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Welcome to Prairie Arts, North Dakota Council on the Arts' monthly electronic newsletter,
containing statewide and national art-related news.
In this Issue:
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UPDATES - Kim Konikow

waist-up photo of Kevin Locke playing Native flute in native clothing with grey hair pulled back and swamp-like background with trees and leaves
NDCA was deeply saddened to learn of Kevin Locke’s unexpected passing. Kevin was a Great Plains traditional arts icon and truly one of the most well-known artists from the Northern Great Plains; nationally and internationally known. His spirit will always be with us in many ways…

October is a special month to share your activities with the public under the Arts & Humanities umbrella. This month-long recognition asks us to participate in a wide variety of arts & humanities activities that celebrate 

National Arts & Humanities Month

the riches of our state. Think radio,  museums, dance, visual arts, music, writing/press, lectures, etc. Get out there and share with family or friends who don’t normally attend events!

The end of October is an opportunity to come together. Join us at the Statewide Arts Convening, part of Main Street Summit 2022, in Bismarck at the Event Center. Based on what we heard are your needs to move us out of a pandemic mindset, NDCA has lined up a host of inspiring speakers to share ideas and offer solutions. Come see folks you haven’t in a long while, get hugs, listen, learn and work together as a field towards the future… THIS IS FOR YOU!
fall leaves in orange and yellow shades
Enjoy the fall! 


David Swenson, producer, Dakota Legacy, shown seated next to Courtney Yellowfat who is standing.

*Producer David Swenson seated next to Courtney Yellowfat who is standing.
1) The Densmore/Lakota Song Repatriation Project was unveiled at the United Tribes Technical College PowWow on Saturday, Sept. 10. NDCA was proud and honored to be part of this multi-year project. It revived 100 year-old songs and stories, making them more accessible to a wider audience and all but guaranteeing they will continue to be a part of the history and culture of North Dakota for many years to come.

Thane Lund gesturing in front of placard, describing his plans for the Arts Across the Prairie project in Region 1, NW North Dakota

Artist Thane Lund explaining Arts Across the Prairie, Region 1 project plans
2) On Sunday, Sept. 11, a Community Reception was held at the State Historical Society’s Writing Rock Site outside of Crosby. It was exciting to see 53 people, ages 2-89, from North Dakota, Minnesota & Colorado attend this inaugural event where the artist talked about his plans to create a huge earthwork. Ground-breaking and Native blessings are slated for spring.


3) NDCA staff attended NASAA Assembly 2022, which took place in Kansas City, Missouri, September 22-24. The event included sessions exploring significant trends and challenges in our field; peer gatherings of staff by discipline; unifying, art-infused plenary sessions; and opportunities to explore Kansas City through artist- and arts organization-centric sessions.

Dayna from Arts Partnership in front with NDCA Board Members in background at Amplitude Studio in West Acres Mall, Fargo, ND

Dayna from The Arts Partnership in front with NDCA Board Members in background at Aptitude Studios in West Acres Mall, Fargo, ND.
4) On Friday, Sept. 30, NDCA Board and Staff met in Fargo for the annual fall meeting and a community reception at NDSU’s Flakoll Gallery. It was wonderful to meet many artists in advance of the weekend’s Studio Crawl. On Saturday some of the board toured Aptitude at West Acres Mall. The time together is always filled with spirited conversation, new ideas, and support to continue to work toward NDCA's mission of "strengthening the creative capacity of North Dakota for all who live and visit here."


Accessibility Webinar poster with various arts and accessibility icons

1) There is still time to REGISTER for NDCA 's FREE Accessibility in the Arts Convening Webinar happening ONLINE October 13, from 8:30am to 12:30pm. Visit NDCA's website for more information.

Governor's Photo Contest with image of 2 Prairie Dogs hugging in background

2021 Governor's Photo Contest Wildlife Category winner & Best in Show: Prairie Dog Embrace by Tim Samuelson
2) The 19th Annual, 2022 North Dakota Governor’s Photo Contest winner's will be announced at a special ceremony happening at the Morton Mandan Public Library at 3pm on Monday, October 17, 2022. Following the event, the prints will be on display there and at the Mandan Progress Association office (411 W Main St.) through the end of the year.


