Since 1992, the foundation has operated a grant programme for visual artists born and/or living and working in Hesse. For the twelfth round of its grant programme (2015/2016), the prerequisites for applicants who have completed studies at an art academy in Hesse have been expanded. Every two years, a jury of five awards twelve-month stays abroad in the form of travel or studio grants. The foundation maintains its own studios in Istanbul, London, New York und Paris.
Travel and studio grants
The travel and studio grant programme of the Hessische Kulturstiftung was established for visual artists working in the areas of painting, graphic arts, installation and sculpture, photography, film, video and mixed media. With this initiative, we are fulfilling one of the foundation’s primary aims as set down in its charter.
The applicants must have been born in the State of Hesse, or have lived in Hesse for at least three years, or graduated from an art academy or a comparable degree programme in Hesse. The grants are intended for artists who have finished their artistic training and already had works exhibited, but are not yet in the state of being established or certain of public recognition as artists. Due to the large number of applicants, necessitating extensive preparations for the jury’s evaluation of the applications, the grants are announced publicly and awarded every two years. The selection is made by five jurors from throughout Germany who are active as freelance curators, at art societies or museums or at academies or universities.
Our programme takes as its orientation the customary system of post-graduate assistance for graduates in the humanities and natural sciences. Before the establishment of this programme, there was virtually no comparable assistance available for artists, i.e. assistance which relieved them of the necessity of earning a livelihood.
Matisse is said to have posed the question: “Should we not encourage young people who have just finished their studies to take a long trip on an airplane?” Naturally, the airplane is not the only possible means of transportation. The purpose and aim of the programme, however, is a change of location and perspective, which can be encouraged through experience and contacts gained within the framework of international exchange. A stay at one of the foundation studios, which were deliberately chosen in cities of high relevance for the visual arts, offers an opportunity for reflection and self-definition.
The possibility of travelling to destinations of one’s choice within the framework of a travel grant likewise provides optimal conditions for intensive study. As a means of distilling the experiences gained during the grant period, the foundation also offers grant recipients financial support for the publication of a catalogue or organization of an exhibition.
In view of the high demand, our continually expanding contacts with Goethe Institutes and other institutions, and the numerous exhibitions staged by our grant recipients abroad, our grant programme is meanwhile one of the most important and renowned assistance programmes for young artists in the State of Hesse.
Each grant consists of 20,500 euros, where necessary with an additional allowance for the artist’s accompaniment by his/ her children and carer, as well as funding in the amount of 7,700 euros for participation in a (self-organized) exhibition and/or the publication of a catalogue.