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Traditional Arts Apprenticeship


PDF-How to Apply


Application Deadline: May 4, 2017

Maximum Award: $3,000

The Traditional Arts Apprenticeship helps communities sustain their cultural heritage by providing an opportunity for master traditional artists to pass on their skills to a qualified apprentice or apprentices.

No funding match or nonprofit affiliation is required.

This funding cycle for this program is July 1, 2017 and June 30, 2018.



Based on their experience and commitment to the traditional art form they practice, masters and apprentices apply to work together in a one-on-one instructional setting. Passed down from one generation to the next, traditional arts are learned informally, usually through observation and example rather, than through formal academic instruction.Up to $3,000 is available for the master artist’s teaching fee, supplies and travel cost. The master artist and apprentice(s) submit one joint application. Preference will be given to selecting apprentices who are members of the same ethnic, religious, occupational, tribal or familial group as the master artist.



Your apprenticeship team is eligible to apply if it meets all of the following criteria:
  • Master and apprentice have both resided full-time in Maine for at least one year immediately prior to the application deadline.
  • Master and apprentice will both reside full-time in Maine throughout the apprenticeship. 
  • The master artist is recognized by their community for expertise in a particular traditional art form.
  • The apprentice demonstrates competency in the art form prior to the apprenticeship.
  • The master is 18 years of age or older at the application deadline.
  • The master is not a student enrolled in a degree or a certificate-granting program.
  • The master is in compliance with final reports required for any previous Maine Arts Commission award received.



A completed application package in the Grants Management System (GMS) for the Traditional Arts Apprenticeship must contain:


  • Completed answers to the narrative prompts in all three sections.
  • Resume, bio, or curriculum vitse of the applicants
  • Up to five artistic samples. Samples may be any combination of images, audio or video (no more than 15 minutes  in length)..
  • Up to three letters of support addressing the qualifications of the master and apprentice and the apprenticeship's impact on the community.


You must submit artistic samples for both the master artist and apprentice(s).

For additional information about artist samples, click here.


Completed State of Maine Vendor Form with exactly the same name and contact information for the master artist as used in your application.



Part A: Master Artist
  1. Name of the Master Artist (100 characters max.)
  2. Describe the traditional craft, music, art, dance, or occupational skill you wish to teach. (1,915 characters max.)
  3. How did you learn your traditional art form? (1,275 characters max.)
  4. How long have you been practicing it? (638 characters max.)
  5. How long have you known your apprentice and why did you select him/her? (683 characters max.)
  6. Why is this tradition important to your community? (1,275 characters max.)


Part B: Apprentice
  1. Name of the Apprentice(s) (100 characters max.)
  2. Why are you interested in learning this traditional art? (1,275 characters max.)
  3. Describe your skill level in this traditional art. (638 characters max.)
  4. How long have you known the master artist? (9638characters max.)
  5. What skills, styles or techniques do you expect to learn? (638 characters max.)
  6. Why is this tradition important to your community? (2,300 characters max.)


Part C: Master and Apprentice Work Plan
  1. How often will you meet? (638 characters max.)
  2. How long will each session last? (638 characters max.)
  3. Where and when will the meetings occur? (638 characters max.)
  4. Outline the goals of the apprenticeship. (1,275 characters max.)
  5. Outline what will be taught at each session. (638 characters max.)
  6. Outline program expenses. Be specific. See below for allowable costs. (638 characters max.)



Grant awards may not be used to fund lodging and food costs. The grant may be used for fees for the master teacher, supplies and/or equipment, travel expenses (for master or apprentice), books and educational materials.



Traditional Arts Apprenticeship applications are reviewed on a competitive basis using the following criteria:

  • Artistic strength of master according to the standards of the traditional community. (20%) 
  • Role of the artist and art form in community life and significance of tradition. (20%) 
  • Skill and commitment of the apprentice. (20%)
  • Feasibility of work plan and likelihood of a successfull collaboration between master and apprentice. (20%)
  • Potential impact of apprenticeship on continued vitality of the traditional art (20%)




All grant recommendations are presented to Maine Arts Commission members who approve the review process making the grant official.

The review process and delivery of funds can take up to six months. This means that grant funds may be used to reimburse costs incurred for the project after the grant has been approved. Please plan accordingly.


Agency staff are always here as a resource to you. We recommend contacting the correct staff person a minimum of two-weeks prior to submitting your application. 


GENERAL QUESTIONS about the application or review process

Kathy Ann Shaw Senior Grants Director or 207-287-2750

CONTENT QUESTION about the art forms

Kathleen Mundell Traditional Arts Specialist or 207-236-6741


Grant information is available in large print format by request. All Maine Arts Commission programs are accessible to people with disabilities. All programs funded by the Maine Arts Commission must also be accessible.