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Scandinavian Folk Arts and Cultural Traditions in the Upper Midwest

The American-Scandinavian Foundation (ASF) provides support to nurture and perpetuate the practice of Scandinavian folk arts and cultural traditions in the Upper Midwest (North Dakota, South Dakota, Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin, and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan). Fellowships for Artists are available for individual artists OR practitioners who live and work in the Upper Midwest (defined as North Dakota, South Dakota, Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin, and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan). They range in amount from $3,000 to $10,000.

To begin an application, click here.


The online application is structured into 3 parts:
I.     Contact Information The first section of the application will ask you to provide your contact information: name, phone number, email address, and primary mailing address.
II.   Project Information: The second section of the application will ask you for the following:

  • Your CV or Resume 
  • Project details: Your project title, start and end dates, and location
  • A brief project summary (max 200 words) outlining the type of folk art or craft tradition you work with, what you intend to accomplish with your proposed project, and how you intend to share it with your local community.
  •  Project Description: Provide short answer responses to the following:
    • Describe your folk art or craft tradition, assuming that the reviewer may not be as familiar with your folk art or craft tradition as you are.
    • Please provide a summary of your background and experience with this folk art or craft tradition.
    • What will your project be about and what kinds of activities will take place during the project period?
    • How did this proposed project help advance or enhance your skills in this folk art or craft tradition?
    • How do you intend to share your work with your local community?
      • Note: If you are an artist who is applying to work with a master artist or craft practitioner, please describe your previous experience working with him/her and tell us how you will benefit from additional time. Biographical information about the master artist/practitioner involved in the project will help us understand how your expertise will be enhanced during the project.

·       2-3 Letters of Support: You may either upload your letter directly, or you may choose to have us send an “Email Request” to your letter writer for him/her to submit his/her letter of support. If you choose "Email Request," please provide your letter writer's name and email address. 

  • For master folk artists or craft practitioners: Please append at least two letters of support demonstrating that your work is recognized by your community. 
  • For apprentices: Please have one of your two letters come from the master artist stating that he/she is aware of the project and willing to participate. 

·       Samples/Additional Materials: Please include samples of your folk art or craft tradition. Photographs, music, videos, or other documentation of your work should be submitted with the application. You can combine samples into a single PDF, Word doc, or PowerPoint Presentation. You may also include links to a website with images, music, or videos.

III.  Project Budget: The third section of the application will provide you with the option to upload your own budget or to enter your proposed budget into an auto-calculating template.  Please fill in your estimated project expenses and project income in the application’s provided budget template. For a reference on per diem costs, please refer to https://www.gsa.gov/travel

ADDITIONAL NOTE: We appreciate the appeal of Sami-inspired craft; however, the American-Scandinavian Foundation respects the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, particularly Article 31, which states:

Indigenous peoples have the right to maintain, control, protect and develop their cultural heritage, traditional knowledge and traditional cultural expressions as well as the manifestations of their…oral traditions, literatures, designs, sports and traditional games, and visual and performing arts. They also have the right to maintain, control, protect, and develop their intellectual property over such cultural heritage, traditional knowledge, and traditional cultural expressions. 

For general inquiries, please contact the Grants Office: grants@amscan.org
For questions about the application process, please contact Folk Arts Consultant Anne Pryor: anne@amscan.org