National Lottery Support for Individual Artists Programme (SIAP)

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All Funding for Individuals

The aim of the overall Support for Individual Artists Programme (SIAP) is to support artists across all disciplines to create work and develop their practice.

Broadly, awards can be for specific projects, specialised research or personal artistic development. These guidance notes provide information on how to apply to 2 SIAP schemes – others are also available:

  • General Art Awards
  • Artists Career Enhancement Scheme (ACES)

SIAP Schemes Covered by separate Guidance Notes also available on our website:

  • Minority Ethnic Artists’ Mentoring & Residency Scheme
  • Major Individual Awards
  • Artists International Development Fund (AIDF)
  • Musical Instruments for Individuals

Each of these has a different focus in terms of the proposal to be funded. You should read the scheme-specific details in the guidance below carefully before application.

Who can apply?

Eligible applicants to SIAP are as follows:

  • Artists of all disciplines and in all types of working practice (including DJs) In a limited number of cases, individual technical staff/administrators of professional artistic companies may also be eligible.
  • Emerging Artists: The Arts Council particularly welcomes applications from emerging artists - an emerging artist is someone who is in the early stage of their career as a professional artist. They are developing their artist ‘voice’ and are in the process of establishing a reputation and recognition among critics, galleries, producers etc, and will have practised as a professional artist for less than 5 years.
  • Employees of statutory bodies , undergraduates and postgraduates are eligible to apply but they must prove that the funds which they are seeking are for work/costs which are not properly the concern of their employer and/or are not related to their work or academic study. They must submit evidence of this in the form of a letter on headed paper from their Head of Department.
  • In the case of post-graduate students, the letter must clearly state the title of the student’s PhD thesis and include a declaration by the Head of Department. This declaration must state “The project for which funds are being sought does not form part of any academic work undertaken in relation to the above-titled PhD nor will it be assessed as part of any academic course”.
  • Applicants undertaking a Masters or a PhD must also include a separate statement which provides information on how the project applied for differs from their Masters or PhD work.

Please note: The Arts Council may use its own judgement in determining this matter.

Eligible applicants must also

  • Have made a contribution to artistic activities in Northern Ireland for a minimum period of 1 year within the last 5 years.
  • Live in Northern Ireland
  • Be at least 18yrs old and not in secondary education.

What you can apply for

Eligible costs vary across schemes but can include:

  • Project assistance
  • Art materials
  • ”Buying time” to replace other earned income costs lost due to time spent on the intended project/creating new work.* Eg, if you were taking unpaid leave from work to focus on writing a novel.
  • Residency costs (NB: only via specific schemes)
  • Artistic or technical fees including those towards production or post-production costs associated with presentation or exhibition of work
  • Venue hire e.g. rehearsal space
  • Travel costs, including mileage costs (@25.7p per mile) and air travel
  • Subsistence costs @£25 per day
  • Technical equipment related to the project/proposal** (equipment requests cannot comprise more than 50% of the value of your request)
  • IT Equipment **: (equipment requests cannot comprise more than 50% of the value of your request; a maximum contribution of £1,200 will be made towards laptops and pcs, and £500 towards tablet computers.)

* If you are applying for loss of earnings the Arts Council acknowledges an average of up to £125 per day as a set contribution. We will not award a higher rate per day, so you should apply for costs on that basis if you are applying for replacement costs for up to 5 working days. If you are applying to “buy time” for a period longer than 5 working days you should set a weekly/monthly rate which reflects a lower per diem cost. You should set out clearly how you have costed your time. It is unlikely that the Arts Council will be able to cover the full value of the replacement costs,but will aim to make a contribution towards it.

** If you are including costs for technical or creative equipment as part of your application it’s important you tell us:

  • why the equipment is necessary for the project and appropriate for your needs
  • why buying equipment is more appropriate than hiring it, where applicable
  • your plans for continued use of the asset after the end of the project
  • your plans for maintenance, storage and insurance, and any additional ongoing costs after the project ends

If you do not include this information, we may decide not to fund the equipment element of your request.

How to apply?

You must apply using our online system. We will not accept applications in hard copy or by email.

If you feel you have a disability which affects your ability to complete the online application form, please contact the University of Atypical (UoA). The UoA will provide tailored advice and support to D/deaf, disabled and Neurodiverse applicants when submitting application to ACNI Programmes.

  • Online applications may be edited, saved and returned up to the closing date.
  • You must submit all mandatory enclosures associated with the application at the same time as your application, ie. they must be uploaded to your online application prior to its submission. These enclosures are listed on the Attachments page within the online application and are detailed below.
  • Please ensure that you leave sufficient time to upload all documents to the system as there can be long delays as the closing deadline approaches and the system will shut down at 12 noon precisely on the closing date, 31 August 2023. If your complete application is not fully uploaded when the system closes, your application will not be accepted.
  • If you submit your application by the closing deadline, you will receive an automated email advising that your application has been successfully submitted to the system. If you do not receive this email, your application has not been submitted.

Please remember that it is your responsibility to ensure that we receive the application form and uploaded enclosures by the closing time and date.