AUSTIN — September 6, 2019 – The Texas Commission on the Arts (TCA) has approved funding of 868 grants in its first funding round for fiscal year 2020. The grants total over $8.9 million and will go to nonprofits and units of government in 111 Texas cities. These grants include all of the Arts Create program grants, the revived Cultural District Project grants, the first of two funding rounds for the Arts Respond Project program, the quarterly Arts Respond Performance Support program, and the quarterly Commission Initiatives and Designated Funding category.

“This spring, the legislature affirmed the important role the arts play in Texas’ economy and vibrant community life by appropriating increased funds to TCA. We are proud to invest these funds with arts organizations in our great state,” said Gary Gibbs, executive director of TCA. “The substantial work that our grantees are doing not only advances the creative economy in Texas, but provides valuable art experiences for Texans in rural communities, schools, hospitals, social service settings, military facilities and more.” For the full list of grants organized by city, please visit

TCA Commissioners also approved the designation of three new cultural districts. Cultural districts are special zones that harness the power of cultural resources to stimulate economic development and community revitalization. These districts can become focal points for generating business, attracting tourists, stimulating cultural development and fostering civic pride. The new cultural districts are the Downtown Beaumont Cultural Arts District, the Original Denton District, and the Arts! Longview Cultural District. This designation brings the total number of cultural districts in Texas to 43.

Arts Create grants

• Provide year-round operational support to Texas arts organizations with budgets over $50,000

• For fiscal year 2020, 426 Arts Create grants totaling over $3.2 million are allocated to 426 organizations in 76 Texas cities.

Arts Respond Cultural District Project grants

• Provide support to projects that use the arts to diversify local economies, generate revenue, and attract visitors and investment

• Are available to arts organizations and government entities verified as based in TCA-designated cultural districts

• For fiscal year 2020, 43 applicants from 20 different cultural districts in 17 Texas cities will receive funding totaling $4.6 million.

Arts Respond Project grants

• Fund arts-based projects that address one of the priority areas of economic development; education; health and human services; natural resources and agriculture; or public safety and criminal justice

• 268 grants are approved to receive a total of $831,463 in this program

• Among these 268 grants, ten applicants are receiving a total of $44,000 for Arts Healing Grants for Active Service Members and Veterans

• Grants will go to 268 arts organizations in 58 cities.

Arts Respond Performance Support grants

• Provide partial support to help applicants host an artist from the Texas Touring Roster in their community

• 128 grants for this quarter will go to 98 organizations and units of government in 57 Texas cities.

• These grants total $153,349.

Commission Initiatives and Designated Funding grant program

• Distributed $50,000 received from the National Endowment for the Arts via one $17,500 grant to conduct the Poetry Out Loud high school competition in Texas and another $32,500 grant to conduct folk arts apprenticeships and related programs and documentation

• An additional $5,000 was approved to support the costs of the National Guild for Community Arts Education conference in Austin, which will be held October 30-November 2, 2019.

The mission of the Texas Commission on the Arts (TCA) is to advance our state economically and culturally by investing in a creative Texas. TCA supports a diverse and innovative arts community in Texas, throughout the nation and internationally by providing resources to enhance economic development, arts education, cultural tourism and artist sustainability initiatives. For more information on TCA and its programs, please visit