“Queen City Soup” is a regional micro-grant program for emerging and established artists and community activists in the Charlotte metropolitan area. This quarterly event seeks proposals from local artists for projects in the range of $1500-$2500. The projects must have some tangible benefit to community, and projects that have a broad public impact are encouraged. Project Art Aid organizes the events, which include food and drinks, an opportunity to meet the artists, and a program where the artists pitch their projects to the attendees.
Attendees pay $10-15 to attend the event, which gives them an opportunity to vote for the project that they would like to fund. The artist that receives the most votes wins the micro-grant consisting of all of the proceeds from the ticket sales. Grants have ranged from $900 – $1350, but we were recently awarded a matching grant from the Knight Foundation of Charlotte, which will double the size of the grants. Projects funded have included a documentary film project about homelessness in Charlotte, a recycled/re-purposed item fashion show, a children’s art’s festival, two school beautification projects, and funding for a non-profit organization that helps recently immigrated women learn fundamental language, financial and business skills. Additionally, we have created a community of grass-roots arts patrons, many of whom routinely come out to meet and support local artists in their community.