Opportunities for Artists and Arts Organizations

DCASE Homepage  >  Opportunities for Artists and Arts Organization


For regular updates on artist opportunities and grants announced by DCASE, please sign up for our Newsletters and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.




Special Events Permit Application

DCASE processes Special Events applications for outdoor festivals, street and art/craft fairs and athletic events. Special Event Permits will be issued but are subject to change based on updated health and safety guidelines from either the City of Chicago or State of Illinois. All events must follow guidelines in place at the time of the event. For more information and to apply online, visit our Special Events Permit Application website.


"Art is Labor." Creative Worker Rights Webinars

Tuesdays in July, 10am via Zoom

Join DCASE and the Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection (BACP) for an upcoming webinar as part of the "Art is Labor." campaign for creative worker rights. The sessions designed for workers and employers will provide information on Chicago’s labor laws, an overview on the new Illinois Freelance Worker Protection Act (FWPA), and resources from organizations that can support you as a creative worker, or you as an employer of creative workers. Webinars will be recorded and posted to the campaign website. For full webinar descriptions and further resources, visit chicago.gov/CreativeWork. Register using the links below.

  • Tuesday, July 9, 10am – For Employers of Creative Workers: Know the Labor Laws | Register
  • Tuesday, July 16, 10am – For Creative Workers: Know Your Rights | Register
  • Martes 23 de julio, 10am – Empleadores de Trabajadores Creativos: Conozca las leyes laborales aplicables | Registrarse
  • Martes 30 de julio, 10am – Trabajadores Creativos: Conozca sus derechos laborales | Registrarse


Chicago Soul Poems

Who, What, Where is the Soul of Chicago?

Now accepting online poetry submissions at ChicagoSoulPoem.com

Chi-Soul Workshop with Chicago Poet Laureate avery r. young

Sunday, July 7, Austin Branch Library, 5615 W. Race Ave., Chicago, IL 60644

Register online

All Chicago residents are invited to write, record and share a Chicago Soul Poem, written in the form of a soloem (pronounced so-lo-em). It is a new poetic form, created by the Chicago Poet Laureate, avery r. young, with 10 lines and five stanzas. A Chicago Soul Poem is written about a person, place or thing that is indicative of the Second City. Selected soloems will be featured on social media and other public-facing outlets. For more information, visit chicago.gov/PoetLaureate.


Healing Arts Chicago Summer Celebration: An Arts x Health x Wellness Summit

Saturday, July 27, 10am-5pm

Malcolm X College, 1900 W. Jackson Blvd.

Register to Attend  |  Register as a Community Partner for the Resource Fair  |  Register to Volunteer

Get Involved with Healing Arts Chicago's Summer Celebration on July 27th at Malcolm X College! DCASE is looking for Volunteers to help on the day of the event and Community Partners to participate in the Resource Fair.


Request For Proposals (RFP) for Rental of Event Security Fences

Virtual Pre-Proposal Conference: Wednesday, July 17, 2024, 11am

Deadline for Proposals: Tuesday, July 30, 2024

The City of Chicago, Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events seeks proposals from qualified firms to provide rental of event security fences. For more information and to download the RFP, visit the webpage.


Performing Arts, Music, Dance, and Theater Programming Submissions 2025

Apply Online

2024 Performing Arts Submissions are currently closed. We are currently accepting submissions for 2025 programs. Are you an artist or arts organization interested in participating in DCASE Performing Arts, Music, Dance, or Theater programming? Due to the volume of responses, applications will be reviewed on a monthly basis. Should an opportunity arise for partnership, you will be contacted directly by a member of the DCASE Performing Arts Programming Team.


Serve as a Grant Panelist

Apply Online

The Cultural Grants team seeks Chicago-area individuals to serve as grant application reviewers. Candidates must have arts and culture experience and be available for approximately 40 total hours over a period of six weeks. There is compensation for service.


Learning Hub in the Learning Lab

More Info and Apply Online

The Learning Lab is a free public space that makes learning visible.

Do you want to make the Chicago Cultural Center your hub for educational and creative activities?

Educators, artists, and non-profit organizations are invited to submit proposals to make our Lab your Hub.


Share your Feedback with us!

Complete the Survey Online

If you are an artist, creative worker or arts administrator – we want to hear from you! DCASE wants to learn more about how to support you as we build out our cultural resource offerings. Are you interested in workshops, trainings, conferences, or virtual resources? Let us know how we can support you.

Complete this survey to share information with us about you and the types of support you need. The first 350 individuals that complete the survey will receive a gift card to the Buddy Store!


Cultural Community Rental Path

The Cultural Community Rental Path was created to reduce barriers to entry for Chicago's artists and arts organizations to produce free and open to the public events at the Chicago Cultural Center. The process features a reduced room rental rate and waived standard equipment fees (other production and operations costs still apply). For more information, visit ChicagoCulturalCenter.org.


