Over 500 artists across Ireland share in €7 million Arts Council bursary scheme

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Over 500 artists across Ireland share in €7 million Arts Council bursary scheme

More than 530 artists across 27 counties and overseas have received a prestigious Bursary Award, the Arts Council has said. The grants of up to €20,000 will help musicians, actors, writers, dancers, filmmakers, and visual and other artists develop their art.

The state agency for funding and developing the arts said that, in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, it had added significantly to the amount available in its second round of bursaries for 2020, and encouraged artists in every art form and area of arts practice to apply. In total, more than €7 million will be invested across the full range of areas.

Arts Council Director Maureen Kennelly said that artists have been hit hard by the pandemic and the changing public health regulations, with most unable to make a living or to plan for the future.

“We are particularly happy this year to be able to provide so many with a bursary award. I am hugely encouraged by the resilience of our artists and the quality of the applications we received. It is a strong indicator that the arts in Ireland can play a huge role as our society recovers in 2021,” she said.

Earlier this year, the Arts Council received an additional allocation of €25 million from the Government to help alleviate the effects on the arts of Covid-19. The enlarged Bursary Award forms part of a suite of new or enhanced grants and initiatives for both individual artists and arts organisations to support the sector through the pandemic.

The Arts Council has been offering bursaries to artists for many years. Among those who have received an award at some point in their career are Colum McCann; Marina Carr; Enda Walsh; Olwen Fouéré and Sally Rooney.

The purpose of the award is to support professional artists at any stage of their career to develop their art practice. It provides artists with the time and resources to think, research, reflect and critically engage with their art.

Recipients can receive up to a maximum of €20,000 in some art forms. The average amount awarded in this round was €13,160.