Luminarts welcomes talented young artists of all social, economic and cultural backgrounds. As a young visual artist, musician, vocalist, or writer from the Chicago area, we invite and encourage you to compete for grants, creative opportunities, and to become Luminarts Fellows.

Non Discriminatory Statement and Commitment to Equity

Luminarts is committed to ensuring equity within its programs and welcomes applicants, artists, audience members, and supporters regardless of race, ethnicity, gender identity, class, religion, sexual orientation, disability, or citizenship status.

Luminarts works directly with artists, jurors, and attendees to make accommodations as needed and holds events at various spaces which are accessible. To request accommodations for Luminarts’ programs or events, please contact Leslie Haviland at or (312) 435-5961.

Luminarts Fellowships

The Luminarts Fellowship includes programs in Visual Arts, Creative Writing, Classical Music, and Jazz. Applicants must be between the ages of 18 and 30, live or reside within 150 miles of the Chicago Loop, and be currently enrolled in, or graduated from, a degree program, conservatory, or other professional artist development program.

Once an artist is awarded a Luminarts Fellowship, they are eligible to apply for additional opportunities for a period of 10 years. These opportunities include project grants, workshops, mentorship, and facilitated conversations that provide valuable insights into building a successful career in the arts.


Visual Arts

Visual Arts Opportunities

Classical Music

Classical Music Opportunities

Jazz Music

jazz opp page_luminarts site

Creative Writing

Fellow Project Grants

Luminarts Fellows are encouraged to apply for funding of projects that break new ground artistically, professionally, and personally. While Project Grants aim to support a broad and diverse scope of career development opportunities for Fellows, Project Grant proposals are strongest when they demonstrate a significant and pivotal impact both on the individual Fellow and at the community level in the Chicago area. Applying for a project grant is a competitive process and not all applicants are necessarily funded.

Note: you must first be awarded a Luminarts Fellowship in order to be eligible for a project grant.


Applications must be submitted in full by October 15, 2024 at 11:59 PM.

Fellows will be notified on or before December 1, 2024 about the status of their application.

Application available soon!


For questions about project grants click below or contact Alex Benjamin, Director of Programs, at or call (312) 435-5961.

Frequently Asked Questions


Ambassador Award

Luminarts Fellows are eligible to apply for $2,500 awards in support of being ambassadors for the Luminarts Cultural Foundation beyond the Chicago region.

The Luminarts Cultural Foundation will accept funding proposals from Luminarts Fellows who have significant projects (performances, exhibitions, readings, etc.) in major markets outside of the Chicago area whereby they will highlight the Luminarts Cultural Foundation’s support in tandem with their outstanding talent.

While the available funds should be of benefit to the Luminarts Fellow, a primary goal of this funding is to raise awareness of the Luminarts Cultural Foundation outside of the Chicago region. In accordance with this, awards will be distributed based on the following criteria:

Ambassador Guidelines

  • Location of the Luminarts Fellow’s project
  • Anticipated number in attendance at event
  • Anticipated marketing/media for the event
  • Luminarts prominence in event materials
  • Luminarts prominence in promotion and media
  • The use of social media to promote the project and the Luminarts Cultural Foundation and the potential number of people reached


We are not currently accepting applications for the Ambassador Award.



Sponsored by Cherilyn G. Murer

Luminarts Fellows are invited, on a revolving basis, to two annual residency programs for 15 artists each: one at Ragdale Foundation Lake Forest, IL and one at Ox-Bow School of Art and Artists’ Residency in Saugatuck, MI. Each residency includes an artist stipend, mentorship, professional development, studio visits, meals and lodging, and unscheduled time to work on projects which residents may not otherwise have the time or resources to complete. Programming is paired with the opportunity to be in community with other Luminarts Fellows, and to connect with professional artists, staff members, and supporters.

Knowing that many residencies have historically been out of reach for artists of color, low income artists, and other marginalized identities due to location, cost, and systemic racism, we work to ensure that all of our Fellows have access to both residencies on a revolving basis.