Puffin Foundation Grant: Solid Funding Option for Underrepresented Artists and Organizations

Similar to The Harpo Foundation, The Puffin Foundation Ltd. provides grants to individual artists and arts organizations that have historically been excluded from mainstream opportunities. Their mission outlines this succinctly:

The Puffin Foundation Ltd. has sought to open the doors of artistic expression by providing grants to artists and art organizations who are often excluded from mainstream opportunities due to their race, gender, or social philosophy.

Puffin Foundation Grants Overview

The namesake Puffin, a once endangered species which was brought back from the brink of extinction by a coordinated effort of concerned citizens, is the mascot for this generous foundation which aims to do something similar: to join with other concerned groups and individuals to ensure that the arts not merely survive, but flourish at all levels of our society.

Puffin Foundation Grants: Solid Funding Option for Underrepresented Artists and Organizations
The Puffin

How Much is a Puffin Foundation Grant?

Grant amounts from The Puffin Foundation vary, averaging $1,250 for individuals. The maximum award amount is $2,500, which places The Puffin Foundation grants in league with some of the other institutions we have covered, making this a fantastic starting point for early career and emerging artists in pursuit of their first or second major award.

What is the application process like?

Unfortunately, grant applications are not available online and must be requested in writing. To get an application, you must send a self addressed stamped envelope to an address in New Jersey, after which, the Foundation will mail you a paper application form, which must be filled out by hand.

Before you request an application, take note that you will have to mail a printed, hard copy of your portfolio to the Puffin Foundation along with the paper application form. In the digital age, this seems downright archaic. Producing a printed portfolio is not only time consuming, but it is probably going to cost you money as well, considering that not many artists these days maintain printed portfolios.

The volume of paperwork involved in these applications is more inline with The Guggenheim Fellowship, yet the award amounts remain modest, so do your homework and thoroughly review past grant winners prior to taking on the administrative burden of applying for this award.

The Foundation on Social Media

Currently at 300 followers, the Puffin Foundation Instagram is not an avenue through which artists should expect much exposure, although for an institution with such an old-school application process, I commend their effort in launching a new channel. Keep your eye on the feed because it regularly features events and updates from the foundation’s newly launched Puffin Cultural Forum, which is bringing exciting new program to Teanack, New Jersey.

Puffin Foundation Grant Winners

The Puffin Foundation has possibly funded some of the most wide ranging projects out of all the grant-makers reviewed by Artist Grant Resource. Some examples of past recipients include:

You should definitely take a deep dive in their database of grantees before committing to the time consuming application process.

Details

  • Grants average $1,250, max awards are $2,500
  • Great option for emerging artists

Cons

  • Time consuming paper applications: consider the administrative burden prior to applying
  • Modest award amount when you consider the difficulty of applying

Connect with the Puffin Foundation

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