WAB Woodland Indian Arts Grant

Wisconsin Arts Board

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Predicted Deadline
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Predicted deadline: Oct 26, 2024 1:00pm PDT

Grant amount: US $1,500 - US $6,000

Fields of work: Native American Culture & Heritage

Applicant type: Indigenous Group, Nonprofit

Funding uses: Project / Program, Education / Outreach, Exhibitions, Training / Capacity Building

Location of project: Wisconsin

Location of residency: Wisconsin


Wisconsin Art Board

Mission Statement

The Wisconsin Arts Board is the state agency which nurtures creativity, cultivates expression, promotes the arts, supports the arts in education, stimulates community and economic development and serves as a resource for people of every culture and heritage. 


The Wisconsin Arts Board values:

  • ​imagination
  • creativity
  • curiosity
  • freedom of expression
  • respect and appreciation for all cultures and people
  • artistic quality
  • a broad definition of the arts
  • audience and patron development
  • community engagement

Woodland Indian Arts Initiative

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​The Woodland Indian Arts Initiative (WIAI) is designed to promote and develop a foundation of cultural and economic support for traditional and contemporary Native American arts in Wisconsin. As part of this work, the Arts Board annually distributes funds from Gaming Compact monies to support artistic activities among Wisconsin's tribes, bands and urban Indian communities, including:

  • Bad River Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians
  • Brothertown Indian Nation
  • Forest County Potawatomi Community
  • Ho-Chunk Nation
  • Lac Courte Oreilles Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians
  • Lac du Flambeau Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians
  • Menominee Indian Tribe of Wisconsin
  • Oneida Nation of Wisconsin
  • Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa Indians
  • Sokaogon Chippewa Community
  • St. Croix Chippewa Community
  • Stockbridge-Munsee Band of Mohican Indians
  • Urban Indian populations in Milwaukee, Madison, Green Bay, La Crosse and other urban centers

Types of Activities Funded​​​

Funding priority goes to activities that work to build a long-term structure of support for Native arts in Wisconsin. These include but are not limited to:

  • Professional arts administration positions in support of Native arts,
  • Documentation of arts activities and cultural knowledge in Wisconsin’s Native communities,
  • Technical assistance and professional development to Native artists and arts organizations,
  • Presentation and promotion of Wisconsin’s Native artists through festivals, markets, exhibitions, various media and other forms of presentation, and
  • Planning grants in preparation for any of the above.
  • New, expanded or existing projects are eligible. 

Traditional and contemporary art forms are welcome.

For additional information on the grant program and reports on needs articulated by Wisconsin Native artists, can be found on this page.

Evaluation Criteria

Applications to the WIAI grant program will be evaluated on the following criteria:

  • The degree to which the proposed activity will serve a need or interest in one or more of the identified Native American communities in Wisconsin.
  • Quality of the proposed art form,
  • The feasibility of the proposed activity,
  • The feasibility of the proposed budget,
  • And the degree to which the proposed activity will develop a foundation of cultural and economic support for Native arts in Wisconsin.

You can learn more about this opportunity by visiting the funder's website.


  • Who Can Apply:
    • Applicants must be Native-led organizations and/or organizations that provide direct services to members of Wisconsin’s Indian communities and: 
      • are a unit of tribal government or hold tax-exempt status from federal income tax under Section 501(c)3 of the Internal Revenue Code;
      • are incorporated in and conduct business in Wisconsin and have been doing so for at least 3 years;
      • conduct arts-related work that involves and benefits Wisconsin’s Native American communities;
      • are the most appropriate sponsor for the proposed activities; and
      • are able to match each dollar of Arts Board support with cash constituting at least ½ of the match. The other half of the match can be in-kind, cash, or a combination of the two.
    • Unincorporated nonprofit groups and incorporated nonprofit organizations that have been doing mission-related work for at least three years but lack 501(c)3 status from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) can apply using a separate nonprofit organization as a fiscal receiver. See the guidelines for more discussion of working with fiscal receivers.​


  • Arts Board funds cannot be spent on the following types of items:
    • capital expenditures (e.g., renovation of a building);
    • benefit/fundraiser activities;
    • prizes, awards, or competitions;
    • individual tuition or activities for which academic credit is given; out-of-state travel;
    • hospitality expenses (e.g., refreshments at receptions, gallery openings, etc.);
    • space rental;
    • general operating expenses;
    • deficits incurred from past activities;
    • activities that occurred before the start of the grant period

Wisconsin Arts Board

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This page was last reviewed August 10, 2023 and last updated August 10, 2023