NDCA Statewide Arts Convening part of Main Street ND Summit 2022 logo

NDCA announces Statewide Arts Convening a part of Main Street ND Summit 2022

NDCA will host its FREE biennial Statewide Arts Convening October 24-26 in Bismarck/Mandan in collaboration with Main Street ND Summit 2022. The Convening will feature several day-time sessions with topics that include fundraising, accessibility, leveraging resources and building a community of stakeholders. This will be followed by night-time events, all focused on the arts community.

The day-time sessions include: 
  • Common Traits in Thriving Communities, Keynote by Amanda Brinkman 
  • Workshop for Main Street Business: Marketing and Digital Best Practices by Amanda Brinkman
  • Accessibility of Public Spaces and Public Materials, panel presentation
  • Creating a Community for All Generations, panel presentation
  • Finding Community Stakeholders & Building Support for Projects and Programs, panel presentation
  • Clear over Clever: A Practical Framework to Leverage Resources, Tell a Better Origin Story, and Have More Impact, NDCA Keynote by Patrick Kirby
  • Arts Across the Prairie: Public Art and Statewide Placemaking by Kim Konikow and KayCee Lindsay
The night-time events include
  • Live acoustic music by the Waddington Brothers
  • Art Crawl in Downtown Bismarck
  • Fundraising After Dark: Everything you wanted to know about raising funds but no one was honest enough to tell you, a Late Night Session by Patrick Kirby
Amanda Brinkman with short, white/blonde spiked hair, toothy smile, big hoop earrings, standing on hot pink background, wearing pink shoes, black skinny pants, black leather jacket, white under-shirt with dog image, holding disco ball on the side; Waist-up photo of Patrick Kirby crossing arms, wearing long-sleeve sea blue quarter-zip with dark-rimmed glasses, short brown hair and satisfied smile on plain light grey background
The keynote speakers (above) are Amanda Brinkman, a nationally renowned brand expert, Forbes contributor, and frequent on-camera personality for national news outlets and celebrity interviews; and Patrick Kirby, the Founder of Do Good Better Consulting, author of the Amazon best seller Fundraise Awesomer! A Practical Guide to Staying Sane While Doing Good, and host of The Official Do Good Better Podcast. 

All are encouraged to participate in this FREE, in-person event. More information, including a full agenda, session descriptions, speakers bios, hotel information, and a link to register, can be found on NDCA's Statewide Arts Convening web page.
Learn more and register for Statewide Arts Convening


National Arts and Humanities Month poster show woman dancing in long white dress with tight flowered leotard-style top on black background October declared National Arts and Humanities Month

On September 30, President Joseph R. Biden issued a proclamation designating October 2022 as National Arts and Humanities Month (NAHM). In the proclamation, the President announced a new Executive Order that advances a whole-of-government policy for the arts, the humanities, and museum and library services, including the re-establishment of the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities (PCAH) “to inform and support the national engagement with Americans necessary to advance the arts, the humanities, and museum and library services.”
Read Full NAHM Press Release from NEA


Governor Burgum proclamation making October 2022 arts and humanities month in North DakotaOctober 2022 declared Arts and Humanities Month in North Dakota

Governor Doug Burgum has declared October 2022 as Arts and Humanities Month for the state of North Dakota. The official proclamation recognized that "the arts and humanities enhance and enrich the lives of all citizens; and affect every aspect of life in America today including the economy, social problem solving, job creation, education, creativity, and community livability. North Dakotans are encouraged to participate in arts and humanities activities and celebrate the cultural and historical riches of our state."  North Dakota is home to two major statewide arts and humanities organizations: North Dakota Council on the Arts (NDCA) and Humanities North Dakota. Both organizations have missions to provide educational and cultural opportunities to all citizens in our state.
Read October Arts & Humanities Month in ND Press Release

Left to Right: Ubhauli Ceremony (Fargo), ND Shakespeare Festival (Grand Forks), Long X Arts Foundation (Watford City), Bismarck Mandan Civic Chorus

*Left to Right: Ubhauli Ceremony (Fargo), ND Shakespeare Festival (Grand Forks), Long X Arts Foundation (Watford City), Bismarck Mandan Civic Chorus

NDCA recently awarded $902,717 in FY23 grants across the state

North Dakota Council on the Arts (NDCA) recently awarded $902,717 in ten different grant programs for fiscal year 2023. Grant programs included: Art for Life, Arts in Education Collaboration, Artist in Residence, Community Arts Access Tier 1 & Tier 2, Folk & Traditional Arts Apprenticeship, Partner Letters of Agreements, Institutional Support, Individual Artist Fellowship, Professional Development, and Special Projects. Most of the programs had an early spring application deadline, but Artist in Residence, Professional Development, and Special Projects all have ongoing deadlines with funds available until they have been depleted.

