Grants for Arts Malaysia

Financial aid for Artists

At one point of the career of any artist, there will be a need to inject funds. This can be done through financial aid or grants. In most cases, such assistance are provided for by the government while there are situations where there are corporations that offer such help as well. Where grants are concerned, they are usually designed to help artists build their career which might incur funding. In return, they will need to be accountable and to provide some form of deliverable. Here are some of the grants in Malaysia that are able to help.

MyCreative Ventures

This is by far the most significant grant offered by the Malaysian government. It is managed by MyCreative Ventures which is the investment arm for the government established to grow the creative industry. To do that, equity or debt investments are used which are mainly catered for businesses in the creative industry across the country. Through such efforts, it helps to increase gross income and create more jobs in this sector which is then aimed at benefiting a larger cause which is to boost the GDP. MyCreative is targeted for companies and businesses that are involved in areas like literature, content creation, cultural arts, fashion, design, performing arts, visual arts and such. To be eligible for this loan, the applicant must be:

  1. A Malaysian-incorporated business with a minimum Malaysian shareholding of 51%
  2. RM20,000 paid-up capital and must be in any of the creative industries supported (10)
  3. Between 12 and 15 months of operational track record for applications for loan

The Emerging Artist Incubation Funding Programme

Offered by CENDANA or Cultural Economic Development Agency, the Emerging Artist Incubation Funding Programme is the first effort of such kind from this organization. It is a very prominent programme as it forms a strategic pillar of CENDANA. The idea behind this grant is to grow the local arts and culture scene. This is done through offering funding of up to RM30,000 that will help cover all the expenses and process involved in the creation of arts by the recipient. The funds are channeled for the creation, re-development or adaptation of content by the practitioners. Areas that are covered include visual arts, independent music and in the performance arts. In the Visual Arts department, artists can embark into drawings, paintings, ceramic art, design, photography and print-making. Meanwhile, those in performance arts can embark into theater, dance or music. Musical artists can apply for this fund as long as they are independent and not attached with any major recording lables and their subsidiaries. The most significant factor and criteria to applying for this grant is that it must be relevant to the Malaysian context that will help grow this industry.

Arts in the Community Grant

Organized by Kakiseni, this grant provides financial assistance for artists in the performing arts sector. The total amount provided here is RM6,000 per project and that can be used to help those in small-scale productions. This can be simple shows such as sketch comedies, puppet shows and such. The idea is to help performer connect to new audiences especially if they are from communities with little or no exposure.

Yayasan Telekom Malaysia

YTM or Yayasan Telekom Malaysia is involved in the development of the arts, culture and heritage industries in Malaysia. it helps by offering funding assistance to those involved in these industries so that they can create more effective works and then bridging to their intended audiences. Among the efforts offered by YTM is the YTM Cinematic Arts Programme Scholarship or CAPS where it helps students to study and excel in the film industry thereby gaining employment in the industry. Meanwhile, YTM is also involved in promoting Asian Culture through its scholars and to maintain Malaysia’s heritage through Muzium Telekom.

JFKL Small Grant

This is a grant offered by the Japan Foundation Kuala Lumpur. The grant is designed for various sectors and fields including sports, social science, the humanities and most notably, in the arts. Recipients for this grants can use the aid to venture into activities that can promote and create more awareness about Japan in the country. The idea is to encourage better and more effective multilateral cultural exchange between Japan and the countries in ASEAN. The grant can be used for all related activities and expenditure covering accommodation, transportation, honorarium, per diem and such. Features of this grant include:

  1. Must be projects that are aimed to promote the understanding of Japan via culture, arts and intellectual exchanges. This can be done via workshops, screenings, conference and other activities. The grant offered range is between RM500 and RM14,000.
  2. The first proposal must be submitted 3 months before the kick-off date of the project and application form a month after
  3. This grant is open to registered organizations in Malaysia, Singapore and Brunei

Asia Center Small Grant Malaysia

The Asia Center Small Grant Malaysia is a newer grant offered by JFKL. Applicants for this grant can request between RM500 and RM30,000. Projects must be involved in bilateral or multilateral areas covering collaboration between Southeast Asia and Japan is evident. This is done via mutual understanding or grassroot exchange like cultural activities, art projects, performances and others. This is very important as it helps to build stronger cultural ties between Japan and the countries across the ASEAN region.


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