Arts Response Grants for Organizations

The Creative Sonoma Arts Response Grants for Organizations are a one-time funding opportunity for nonprofit arts and cultural organizations in Sonoma County to produce creative projects in response to the 2017 Wildfires. 


Eligible projects can be in any arts discipline including, but not limited to dance, theater, media, visual, folk, literary, and design. Projects must be accessible to the public. Engaging community members in the project – planning, development, execution or otherwise – is encouraged.

Creative Sonoma is working with teaching artists on arts education projects through a separate program and as a result, projects that are predominantly focused on early childhood through college arts education are not eligible for this grant.

Applicants are NOT required to raise matching funds for the project, however, additional funds including individual donors, sponsorship, grants, admission fees, etc., are certainly welcome as indication of community support.


  • Support innovative creative projects in communities across Sonoma County in response to the fires
  • Support the arts organizations, and through them creative individuals, in Sonoma County
  • Build Sonoma County residents’ sense of our shared creativity and how a community comes together after a shared crisis
  • Increase the visibility of Creative Sonoma

Grant Amount

Up to $5000


Applications will be accepted from 501(c)(3) nonprofit arts organizations that are headquartered in Sonoma County. Cultural organizations* (historical societies, museums, cultural heritage organizations) may apply if applying in partnership with an arts organization. For-profit organizations and individuals are not eligible to apply for this grant. For extended details on eligibility, along with additional requirements and considerations, please carefully review the Guidelines linked below. 

*Qualifying cultural organizations include historical societies, museums, ethnic heritage organizations that focus on cultural expression through the arts, and those focused on the humanities. Please contact Creative Sonoma at 707-565-6134 if unsure whether a specific cultural organization is eligible to apply. 

Evaluation Criteria

  • Artistic Merit
  • Innovation and Creativity of Project
  • Potential Impact on Community
  • Community Partnerships and/or Alliances
  • Feasible Timeline and Realistic Budget
  • Completeness and Clarity of Application

Guidelines & Application

Deadline and Dates

The grant process has concluded.



Art Escape:  Sweet Home Sonoma is a collaborative creation, display, and event in recognition of our resilience and community spirit after the wildfires. Five art-making/creative writing sessions will be conducted across the valley: valley residents will paint 160 small birdhouses and insert their handwritten experience of the fire, which will be displayed on outside Art Escape on Highway 12 for two weeks and then distributed.

KRCB:  The station will produce two television and six radio short-length programs featuring local artists creating works in response to the North Bay Firestorm, either inspired by the disaster or drawn from their own experiences and struggles. Each of the two television videos will feature three different artists (for a total of six) and each of the artists will be profiled in their own radio short presentation.

Museums of Sonoma County:  In response to the firestorms that ravaged the North Bay region in October 2017, Museums of Sonoma County developed The Fire Project which consists of The Fire Collection, The Fire Wall, and an exhibition scheduled for fall 2018, The Fire Project is about memory, expression and our shared experience of the firestorms of 2017. 

Petaluma Arts Center:  In commemoration of the one-year anniversary of the 2017 Sonoma County wildfires, and in the spirit of artists serving as second-responders, the Petaluma Arts Center is devoting it’s October-December exhibition to an artistic exploration of the aftermath of the fires. The exhibition will include found or rescued objects from the fires transformed into art — and will include a storytelling element.

Rivertown Revival:  “RISE Sonoma” is the theme of the July 14, 2018 festival in Petaluma this year. Commissioned artwork includes an interactive sculpture piece and a collaboration of music and visual art to provide artwork for the main festival stage. The goal of this year’s theme is to deepen our sense of who we have become as a community since the transformational devastation of the fires.

Santa Rosa Symphony:  The Symphony has commissioned an original work for orchestra commemorating the impact of and recovery from the 2017 wildfires by esteemed composer and University of Michigan music professor Paul Dooley, a native of Santa Rosa. “Sonoma Strong” premieres July 29, 2018, at their fifth anniversary Free Community Concert.

Sonoma Valley Museum of Art:  The Sonoma Fire Stories exhibition is a multi-media presentation of community stories depicting the many facets of experience in the wake of the 2017 Northern California wildfires. The three-month exhibition is intended not only to preserve these stories but to place a spotlight on the strength and resiliency that has been demonstrated in order to support the community’s healing process.

Walking Elephant Theatre Company:  The THICKER THAN SMOKE Project is a series of documentary theatre pieces created by school students who were affected by the Sonoma County Wildfires of 2017. Students conduct interviews with their family members and neighbors, create an original script, and perform live documentary theatre projects with the aim to heal and build their community.

Return to Fire Recovery Resources homepage.