Apply for the Small Business Improvement Fund

The Small Business Improvement Fund (SBIF), offered by the Department of Planning and Development (DPD), provides grant funding for permanent building improvements and repairs across the city.

SBIF is offered to tenants and owners of industrial and commercial properties. Program participants can receive grants to cover between 30% and 90% of the cost of remodeling work, with a maximum grant of $150,000 for commercial properties and $250,000 for industrial properties. The grant, which is administered by SomerCor on the City’s behalf, does not have to be repaid. To learn about eligibility, attend an information session, and apply, please visit Chicago.gov/SBIF.

July's prioritized geographies are the following TIF districts (the districts change each month):


Nonprofit Capacity Building Program

Offered by the Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection (BACP), this program aims to support nonprofits that were disproportionately impacted by the pandemic through technical assistance and capacity building services support. While programming concluded in 2023, access past informational webinars online:

To learn more, visit Chicago.gov/BACPRecoveryPlan.


Call for Submissions: “Now Playing...Sights & Sounds” in the Learning Lab

Applications accepted on a rolling basis

The Learning Lab at the Chicago Cultural Center is an interactive studio that offers sights, sounds, and experiences for visitors of all ages and a wide range of abilities. Reinvigorated by design team Made in Englewood.

Organizations and artists from around the world are invited to submit their work to play in the sound dome and projection wall in the Learning Lab. For more information visit: "Now Playing...Sights & Sounds" in the Learning Lab.


City of Chicago Mural Registry

Applications accepted on a rolling basis

The Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE) manages the City of Chicago Mural Registry, a publicly-accessible database documenting the growing collection of murals across the city on both private and public property. Artists, organizations and property owners are encouraged to register completed murals by submitting an application. For more information about the registration, application and process, visit Chicago.gov/muralregistry.


Nominate a Neighborhood Cultural Spotlight for 2024

Chicago Cultural Center, Welcome Center, 1st Floor North

Neighborhood Cultural Spotlights feature people, places and things nominated and recognized for a cultural contribution to their neighborhood’s vitality, and celebrates cultural assets in Chicago’s varied and vibrant 77 community areas.

Neighborhood Cultural Spotlights can be given to your local puppeteer, the house on the block with sculptural installations in the yard, the neighborhood culture compiler who sends out a newsletter, the local arts supporter whom your community relies upon, etc.

Know a person, place or thing in your neighborhood that deserves a Neighborhood Cultural Spotlight?  Nominate now

Check out the current Neighborhood Cultural Spotlights in the Welcome Center and then nominate your favorite neighborhood cultural asset!


Digital Access for ALL Chicagoans

Chicago families know the importance of quality, affordable internet, computers, and resources to participate in today’s society. For information on no-cost resources for eligible households to ensure they are supported and safe in today’s digital world, visit Chicago.gov.


Volunteer for DCASE

Applications accepted on a rolling basis

Share your love of Chicago’s culture, history and architecture by volunteering with DCASE. With DCASE you will connect guests (Chicagoans and visitors alike) with some of the city’s cultural treasures, such as Millennium Park, the Chicago Cultural Center, Clarke House Museum and the Taste of Chicago. Volunteers help in a variety of ways: leading tours, providing information, greeting and wayfinding at events and more. Information and application


Call for Corporate Partners

DCASE produces Chicago's largest free festivals including Taste of Chicago, Chicago Blues Festival and Chicago Jazz Festival plus a variety of other festivals and events throughout the year. Our goal is to engage companies, agencies and other partners to add value to the City's events while bringing brands directly to local consumers to increase brand awareness, generate valuable press exposure, drive traffic and sales, and build customer loyalty. To learn more about partnership opportunities, visit ChicagoPartnerships.com or email at chicagopartnerships@cityofchicago.org.




City Marketing Assets + Resource Guide

Access a partial list of City of Chicago Marketing Assets available to the local arts industry. This was compiled by the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events for its Performing Arts Convening: Marketing and Audience Development, held October 26, 2022. Download the guide (PDF).


Creative Worker Resources

This is a listing of resources available locally and nationally to support creatives, from job boards, to professional advancement programs, to emergency funding.


Navigating Recovery: Arts and Culture Financial and Operating Treads in ChicagoNavigating Recovery: Arts and Culture Financial and Operating Trends in Chicago

SMU DataArts has partnered with the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events (DCASE) to produce this first look at the health of many of the city’s arts and cultural organizations before, during, and emerging from the pandemic. The report examines financial and operating trends among its applicant organizations from 2019 through 2022, and analyzes variations for organizations with different characteristics such as budget size, discipline, and mission focus. A look in the rearview mirror provides context for the underlying challenges that a lot of organizations are facing today. Download the Executive Summary and Full Report.