The Maryland State Arts Council’s Independent Artist Awards (IAAs) recognize achievement by Maryland artists making work independent of an institution or organization. The awards are accompanied by grants that encourage artistic growth and sustained practice.
The 2020 Independent Artist Awards will focus only on the Performing Arts. Artistic categories rotate in a three-year cycle. Visual/Media Arts applications will be accepted in 2021 and Literary Arts applications will be accepted in 2022. Applicants self-select the category which they feel best represents their work.
New this year!
Applicants will be reviewed and awarded based on their residency within five geographic regions:
  • Western – Garrett, Allegany, and Washington counties
  • Washington Metro – Frederick, Montgomery, and Prince George’s counties
  • Baltimore Metro – Carroll, Baltimore, Baltimore City, Anne Arundel, Harford, and Howard counties
  • Southern – Calvert, Charles, and St. Mary’s counties
  • Eastern Shore – Cecil, Kent, Queen Anne’s, Caroline, Talbot, Dorchester, Wicomico, Somerset, and Worcester counties
Within in each region, the following awards will be available:
  • $2,000 Regional Awards – awarded in each region to encourage an artist’s pursuit of promising and/or innovative work
  • $10,000 Regional Awards – awarded in each region to recognize notable artistic achievement by an individual artist
  • $10,000 Regional Collaborative Awards – awarded in each region to recognize notable artistic achievement by two or more artists
All $10,000 Regional winners will be eligible for the State Award(s):
  • $15,000 State Award(s) – awarded to up to two artists or collaborative groups per year to recognize outstanding artistic achievement
The deadline for FY20 applications is November 15, 2019. The application is available in Smart Simple. For more information and the full guidelines, click here.
Questions? Contact Program Director Emily Sollenberger or Laura Weiss for further information.
2017 IAA Recipient Adriane Fang in Grains, Photo by Zachary Handler