Creative City Has Thus Far Funded 33 Projects, Granting $318,500 in Allston, Chinatown, Dorchester, East Boston, Jamaica Plain, Mission Hill, Roxbury, and South End

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[Boston, MA] The New England Foundation for the Arts announces the fourth round of artist grantees for its Creative City program, which supports art projects of all genres that engage directly with Bostonians in their neighborhoods. Round four awards seven new artist projects that will take place throughout 2017 totaling $70,000. 

Project Title/Artist Genre Neighborhood

Beat Bus 2.0
Maria Finkelmeier (Jamaica Plain)

Music Citywide

Community in Action: A Mural for the Vietnamese Community in Fields Corner
Ngoc-Tran Vu (Dorchester)

Visual Art Dorchester
Wendy Jehlen | ANIKAYA (Somerville)
Dance Allston
Mother & Father Wit: Life Lessons
Valerie Stephens (Roxbury)
Storytelling Roxbury
Patchtax & the MANNA Singers
Eve Boltax (Jamaica Plain), Mary Joy Patchett (Cambridge)/Patchtax Music
Music Downtown
Pluralism in Music and Community
Mehmet Ali Sanlıkol
Music Roxbury/Fenway
Tortilla Social
Salvador Jimenez (Jamaica Plain)
Visual Art Jamaica Plain

Creative City art projects extend into Boston neighborhoods featuring creative expression of many disciplines including theater, music, dance, visual art, spoken word, and more. Programs offer a variety of opportunities for community participation, including performances, workshops, receptions, and interactive storytelling.

Creative City was launched in 2015 by New England Foundation for the Arts with hopes to support individual artists to enliven neighborhoods and engage communities. The grant program has awarded $318,500 to 33 projects in four rounds of applications. In addition, Creative City has also awarded $20,000 to 20 community partners ($1,000/each) to support/collaborate with the individual artist project (more partner applications are in process now).  The deadline for the fifth invitation for individual artist applications will be in September 2017; the date will be announced in late spring. For grant eligibility and criteria, visit /creative-city-grant. Creative City is made possible by the Barr Foundation with additional funding from the Boston Foundation.

Artists who receive Creative City grants engage in important conversations in their communities around displacement, immigration, identity – timely issues that impact all of us,” said Cathy Edwards, NEFA executive director. “Supporting local artists’ visions is critical, and this does that through surprising ways and locations.”

“Creative City is about taking the life and stories of communities and, through the powerful synergy of artists and residents, examining and retelling those stories in fresh and provocative ways,” said San San Wong, Barr Foundation’s senior program officer for arts and creativity. “We continue to be excited to see the varied scope of these engagements in communities across Boston. It has been our privilege to partner with NEFA in supporting so many talented artists and see new stories of neighborhoods come alive through this program.” 

Learn about previous Creative City artist grantees and community partners.

About Creative City
Creative City supports individual artists, artist collectives, and artistic collaborations in all disciplines and with roots in diverse cultures, forms, and aesthetics. Grants range from $2,500-$10,000, and an additional stipend is available for community partners to help support presentation costs. Creative City is made possible by the Barr Foundation with additional funding from the Boston Foundation. For more information about funding priorities, eligibility, and criteria, visit

About New England Foundation for the Arts
The New England Foundation for the Arts invests in the arts to enrich communities in New England and beyond. NEFA accomplishes this by granting funds to artists and cultural organizations; connecting them to each other and their audiences; and analyzing their economic contributions. NEFA serves as a regional partner for the National Endowment for the Arts, New England’s state arts agencies, and private foundations. Visit for more information. 

About the Barr Foundation
The Barr Foundation’s mission is to invest in human, natural, and creative potential, serving as thoughtful stewards and catalysts. Based in Boston, Barr focuses regionally, and selectively engages nationally, working in partnership with nonprofits, foundations, the public sector, and civic and business leaders to elevate the arts, advance solutions for climate change, and connect all students to success in high school and beyond. The Barr Foundation’s Arts & Creativity program focuses the goal of elevating the arts and enabling creative expression to engage and inspire a dynamic, thriving Massachusetts. For more information, visit or follow @BarrFdn.


CONTACT: Ami Bennitt | 617.797.8267