating years of practice.

For example, if a musician worked for five years, then took two years off to help raise a child, and then returned to working as a musician for four more years before applying to the Trust, their overall years of practice would be 9 (not 11).

Similar consideration will be afforded to forced career breaks due to injury, ill health or, indeed, a global pandemic that materially restricts the capacity of an arts professional to work.

Do I need to submit a hard copy application?

No. All parts of your application, including the support materials, must be submitted through our online grant management system, GivingData. 

Will I need to supply support material and work samples?

Yes. Links to samples of your work must be included in your online application.

As a guide:

  • Musicians should include at least 20 minutes of recorded material.
  • Visual artists should include between 12—20 images. If your practice includes moving image art, you should include a sample in video format.
  • Performing artists must include up to 10 minutes of footage showing a variety of work and should also include reviews if possible. Photographs only are not suitable.
  • Filmmakers should include a showreel up to 10 minutes long to give a sense of the scope and variety of your work, and one full-length piece.

Support Material should be submitted via a URL that directly links to where an example of your work may be read, viewed or heard. Your URL(s) must be easily accessible and able to be played on a variety of operating systems and devices. Please check to ensure that the file is not too large to preview or open.

You can link to a specific page on your website that displays examples of your work. If you don’t have a website, there are a number of free and easy-to-use online hosting services, most of which allow you to password-protect material if necessary.

Once my application is submitted, when can I expect to hear back from the Trust?

Once you have submitted your online application, you will receive an automated receipt by email. This email will include an approximate date for receiving an email notifying you of the outcome of your application. 

So long as you have received this receipt and your project meets our guidelines, you can be confident your application will be considered.

During assessment, one of our Cultural Trust staff may contact you to request further information or clarification.

What are my chances of success?

Demand is high for these grants, and we receive many more applications than we can fund. As a guide, about 20–30 per cent of applications are successful in each round.

Can I reapply in future if I'm unsuccessful this time?

Yes, but only if you are seeking money for a different project. If you decide to reapply you should check that your new project meets the objectives and priorities of the Trust. 

I'm a member of a group, e.g. a quartet, can we submit one application?

No. Each member of your group must complete an individual application. When submitting your online application, please make a note so that we know to consider you as a group.

Does the Trust support unstructured/self-directed study and residencies?

The Trust will not support applications where the sole focus is an unstructured/self-directed study program. However, we welcome well-researched travel proposals that include unstructured/self-directed opportunities alongside structured professional development programs. 

What’s the difference between the Cultural Trust and the Foundation?

The Ian Potter Cultural Trust:

  • Awards grants to individuals
  • Awards commissions and individual artist grants solely in the cultural and arts fields.

The Ian Potter Foundation:

  • Awards grants solely to organisations that have eligible tax status
  • Awards grants in the areas of the Arts, Community Wellbeing, Early Childhood Development, Environment, Public Health Research and Medical Research.

Please refer to the Foundation's website for further information.

Do I need to have confirmed all parts of my project when I submit my application?

Yes. We require that you submit letters of confirmation from all individual(s) or organisation(s) with which you will be undertaking professional development as per your application.

In the circumstance of a course only providing acceptance confirmations after our application deadline, artists should contact the education provider to obtain a 'conditional' confirmation letter.

If there are any issues in obtaining letters of confirmation by the closing date, please contact Cultural Trust staff to discuss.

Is there an age requirement for applicants?

Yes. To be eligible for funding, applicants must be a minimum of 18 years old by the project start date. 

What art forms do the Emerging Artist Grants support?

The Trust's Emerging Artists Grants program supports artists working across all art forms and disciplines. This includes but is not limited to animation, craft, dance, design, ceramics, experimental and interdisciplinary art, jewellery, land art, metalwork, moving image, multimedia, music, printmaking, sculpture, tapestry and theatre.

We require applicants to classify their area of practice under ten broad headings for internal purposes. However, if your practice area does not fit neatly into a category, this does not mean you are ineligible. Please select the 'Other' category and specify your arts practice accordingly.

  1. Community Arts
  2. Conservation and Moveable Cultural Heritage
  3. Craft (this includes jewellery, metalwork, tapestry, etc)
  4. Dance
  5. Design (this includes fashion, graphic design, etc)
  6. Writing and Literature
  7. Multimedia (this includes film, television, radio, moving image work, etc)
  8. Music
  9. Performing Arts
  10. Visual Arts

Can I include an artist fee to myself as an expense in my budget?

The Trust acknowledges that artists must be paid for their work. However, as the purpose of the Emerging Artist Grants program is to support professional development opportunities, grants will not be awarded for the purpose of earning an artist fee.

Should I discuss my application with someone from the Trust?

Discussing your application with someone from the Trust is not a requirement. If you have questions not answered on this website, please contact us, and one of our Cultural Trust staff will be happy to assist.

Do you provide feedback on applications?

No. Due to the number of applications received by the Cultural Trust each round, we cannot provide individual feedback on unsuccessful applications.

Will the Trust fund the full cost of the project?

We require the applicants to contribute a reasonable amount themselves and encourage applicants to seek additional funding from other sources.

Can I apply again if I've already received a grant from the Trust?

Demand for grants has increased in recent years. As a result, applications from artists who have completed and acquitted a Cultural Trust grant within the past two years will not be considered. 

Priority is always given to first-time applicants. The Trust only considers further applications if the applicant's previous grant(s) have been fully acquitted. You should also check to ensure that your new project meets the objectives and priorities of the Trust.


Will the Trust provide grants for postgraduate study courses?

The Trust will consider providing support for artists wishing to undertake postgraduate courses overseas when:

  • The postgraduate course has no equivalent in Australia.
  • The postgraduate course has a strong focus on professional development and artistic practice. 

The Trust will not award support for:

  • Postgraduate courses where the sole focus is research
  • Postgraduate study is being undertaken through an Australian institution
  • Undergraduate degree courses.

Where does the money come from?

The Ian Potter Cultural Trust receives all of its funding from The Ian Potter Foundation.

Can I also apply to other foundations or trusts that might be interested in funding my project?

Yes. The Ian Potter Cultural Trust is happy to support projects in partnership with other funders. Your project budget should include a breakdown of funding sources and amounts, including notes on whether these funds are confirmed and, if not, when confirmation is expected.

Are there exceptions for applicants who aren't Australian Citizens or Permanent Residents?

No. The Cultural Trust is only able to award grants to Australian citizens or Permanent Residents due to the requirements of Australian taxation law.

Still have questions?

Contact us if you have a question that is not answered in our FAQs.