All applications were evaluated by grant review panels and were subject to approval by NDCA’s board of directors. NDCA Executive Director Kim Konikow said, "We are thrilled to support so many artists and organizations across the State, thanks to the National Endowment for the Arts and ND State Legislature.”
View List of NDCA FY23 Grants Awarded through Sept. 13


The North Dakota Department of Commerce is now accepting applications for round two of the Main Street Initiative (MSI) 2022 Vibrancy Grant

The Vibrancy Grant Program supports local efforts to increase community vibrancy by providing seed funding for a small project that will build momentum and inspire additional projects. During the second round, applicants will receive extra points for projects that include winter placemaking.

Grant funding supports nonprofit organizations and/or local governments in vibrancy projects such as public events, public art or cultural celebrations, activating underutilized space, community gathering spaces, promoting active transportation, mitigating impacts of vacant or deteriorated infrastructure, and more.

Application window: Oct. 7 - Nov. 22, 2022                                                    .Back to top..
Main Street Initiative: Vibrancy Grant Program

North Dakota Governor's Award for the Arts plaque

2023 North Dakota Governor’s Awards for the Arts

This biennial program is presented by the Governor’s Office and the North Dakota Council on the Arts to recognize organizations and individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the arts in the state. The awards will be presented at the Heritage Center on February 1, 2023. The categories will include: Individual Achievement, Nonprofit Arts Organization, for-profit Arts Organization, Arts in Education Institution or Teaching Artist/Educator/School Administrator, and an Individual Cultural Heritage Award. Nominate your colleagues for their good work in the field. Applications available soon. 


Fifty years of GSA Art in Architecture

Open Call for GSA Art in Architecture

The Art in Architecture Program oversees the commissioning of artworks for federal buildings nationwide. These artworks enhance the civic meaning of
federal architecture and showcase the vibrancy of American visual arts. 

Dunseith has been selected to be the ONLY North Dakota recipient of this program in the coming year. Proposals will be accepted in the range of $350 to $750k. Applicants must be a US citizen or lawful permanent resident and must join the national artist residency. Before applying, gather materials, including images of work from the past 10 years. Then create a statement for your proposed artwork, create a budget, and update your resume to include 3 references. North Dakota artists are eligible for projects taking place in many other states.
Learn more about GSA's Art in Architecture Program

John & Elaine Andrist with white hair, big smiles, solid blue and orange shirts, standing outside in the sun with words John & Elaine Andrist Charitable Trust at bottom

John & Elaine Andrist Fund

John & Elaine Andrist Charitable Trust announces funds available in each of these four categories for organizations in northwest North Dakota: Arts, Culture, and Creativity; Community Development; Economic Development; and Innovation.

Deadline: October 31, 2022
Learn more and apply for John & Elaine Andrist Funds

Write a Letter, Create Art, Snap a Photo and tag it #Arts are my Superpower

Arts Are My Superpower call to young arts heroes

#ArtsAreMySuperpower, a nationwide effort for children, young adults, families, and classrooms, invites you to write letters to Senators voicing support for the arts throughout the month of October. Visit the Arts Hero website to find everything you need to Be An #ArtsHero, including instructions and letter writing templates for all ages.  
Learn how to Be an Arts Hero
Did you Know graphic
In order to be eligible to receive funds from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), NDCA - like all state arts agencies - must be financially supported by the state legislature who must provide a cost share/match of the NEA funds of at least 1 to 1.

