November 20, 2019 - VIA Art Fund - Announcing the 2019 VIA | Wagner Incubator Grant Recipients
November 20, 2019

VIA Art Fund / Wagner Foundation

Zarouhie Abdalian, Making Art in Public Workshop. Photo Credit: Coleman Center for the Arts

Announcing the 2019 VIA | Wagner Incubator Grant Recipients

VIA Art Fund and Wagner Foundation have awarded grants totaling USD 200,000 to five U.S.-based visual arts organizations for general operating support. The recipients of the inaugural VIA | Wagner Incubator Grant Fund grant are: Burnaway (Atlanta, GA), the Coleman Center for the Arts (York, AL), Midway Contemporary Art (Minneapolis, MN), PS1 – Center for Afrofuturist Studies (Iowa City, IA), and SPACE (Portland, ME). Each organization will receive USD 40,000 for general operating support to be dispersed in USD 20,000 installments over two years.

VIA Program Director Tali Cherizli said: “The first cohort of VIA | Wagner Incubator grantees exemplifies the richness of our cultural landscape. While each organization is utterly unique, all are united by a mission to create innovative contemporary arts programming that resonates at home while steering discourse further afield. This integration of the local with the global infuses our national arts ecosystem with various models for artistic excellence, ensuring that artists based in both rural and urban communities have the platforms they need for developing experimental work.”

Building upon their respective philanthropic missions and achievements, VIA Art Fund and Wagner Foundation partnered in 2019 to establish a USD 1 million Incubator Grant Fund. This fund aims to build a robust and inclusive national arts ecosystem by awarding unrestricted funding to small nonprofit visual arts organizations throughout the United States, with a particular focus on regional diversity.

Wagner Foundation Program Director Caroline Hart added: “Each of the organizations selected in the inaugural year of the Incubator Grant Fund represent the transformative role that cultural institutions can play in their communities. We are proud to support five extraordinary cultural spaces that serve as vital gathering places where communities can build stronger civic bonds, discover their own voices, and listen to the voices of others. Small cultural institutions such as these are uniquely able to foster distinct communities by reflecting diverse histories, locales, and visions.”

2019 Incubator Grantees

Burnaway (Atlanta, GA): A decade-old online publication that has earned international recognition for its focus on the art and artists of the American South.

Coleman Center for the Arts (York, AL): An alternative art space and artist residency that is redefining how to be a visual arts organization in the rural South.

Midway Contemporary Art (Minneapolis, MN): An alternative art space with an internationally-facing program that nurtures the vibrant artistic community in the Twin Cities.

Public Space One – Center for Afrofuturist Studies (Iowa City, IA): A presenting organization and discursive platform that binds the local to the global.

SPACE (Portland, ME): An alternative art space and artist residency whose multidisciplinary programming has made it a regional leader.


About Us
VIA Art Fund is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit philanthropic arts organization founded by an international coalition of individuals and private foundations who believe in the central role art plays in society. VIA’s activities support innovative, ambitious and rigorous works of art and endeavors with far-reaching public impact realized in various forms including institutional production and acquisition, exhibitions, public installations, curatorial research, publications and symposia. Funding artists, curators and arts organizations around the world, VIA Art Fund awards grants in three categories—Artistic Production Grants, Incubator Grants and an annual Curatorial Fellowship grant—that exemplify VIA’s core values of Artistic Production, Thought Leadership, and Public Engagement.

Wagner Foundation is a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit private foundation working to build just and robust community where all people have equitable access to opportunity and the ability to live a life of purpose and dignity. Wagner Foundation supports organizations that improve health equity, increase economic mobility, expand institutional fairness, and strive for cultural transformation. In these efforts, we welcome creative solutions bringing communities together. We are committed to encouraging visionary individuals, as well as arts institutions that expand cultural access. The willingness to explore, ask questions, and support one another makes new solutions possible, transforming culture in the process.

For press inquiries:  press [​at​]

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