The blog of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation

Feb 19, 2013

Last chance South Florida: Ask questions about the Knight Arts Challenge

Posted by Tatiana Hernandez

We had a great turnout last night at Fort Lauderdale’s Cinema Paradiso, our first of 4 Community Q & A sessions on the Knight Arts Challenge that are taking place this week around South Florida.

 We wanted to share what’s on people’s minds ahead of the March 4 application deadline, and some tips and insights that Matt Haggman, previous winners and I shared.
Several people asked how to make their application stand out. Here’s the advice we offered:
  • Make the title catchy, not necessarily descriptive.
  • Use your 150 words to get to the point – what’s unique about your project?
  • Don’t write your proposal in isolation. Share it with friends for their input. Make sure they understand what you’re trying to convey.
  • Present the idea as personal and show your passion, but stay away from the words “I want to.” Ideas should put the community first.
  •  If you’re an individual artist seeking funds for a project, remember it has to be in service to the community. Ask yourself, how will this engage South Florida? Will my project make South Florida a better place to live?
Willie Stewart, a previous challenge winner, gave the best tip of the night: “Be honest and sincere, and the Knight Foundation will feel it.”
Here are few other quick questions – and our answers:
  • How many ideas can I submit? As many as you like!
  • Can the project be nationwide? As long as it follows the three rules, which includes that the project takes place in or benefits South Florida.
  • How provocative can the program be?  Be provocative. Be creative. We are not the thought police.
We have three more Community Q & A sessions this week. The schedule is below. Hope to see you there.
  • North Central Dade: 7 p.m. Feb. 19: Opa-locka City Hall, 780 Fisherman St., Second Floor
  • Downtown Miami: 7 p.m. Feb. 20: Cannonball, Downtown Miami, 1035 N. Miami Ave., Suite 200
  • South Dade: 7 p.m., Feb. 21: South Miami-Dade Cultural Arts Center, 10950 SW 211 St.
Thanks again to all of our hosts for these gatherings: Broward County Cultural DivisionWPBTBusiness for the Arts of BrowardArts and Cultural Center of Hollywoodthe Opa-locka CDCHot 105WEDRM EnsembleUrgent Inc.Miami Children’s InitiativeMiami-Dade County Division of Cultural AffairsMiami New TimesCannonballMiami Light ProjectSweat RecordsBass Museum of ArtBas Fisher InvitationalKaren Peterson Dancers and ArtSouth.

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