1. About AI Firefly Project | 2. About the Commission | 3. About Human Rights | 4. Information Session
5. Eligibility Requirements | 6. Review Process | 7. Production and Evaluation Process | 8. Apply | 9. FAQs

Eligibility Requirements

Applicants and projects must meet the following eligibility requirements:

  • Applicants must be citizens or permanent residents of the United States of America.
  • Applications from individuals and collaborative artist groups are accepted; however, applications from incorporated organizations are not eligible.
  • Applicants must be residing and working in the New York City tri-state area.
  • Applicants must demonstrate a history of successful community collaborations. Outstanding emerging artists and arts groups with two-year professional history will also be considered.
  • ¥ Applicant must propose a project that substantially addresses one of Amnesty InternationalÕs global human rights priorities.
  • Applicants must make a commitment to produce the project by December 2006 for public presentation on and after International Human Rights Day on December 10; the presentation could include full-scale production of a theatrical performance, launch of a new media or internet-based project, premiere screening of a film or video project, opening reception for a public art project, or similar presentation.
  • Applicants are encouraged to propose innovative work that critically considers the relationship between contemporary artistic practices, including “activist” artistic practices, and human rights.

In addition, projects must abide by the following guidelines regarding appropriate use of funds:

  • Funds must only be used for project-specific production expenses.
  • The commission is for the creation of a new work or new component of an existing work. Projects that have completed the “development” or “pre-production” phase are eligible to apply, but projects that have completed “production” and seek distribution, outreach, or “finishing” funds are not eligible to apply.

Ineligible expenses include:

  • General operating expenses
  • Capital purchases, including the purchase of equipment
  • Any expenses that cannot be documented with an invoice or receipt
  • Artist fees payable to the applicant(s) exceeding $500
  • Additional artist fees exceeding $500 (total artist fees may not exceed $1,000)

Ineligible projects include:

  • Projects with total budgets greater than $20,000
  • Projects intended solely for internal or promotional use

>back to top

Review Process

Proposals will be reviewed by a panel composed of curators, presenters, artists, and human rights experts. Evaluation of proposals will be based on the following review criteria:

  • Relevance to Amnesty International’s human rights priorities
  • Quality and innovation of project concept
  • Artistic merit and professional record
  • Feasibility of proposed project
  • Anticipated impact of proposed project

The panel will recommend up to three proposals. Amnesty International Firefly Project members will select one project for funding from the pool of recommended proposals, taking into consideration the resources of the collective. During the proposal review period, Amnesty International Firefly Project members may contact an applicant for a phone or an in-person interview to discuss the proposal.

Applicants will be notified of the status of their proposal by e-mail on September 1, 2006. Declined proposals may be referred to other potential sources of foundation and community funding.

>back to top

Production and Evaluation Process

The selected artist or group must execute an award agreement with AI Firefly that requires the artist to complete the proposed project according to the work plan and budget described in the proposal.

The artist will be required to submit progress reports to ensure that the project is being completed according to schedule. The artist will submit receipts and a payment release form to AI Firefly for monthly reimbursement, by check, up to the total amount of the commission.

AI Firefly and the artist will collaborate on a series of final programs around the exhibition/premiere of the project in early December to coincide with International Human Rights Day (on December 10). These programs may include screenings or performances, an artist talk or panel discussion, or other programs as determined by AI Firefly. AI Firefly will assume responsibility for producing and paying for these programs. One program may be a benefit to help offset costs incurred by AI Firefly in presenting the commission.

The artist will submit to AI Firefly an evaluation summary and final report no later than January 1, 2006.

>back to top

Apply In 3 Steps

1. Download and review the program guidelines.
Download the program guidelines in PDF form here:

2. Download and complete the application form.
Download the application form in Microsoft Word format here: If you need an application form in another editable format, please contact AI Firefly for assistance.

Applicants are also required to submit work samples in the format described on the final page of the application form.

3. Submit application form and work samples.
Completed applications must be submitted via e-mail to Work samples may be submitted via e-mail or postal mail according to the W
ork Sample Guidelines.

Mail work samples to:

AI Firefly Commission
Attn: Mackenzie Jessen
332 Bleeker Street
New York, NY 10014

The application deadline is Friday, August 4, 2006. Application forms AND work samples must be received—not postmarked—by Friday, August 4, 2006. Absolutely no hand-delivered work samples - please plan accordingly. Late applications will not be reviewed.

>back to top

Frequently Asked Questions

I have a bunch of ideas! Can I submit five proposals?
Applicants may submit only one project proposal. If you have questions about which proposal might best fit the commission’s purpose, you may contact AI Firefly—we will be happy to advise you.

I have a great idea for a creative activist action on human rights day, but I’m not an artist. Can I apply?
The commission is specifically intended to support art projects. Applicants must demonstrate a 2-year exhibition or presentation history to be eligible for consideration.
Conceptual and unconventional projects are eligible; however, activist actions that are not in dialogue with the contemporary art community of the discipline(s) relevant to the application will not be considered for this commission.

I’m a student. Can I apply?
Students with a 2-year exhibition or presentation history are eligible to submit a proposal for the commission.

I’ve had a great idea for this public art project for a few years, and have started reaching out to partners and raising money, but we haven’t started. Are works-in-progress eligible?
Absolutely. We will consider supporting a project that is already in progress, as long as the project is still in a development stage. Only projects that have already completed production and are seeking “finishing funds” or funds solely for outreach and distribution are ineligible.

I have a really great website with all of my art on it. Can I just send you a URL where you can view my work instead of sending JPEGs as required in the work sample guidelines?
You must submit work samples in the format described in the application form. Websites are accepted only as documentation of internet-based projects.

My project is interview-based, and some of the participants may express views that contradict Amnesty International’s positions. Is the project eligible?
We support dialogue around human rights issues of relevance to Amnesty International, and applicant projects may represent a variety of perspectives. However, projects that specifically advocate a policy that is not supported by Amnesty International are not appropriate for this commission. Refer to the Amnesty International website and contact AI Firefly staff if you have questions about the appropriateness of your project.

My project addresses a human rights issue, but IÕm not sure if it qualifies as a priority for Amnesty International. How can I get more information?
First, check the Amnesty International website. Issues that are addressed in current campaigns qualify as human rights priorities. Issues that are not addressed in a current campaign on which Amnesty International has taken a public position are also eligible for consideration. If you canÕt tell or arenÕt sure, contact AI Firefly.

Applicants may download the Commission Guidelines at:

>back to top

Site by: