Makeshift is a seed project providing six (6) one-time grants of $2,500 for artists and curators working in new or existing “microspaces” in Albuquerque’s Downtown Arts & Cultural District.

The project uses funds the district received as part of the Albuquerque Community Foundation’s Great Grant Giveaway in April 2017, and is aimed at beautifying Downtown, and providing free and easy to view artwork in the form of a “walkable outdoor gallery” visible on a 24-hour basis.

Applicants can be curators, artists, arts administrators/arts nonprofits, or anyone with experience putting together shows with one or more artists.

Each applicant is asked to pair up with a local business or property owner, and we encourage applicants to focus on increasing economic opportunity for emerging artists specifically in Albuquerque, including but not limited to Chicana & Chicano artists, Native/indigenous identifying artists, LGBTQIA artists, homeless / transitional / formerly incarcerated artists, and artists who are veterans of the military and armed forces.

Applications will be accepted beginning on September 4th, 2017, with a deadline of  October 16th, 2017. 

Makeshift Grant Application August 2017 (Microsoft Word document)

We’ve included answers to some common questions below, and also encourage you to attend one of the information sessions listed here:

  • 6p to 7:30p | Thursday, September 7th, 2017 | Breve Crepes & Coffee, 400 Gold Ave SW (first 30-45 mins of Coffee + Creatives Meetup)
  • 6p to 7:30p | Thursday, September 21st, 2017 | Breve Crepes & Coffee, 400 Gold Ave SW (first 30-45 mins of Coffee + Creatives Meetup)
  • 12p to 1pm | Tuesday, October 10th, 2017 | Free Range Spaces Coworking, 1710 Central Ave SE, Albuquerque, NM 87106

*** A very special thank you to members of the Arts & Cultural District Advisory Council, Nancy Zastudil of Central Features Contemporary Art, and Erin Elder of Gibbous Creative for generously donating time and creative brain space to help us structure the Makeshift project ***

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Do I have to be a curator, arts nonprofit, etc. to apply?

We encourage applications from experienced curators, galleries, and nonprofits, but anyone is welcome to apply.

We do ask that you have some experience selecting, organizing, and hosting artists for a show,  and it is one of four areas we will use when considering each potential project (please see full application for more info).

What kind of artwork is included in the Makeshift project?

Visual art, film, multimedia/projection, sculpture, and installations of all kinds are welcome. As long as your proposal includes a property/business owner with space to host the project, and meets the review criteria, we’ll be happy to consider it!

Can it be a new project? What if I apply with a window/wall/space that’s already in use?

We welcome both existing and completely new projects, all we ask is that there be new work in the space at least every 3 months over the course of 12 months.

I am a property/business owner that has experience hosting and organizing exhibitions/installations, can I apply? 

Yes – if you own or lease space that can be seen by the public 24 hours/day within the Arts & Cultural District boundaries, and also have experience planning and hosting shows…we welcome your application! Please see full application for details/review criteria.

What if I’m interested in putting together shows monthly or bi-monthly instead of every 3 months?

As long as the space you are proposing meets the other application requirements and the property/business owner you partner with agrees to it, we would be happy to consider proposals with monthly or bi-monthly instead of quarterly shows.

Do there need to be different artists for each quarterly show? Can I create one installation for the entire 12 months?

We do ask that you add new work to the space every 3 months, but that is the only requirement. You are welcome to include work that progresses over the course of the year, and we encourage you to engage multiple artists.

I have an idea for Makeshift, but no space, can you help me find one?

While we are not actively pairing business/property owners with curators/exhibition organizers, you are welcome to contact us for potential locations, or attend one of the information sessions below for potential ideas.

6p to 7:30p | Thursday, September 7th, 2017 | Breve Crepes & Coffee, 400 Gold Ave SW (first 30-45 mins of Coffee + Creatives Meetup)

6p to 7:30p | Thursday, September 21st, 2017 | Breve Crepes & Coffee, 400 Gold Ave SW (first 30-45 mins of Coffee + Creatives Meetup)

12p to 1pm | Tuesday, October 10th, 2017 | Free Range Spaces Coworking, 1710 Central Ave SE, Albuquerque, NM 87106

If we know of space that appears to be available or a business/property owner contacts us with interest in the program, we will be happy to provide you with their information.

How are you reviewing / selecting applicants to give the grant to? 

A selection committee that includes members of the Arts & Cultural District Advisory Council, Downtown business/property owners, and local artists/curators will review and score the applications based on three categories: experience in selecting/coordinating shows with one or more artists, the applicants plan to select artists, and original and unique use of space and materials. Please see the full application for more details.

If selected for a Makeshift grant, how will I / we be paid?

The Downtown Arts & Cultural District will issue 50-percent payment within one month of awarding the grant, and 50-percent payment at the six-month mark.

We encourage but do not require you to use a fiscal sponsor with tax-exempt status; for individuals awarded the grant that choose to receive funds directly, please note that you will be responsible for paying any applicable taxes.

What happens after the 12 month period? Can the quarterly installations continue?

We have enough funding for 12 months – after that, you’re on your own!

However, our hope is that some of the curator/artist and business/property owner partnerships will continue in some form, whether that’s leasing space, creating a business, or finding additional funding sources to continue the microgallery.

I’m a business/property owner, can you pair me up with artists?

If you contact us via phone or email with details on your space, we would be happy to provide your information to artists that contact us in search of space. We can also provide you a general list of nonprofit arts organizations and artists that you can contact to explore working with.

Do I have to have a 501(c)3 or nonprofit fiscal sponsor to apply?

You are not required to be part of or to partner with a 501(c)3 / tax exempt organization in order to apply for Makeshift. We encourage but do not require applications that include a fiscal sponsor. The main difference is that you as an individual would be responsible for the taxes on any grant awarded.

Can an arts nonprofit both host one of the microspaces and also be a fiscal sponsor for another one?

Yes, that is acceptable. We do ask that nonprofits be part of no more than two applications (as a fiscal or main applicant) to ensure opportunity for multiple local organizations.

Do I need to have insurance for the microgallery space?

Yes, if you are awarded a Makeshift grant we will ask that you provide us with proof of insurance for the 12 month period you plan to occupy the space.

That can be purchased by the curator, nonprofit, or property/business owner – we suggest working with the business or property owner to see what, if any, insurance they already carry on the space. In many cases, if a property or building is being used for commercial purposes there is already general liability insurance or additional coverage can be purchased at a low cost.

By accepting the Makeshift grant, you acknowledge that you are responsible for collaborating with the business/property owner to ensure that the space is covered by a valid insurance policy.

Have a question that isn’t answered above or on the application? Please feel free to email joe@abqmainstreet.org or call 505.585.4621