ECA Artist Grants Initiative

Supporting Our Artists While Cultivating Community

Easthampton City Arts (ECA) is deeply committed to our community of artists and we are actively invested in the meaning, value, and impact that arts and culture have here in Easthampton and throughout our region. For 15 years, ECA has served our community in receptive, responsive, and innovative ways and in accordance with the evolving needs of our public.

Within the context of this time of pandemic, we recognize that our community of artists is more economically vulnerable than ever before and that the financial circumstances that individuals are facing are broad, complex, and diverse. Within the current climate of renewed and revitalized attention toward social and racial justice, ECA is committed to continue to a) develop and deepen our work to serve local and regional artists from a diverse range of racial, ethnic, and cultural backgrounds and perspectives, b) to further expand our outreach and marketing efforts so as to diversify our audience members in terms of the towns and cities we are reaching throughout the region, and c) to diversify our organizational leadership in terms of race, ethnicity, and age, so as to more accurately reflect the communities we serve.

In the spirit of our ongoing commitment to our artists and our community, we are pleased to offer Easthampton City Arts Artist Grants Initiative. This first-of-its-kind program at ECA provides grants to individual artists in exchange for an event, workshop, or other arts-based activity–presented either through a virtual platform or safely outdoors while following all current health-related protocols–that serves to engage others and inspire community. This particular approach serves to activate our new, shared platforms for interaction during this time of social distancing with the visual arts, poetry, music, performance, and educational opportunities that we all value and appreciate so much.

ECA extends our immense gratitude to all the dedicated individuals, local businesses, and community organizations that have contributed throughout the years to creating our community of arts and culture that we all hold dear. Creating this grants program is rooted in this longstanding foundation–and is an opportunity for ECA to join the larger ecosystem of artist relief efforts to help provide some assistance as we all work together to navigate this unprecedented time. We also acknowledge Mayor Nicole LaChapelle for her leadership, guidance, and support as we worked to develop the ECA Artist Grants Initiative.

Overview & Terms

Easthampton City Arts (ECA) is pleased to announce the 3rd and final phase of the ECA Artist Grants Initiative. Building upon our first and second round of grantswhich has supported a total of 35 grantees with $15,000 in mini-grantsPHASE III will award 15 artists with $400 grants (totaling an additional $6,000). And, by the close of the spring, ECA will have directly distributed $21,000 to 50 individual artists through this program alone. 

*PLEASE NOTE: The 3rd and final phase of the ECA Artist Grants Initiative will be rolling out significantly differently than the first two phases. Please read the following details thoroughly to make sure this program is right for you and the work you are looking to present.

While the first two phases of the program supported artists to create and produce their own individual programs, this next phase of the ECA Artist Grants Initiative will support musicians, performers, poets, and visual artists to present their work to a live, safely-distanced audience during a five-week spring festival that will take place on Saturday afternoons from April 24 — May 22 in The Spot Lot, a newly transformed parking lot of polka dots at 50 Payson Avenue in the heart of the Cottage Street Cultural District.

ECA will organize and produce the events, provide extensive on-site support, manage contact tracing procedures and additional health and safety protocols, and extensively promote the series.

ECA will also provide the following to participating artists, as needed:

  • Staging
  • Sound assistance for musicians, performers, and poets, if needed)
  • Exhibition walls for visual artists

This springtime series is also being generously supported by our partners at River Valley Coop and through the MASS DOT Winter Streets Grant.

As a municipal organization within the Planning Department of the City of Easthampton, ECA is committed to serving artists whose work engages and cultivates community. As an established arts institution that has served our city and our greater region for the past 15 years, we are deeply committed to continually growing, expanding, and developing our impact and our reach, through cultivating new and existing collaborative partnerships with artists and community organizations throughout the area.

Priority consideration will be given to BIPOC* artists and artists experiencing financial need in response to the economic impacts of the pandemic.

*BIPOC = Black, Indigenous, People of Color

BACKGROUND: A total of $21,000 is being granted to local artists through the ECA Artist Grants Initiative. ECA committed the original $10,000, a Go Fund Me page was set up to raise an additional $5,000, and River Valley Coop is generously matching these community-generated funds with an additional $5,000. We recently added an additional $1,000 from funds raised through the “Entering Easthampton” pins initiative–for a total of $21,000. 


 February 22

  • Announce PHASE III of the ECA Artist Grants Initiative

 March 18 @ 11:59pm

  • Deadline to apply for PHASE III

 March 31

  • All applicants will be notified

 April 25 – May 22

  • All PHASE III projects will be presented during the Spot Lot Spring Festival.
    • Specific dates and schedules will be arranged with each individual grantee.


  • All local and regional artists are eligible to apply;
  • Musicians, performers, poets, and visual artists are welcome and encouraged to apply;
  • All selected applicants must present their work during the spring series of events, as described above;
  • All selected artists must submit a W9 in order to be compensated.

Selection Committee

The selection committee for PHASE II includes the following individuals: 

Pasqualina Azzarello – City Arts Coordinator, Easthampton City Arts

Jeffrey Bagg – City Planner, City of Easthampton

Jon Carroll – ECA Coordinating Committee Member & Musician

Tracey Eller – Chair, ECA Coordinating Committee & Photographer

Sindy Mojica -ECA Coordinating Committee Member & Easthampton High School’s Parent Advisor of the Diversity Leadership Club & Parent Coordinator of the Diversity and Inclusion Center

Kevin Monaghan – ECA Coordinating Committee Member & Commercial Photographer

Ted Perch – ECA Coordinating Committee Member & Easthampton Media Board Member

Hillary Smith – Secretary, ECA Coordinating Committee & Cultural Policy Professional

Artist Agreements

All selected artists must comply with program guidelines. As with all ECA & City programs, artists can submit invoices once they have fulfilled the requirements of their agreement. Please note that checks can be expected to arrive approximately four weeks after paperwork has been processed.


Please direct all inquiries regarding the Easthampton City Arts Artist Relief Grants program to Pasqualina Azzarello, City Arts Coordinator:*Please note that inquiries must be received by the end of day March 16 to ensure a timely response ahead of the application deadline.