The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), a federal agency supporting artists and art organizations across the U.S., recently expanded eligibility for grant money to media produced for the Internet, interactive/mobile technologies, and digital games.
“We will continue to support television and radio,” explains Alice Myatt, director of media arts at the NEA, “but we are also going to support content developed for the Web, for theatrical release, for mobile phones, content to be distributed via satellite, and even content for game platforms.”
The NEA decided to expand the grant to games due to their ability to reach a large audience. Video games are viable grant candidates because technology allows anyone to experience art at any place and any time. Myatt said the NEA also wants the grant foster new forms of art, regardless of platform, and that by embracing games, the agency will demonstrate how art is evolving.
The NEA is the largest government grantor to art organizations in the U.S., with grants typically ranging from $10,000 to $200,000, based on the scope. Myatt stated that the NEA will judge games on their artistic merit and excellence, but did not identify more specific guidelines. Wonder how Heavy Rain would e looked at? Could a mature game be grated a grant.
Panels made of up experts will judge entries, and only nonprofit, tax-exempt 501(c) 3 organizations can apply. Sorry EA and Square. The NEA will have to explain the guidelines on June 15, July 13 and August 10. The deadline for entries is September 1.