Ten rounds of Rocket Grants Awards have been completed since the program began in 2010, funding artists who live within an 80-mile radius of downtown Kansas City. This footprint includes Lawrence, KS, Topeka, KS, St. Joseph, MO, Warrensburg, MO and Sedalia, MO (see map).
Rocket Grants are specifically intended to encourage work that is inventive and “under the radar”, and that engages or benefits an audience somewhere outside of traditional or established arts venues. Selections are evaluated not only on the artistic merits of the proposed projects, but also on their capacity to stimulate further growth in a diverse and supportive art ecology.
Final selections are made in April/May of each year to identify the ten or so projects that will be awarded a Rocket Grant. In May/June we hold an Awards Ceremony to honor the recipients and share their proposals with the Kansas City regional community. We choose a place outside of mainstream arts venues to reflect the non-traditional spaces the projects in this program are asked to inhabit.
The images in this slide show were taken at the reception to honor awarded artists on May 16, 2019, at VMLY&R in Kansas City, MO.
Images from previous gatherings: