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Los Angeles Artists Can Get $1,500 “Emergency Relief” Grant

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Ari Herstand
Ari Herstand is a Los Angeles based musician, the founder and CEO of Ari’s Take and the author of How to Make It in the New Music Business.
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If you’re an artist in Los Angeles, stop what you’re doing and jump on this.

Today, the Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs Public Art Division (DCA) and the City Council, led by Councilman David Ryu of Council District 4, announced the Citywide COVID-19 Emergency Response Program to provide additional emergency relief to individual artists who live in Los Angeles.

The organizations have designated $340,000 in Arts Development Fees for this program. 

Any artist currently living in Los Angeles can apply for up to $1,500 of immediate funding. 

They define individual artists as any person who works greater than quarter-time for income as a creative producer. Artists working in all mediums are encouraged to apply

Funding will be three tiered: 

  • $500 for artists who work up to quarter-time
  • $1,000 for artists who are employed part-time or full-time at any type of company
  • $1,500 for artists who are full-time freelancers

As long as you make at least a quarter of your living making art, haven’t received a Los Angeles artist grant in the past year and are willing to make your art public and allow the city to share your art (like embed your song), you can apply.

Artists must also demonstrate financial need and detrimental impact caused by COVID-19 such as ability to pay rent, utility bills, loss of employment, etc. 

Emma Howard, the Director of Planning in councilman David Ryu’s (CD-4) office wrote in an email to constituents today “The grants prioritize supporting artists of color and artists demonstrating financial need.” And “A portion of the overall program is dedicated to support artists living and working in Council District 4.”

The grants prioritize supporting artists of color and artists demonstrating financial need.”


  • Applicants must reside within the City of Los Angeles
  • Applicants must demonstrate professional creative experience over at least the past two (2) years on an attached resume.
  • High school or college students creating projects for school accreditation are ineligible.
  • Employees of the City of Los Angeles are ineligible to apply.

Applications are open now through September 1st or until the first 600 applications have been received – whichever comes first. 

So jump on this now!

You can apply here. 

More information can be found here. 

Councilman David Ryu also introduced a motion today to allocate $20 million to support local arts organizations.

Make sure you write your council member and let them know you support this effort! 

You can find out who your council member is here. Your letter can just read:

 “Hi Council member_______, I am constituent of Council District ___. I am an artist who is struggling during the pandemic. PERSONALIZE AND TELL YOUR STORY (“my gigs have been cancelled, I lost my clients, etc”). Please support David Ryu’s motion to allocate $20 million in Coronavirus Relief Funding to the Department of Cultural Affairs. 

Thank you!
Address (if you’d like)

About The Author

Ari Herstand
Ari Herstand is a Los Angeles based musician, the founder and CEO of Ari’s Take and the author of How to Make It in the New Music Business.

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