All of NDCA's marketing materials end with this statement, "North Dakota Council on the Arts is supported by funding from the North Dakota State Legislature and the National Endowment for the Arts." With the upcoming legislative session looming and many new representatives, its important to have continued support.
Learn how to Engage with your Legislator


NDCA Program Deadlines

Special Projects

  • Art events in all disciplines
  • Organizations & Individuals
  • Up to $1,500
  • Next Deadline: Nov. 22, 2022 (ongoing program)
  • Project Dates: January 1, 2023 - June 30, 2023

Professional Development

  • Arts-related learning activities
  • Organizations & Individuals
  • Up to $1,000
  • Next Deadline: October 18, 2022 (ongoing program)
  • Project Dates: January 1, 2023 - June 30, 2023

Artist in Residence Now Accepting Applications!

  • Bring artists into pre-K-12 classroom
  • Activities during the regular school day, after school and/or summer months
  • Educational institutions
  • Up to $2,500 reimbursement
  • Deadline: 6 weeks prior to project start date
  • Project Dates: July 1, 2022 - June 30, 2023
Conferences and Webinars:
  • NDCA Accessibility in the Arts Convening circle logoNDCA Accessibility in the Arts Convening Webinar
    • October 13, 8:30am to 12:30pm - This FREE webinar will feature testimony from artists with disabilities, including North Dakota's own Blind Joe; and professional speakers, such as Sam Gould from the award-winning Open Door Theater, who will cover ADA Standards and best practices. After the presentations, attendees with similar needs will join break-out rooms where they can discuss ways to overcome barriers. 
  • ND Statewide Arts Convening - a part of Main Street Summit ND 2022
    • Oct. 24-26 - an opportunity to connect, learn, get inspired, and gain insight to build and grow your community for the future. See more information above.
Arts Events & Activities: Additional Art Opportunities:
  • Innovative Grant awards (2) $550.00 grants each quarter, to one Visual Artist and one Photographer. Ongoing deadlines.
  • Young Arts 2023 Awards - identifies exceptional young artists, amplifies their potential, and invests in their lifelong creative freedom. Deadline to apply is Oct. 14, 2022.
  • E.A. Michelson Philanthropy invites art museums across the United States to submit proposals to participate in its Vitality Arts Project for Art Museums initiative, which will help art museums reframe their relationships with older adults. Deadline to apply is Oct. 21, 2022.
  • USArtists International supports in-person and virtual performances by American artists at engagements at international festivals and global presenting arts marketplaces outside of the United States. The program funds individuals and ensembles across all performing arts practices and disciplines. Ongoing deadlines.
  • Western Arts Alliance (WAA)’s Advancing Indigenous Performance (AIP) program has launched the Native Artist Opportunity Fund. This new financial assistance award program will aid US-based Indigenous performing artists with short-term needs related to the promotion, development and sharing of their work or practice. Grants capped at $750. The program has a rolling deadline.
  • The Rauschenberg Medical Emergency Grants program provides one-time grants of up to $5,000 for recent, unexpected medical, dental, and mental health emergencies experienced by professional dancers and/or artists in need who are practicing in the disciplines of visual arts, film/video/electronic/digital arts, or choreography.
  • Open call for writers and artists: Sunspot Literary Journal offers an Editor's Prize of $50 for the annual edition, and pays for artwork selected for a cover. Now open for flash, stories and essays, including scripts and poetry. Ongoing deadlines.
  • The AestheticaMag Art Prize is open for entries. Welcoming submissions from established and emerging practitioners, the award introduces new talent to the world stage.
  • The Complete Guide to 2022 Artist Grants & Opportunities has some of the best art opportunities, grants, and calls-for-entry for the upcoming year.
  • Visit the Artist Call for Entry website and the Artwork Archive website to learn about endless opportunities!


rectangle with a black colored chalkboard background overlaid with mathematical equations. In the center of the poster, on a diagonal, is a black rectangle bordered by small teal, yellow and red rectangles. It features the 2022 NDEAM theme, “Disability: Part of the Equity Equation”

October is also National Disability Employment Awareness Month (NDEAM)

NDEAM celebrates the contributions of America’s workers with disabilities past and present and showcases supportive, inclusive employment policies and practices. In recognition of the important role people with disabilities play in a diverse and inclusive American workforce, the theme for NDEAM 2022 “Disability: Part of the Equity Equation.”

Read the blog

Read the news release

Read the Presidential proclamation


  • Podcasts""
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