Category Archives: grant

Just when I was about to give up…

Font graphic reads, just when I was about to give up.

“With 1 day left”, as stated in my previous newsletter, I had embarrassed the reality of not reaching my $6K goal on iFundWomen. Although I would have liked a different turnout, in all honesty I was at peace with this realization and the idea of retiring my project without the completion of the final cut.

In that moment of feeling at harmony with my decision, a few hours later… just when I was about to give up… I received an email notification from the Arts & Humanities Council of Montgomery County notifying me of a grant award.

I received the funding needed to complete I Am More Than My Hair.

The Universe is miraculous.
 

In the spirit of transparency, I wasn’t able to raise the funds to create an accessible exhibition as I hoped for my exhibits next year. However, I will seek support from foundations in order to make this happen.

What does this mean?

I will see I Am More Than My Hair film into completion, as far as I can possibly reach. First focusing on the expenses related to accessibly (for blind and deaf audiences) and the sound mixing and color correction

Once it’s complete in the film festival circuit (December 2020) I will make it available online. I’m not sure of the platform as yet but I promise I’ll figure it out. Once I do, you’ll be the first to know.

This has been a 6 year journey.

As I wind down on the completion of, I Am More Than My Hair, I’m off working on other projects –  another documentary film and my first horror film!

I am forever grateful for the people who supported me and believed in my projects along the years. Thank you to everyone who took the time to support my campaign (it remains open in order to qualify for current grants on the iFundWomen platform). 

Please know that I appreciate you.

With gratitude,

Alyscia Cunningham
Director | Producer | Cinematographer
www.Alyscia.com

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Grants for artist of color, about the black experience? I AM the black experience.

It’s no doubt that the grant process is frustrating, especially when most recipients look nothing like me… a woman of color. On the other hand, grants focused on supporting artist of color make it very clear that the “artist” work should encompass the “black experience”.

But I am the black experience.

I am the black experience when I step out into the world and I am judged FIRST based on the color of my skin and not my talents. I am the black experience when I’m constantly in the position of having to fight for my children to be treated equally in a public school institution. I am the black experience when I am in fear and question if my husband will safely return home after a “routine traffic stop”. I am the black experience when I live in a system created against people who look like me.

And my list goes on…

Although I wish the grant process… well life in general, wasn’t biased, it is my unfortunate reality. When I apply, though I do my best and hope for a great outcome, I know that most likely the “look” of the grantees won’t change.

Then on the other end of the spectrum, some of the organizations that fund projects by artist of color has a specific criteria. The topic of focus should include slavery, racial injustice, police brutality, immigration, etc. Is that all the black experience encompasses?

In this case, my work is too black for one… not black enough for the other… and a box I simply can’t fit in.

Does this mean I change the direction of my work? Absolutely not. Although this isn’t the case for all organizations, it is evident that I have to continue working 3 times as hard. But not to worry. I get what I set my mind to. Nonetheless, I do look forward to the day when more opportunities live outside the box. Who knows? I may just start something new… in due time.

You can help me finish my documentary film, I Am More Than My Hair.

Tax-deductible donation - I Am More Than My Hair

 

I-Am-More-Than-My-Hair-book-launch-smallres

Join me as I present my research behind my project, meet the women who participated and take part in a Q&A. Book signing to follow.

Sunday, September 9, 2018
5-7PM

Busboys and Poets
5311 Baltimore Avenue
Hyattsville, MD 20781

There will be an open menu for food and drinks (alcoholic and non-alcoholic). Tickets are $10. Proceeds from tickets sales will go towards the finishing funds for my film.

To learn more and get get tickets, visit Busboys and Poets or Eventbrite.