Grant Program

Alternative Exposure

Announcing: Alternative Exposure 2020 - Second Round of Emergency Relief Funding for Artists

In response to the continued needs of the Bay Area arts community during these trying times, Southern Exposure is offering a second round of Alternative Exposure Emergency Relief Grants to support local artists and arts groups who are in dire need of support, with funds becoming available in December 2020. SoEx recognizes that artists are facing unforeseen and potentially catastrophic challenges right now due to canceled and postponed exhibitions, performances, and other gigs and day jobs due to COVID-19. 

Southern Exposure, with the support of San Francisco Grants for the Arts, is allocating a total of $19,000 to support San Francisco-based working artists in need right now. Nineteen grants of $1,000 each will be made available to San Francisco-based visual and multidisciplinary artists. Priority will be given to artists who are Black, Indigenous, POC, elder, LGBTQ+, disabled, immune-compromised, and immigrants. Funds may be used to cover any needed expenses that are related to lost income due to COVID-19.

Applications for this round of Alternative Exposure Emergency Grants are now closed.

About Alternative Exposure

Southern Exposure's Alternative Exposure (AltEx) grant program supports the independent, self-organized work of artists and small groups that play a critical and significant role within the San Francisco Bay Area arts community. AltEx provides monetary awards to foster the development and presentation of artist-led projects and programs that are direct, accessible, and open to the public.

In Round 13 of the Alternative Exposure Grant Program, Southern Exposure distributed over $80,000 to 18 projects with awards ranging from $2,000 to $4,750. The awarded public projects will take place in the counties of San Francisco, Alameda, and Contra Costa. 18 recipients were selected from 63 applications: Anthology, Art List Bay Area and The Just A List, Bay Area Art Stars, The Bay Area Contemporary Arts Archive (BACAA), Cloaca Projects, CTRL+SHFT Collective, The HIV Howler: Transmitting Art + Activism, Incline Gallery, Interface Gallery, latent image, Light Field, Living Room Light Exchange. Mutual Stores Collective, Organizing Power, Tich Tourch Festival, Unity Press, Womxn* Art Handlers, and yucca. The 2019 grantees were selected by an outside panel of three artist organizers comprised of James McAnally, Founder and Executive Director of The Luminary, St Louis, MO; Sophia Wang, Artist and Co-Founder of Heavy Breathing (and two-time Alternative Exposure Grantee); Leila Weefur, Artist and A/V Editor in Chief, Art Practical.

A Brief History

The program, launched in 2007 in partnership with the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, was developed in response to the dynamic work of artists and small groups that have long been emblematic of the San Francisco Bay Area's arts community. Now in its thirteenth year, Alternative Exposure has awarded $953,400 in direct funds to 219 Bay Area projects to date thanks to major support from the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts and the San Francisco Grants for the Arts. In 2017 and 2018, Facebook’s Artist in Residence program provided additional funding to expand visibility for grantees with short video documentaries about their projects and a culminating in an Alternative Exposure Convening in December 2019. Southern Exposure is committed to continuing to serve as a resource for the independent visual arts community through Alternative Exposure and our other programs.

The Regional Regranting Program: A National Network

Since developing Alternative Exposure with Southern Exposure, The Andy Warhol Foundation has invested in the creation of a growing national network of regional regranting programs. The Warhol Foundation aims to support the independent creative activity of artists by partnering with leading artist-centered, visual arts organizations across the country. Groups like Southern Exposure allow them to reach the sizeable population of informal, non-incorporated artist collectives and projects. SoEx is proud to be the inaugural member of this important and growing nationwide system of support!