Small project grants

These grants provide funding to help museums, galleries and other visual arts organisations realise adventurous projects, up to £10,000, across a range of activities to benefit their audiences.

Funding range

Up to £10,000 (no lower limit)

Our small project grants provide funding to help museums, galleries and visual arts organisations act on good ideas and test new ways of working that will benefit their audiences.

We encourage project proposals, activity and outcomes that align with one or more of the four strands of our programme: building collections, shaping futures, reaching audiences, and making connections.

We will consider grants for any type of activity provided the organisation can demonstrate its impact and benefits and show which of Art Fund’s programme aims it meets. We encourage innovative and entrepreneurial thinking and are happy to support experimental projects.

Who should apply

We welcome applications from UK public museums, galleries, historic houses, libraries and archives that have spaces for the public to visit and enjoy collections. This could be a dedicated exhibition space, or an active audience events programme. Alongside the visual arts we are keen to support the display and sharing collections of all forms, including natural history, science and social history.

We also ask that you can demonstrate that you operate to best practice standards or have a good track record in delivering high quality public activity. Ways you could show this could be taking part in the UK Museum Accreditation Scheme or by sharing examples of a recent project you delivered, referencing partners you have worked with, or recognition or awards you have received.

If you are non-venue based organisation, such as visual arts agency or festival, we’d be happy to hear from you providing you have a visual arts or a collections focus, and that you are working in partnership with an organisation that fulfils the eligibility criteria above. Sadly, we can’t support artists or individual practitioners, neither can we support theatre, music, dance or other art forms. If you are looking to acquire artwork as part of your project, please refer to our acquisition grants.

We particularly welcome applications which focus on:

  • Audience development
  • Equality, diversity and inclusion
  • Activity outside London, and/or in areas of low cultural provision/engagement
  • New partnerships

Are you eligible?

Art Fund exists to support museums and galleries. We can only accept applications from organisations whose primary purpose relates to objects and works of art. As a registered charity we can only pay grants to organisations who are registered for public interest, these include:

  • Charities
  • Community Incorporated Organisations (CIO)
  • Community Interest Companies (CIC)
  • Charitable Community Benefit Societies

Unfortunately, the following organisations are ineligible to apply:

  • Organisations that exist to make profit, including: Private Limited Companies, Public Limited Companies, Unlimited Companies, or Sole Traders
  • General Partnerships, Limited Partnerships, or Limited Liability Partnerships
  • Commercial organisations
  • Artists’ groups
  • Hospitals/healthcare settings
  • Places of worship
  • Organisations with a focus on music, drama, dance and art forms outside the visual arts

Funds available

We will consider applications for up to £10,000 (there is no lower limit).

To enable applicants to act quickly to realise a good idea, we will consider 100% funding.

Applicants should demonstrate the commitment their own organisation is making to the activity, in cash or in kind.

If your project is more than £10,000 we recommend you look at our Respond and reimagine grants.


We are working hard to support our network during this hugely challenging time. Our Small Project Grants are still open, and we are particularly keen for this funding to support organisations in continuing to engage with the public during periods of closure. We encourage innovative and creative approaches and are happy to support experimental projects which can be delivered digitally.

We realise many organisations are currently experiencing a difficult time, that’s why we’ve decided to relax some of our grant criteria and will now consider supporting costs that include equipment and staffing. Staffing costs where included should link to the activity you plan to deliver with our funding. We can consider full-cost recovery for existing staff to deliver activity, costs to support you to bring furloughed staff back into the workplace or freelancer support in addition to new roles being recruited for.

If you plan on recruiting new staff or appointing freelancers, please ensure that you consider salary guidelines and transparency around roles such as those published by the Museums Association or Icon or advocated for through the Fair Museum Jobs campaign. As a funder we want to ensure that best practice is supported in recruitment.

We can turn applications around in a short timeframe. Please get in touch if you are interested in applying.

Applications are reopening in Spring 2021.

Information for applicants

Get in touch

You are encouraged to review the Guidance for applicants and contact the Programmes team to discuss your potential project before submitting an application.

Please contact:

Rob Dingle, programme partnerships manager
020 7225 4871

How to apply

For application forms and to submit your application, log in to My Art Fund.

You must be registered as a professional user.

If you already have a My Art Fund account but are not registered as a professional user, you can add your professional details when logged in.

If you require application forms in an alternative format, please contact the Programmes team

Log in to apply
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