Arts and Culture Fund

This fund supports arts and cultural projects that deliver outcomes that support the Aho Tini vision and focus areas.

Fund details 

Opens: Thursday 01 February 2024
Closed: Thursday 28 March 2024 
Contact: Grace Hoete, Arts Advisor:
Past allocations: Past allocations (335KB PDF)

Successful projects will deliver to Aho Tini with the focus of this round on the areas where the number of applications and grants this year have been low, this includes applications from mana whenua, Māori, Pasifika and for projects that are working with visual arts or dance.

If you have any questions about our funding please contact us via  

First-time applicants

Read the information on this page, then register and apply online through our funding portal: Funding Portal - Apply online

Check your application status

If you have applied for funding from the Council before, you can create a new funding request by logging into the funding portal. If you receive an error message when trying to access the funding portal on a mobile device please use these instructions or contact the Funding Team.

Go to Funding Portal

Eligibility criteria

  • The application is from a legal entity. 
  • The project is Wellington-based and mainly benefits the people of Wellington. 
  • Projects must demonstrate a commitment to inclusivity and diversity. 
  • Projects must meet at least one of the Aho Tini priority areas listed below

Applicants seeking independent artists funding

Must meet the eligibility criteria of the Arts and Culture Fund and;

  • Not receive multi-year funding from Council or other funder
  • Show evidence of a well-established creative practice
  • Show evidence of partnership and collaboration within local creative communities
  • Intend to sustain a creative practice in Wellington or within local mana whenua rohe
  • Show evidence of an established audience for their work, and of taking active steps to maintain and grow their audience

and the proposal does not seek funding for;

  • semi-permanent public art
  • support of tuition fees/levies or other educational course-related costs   

Supporting documentation 

To strengthen your application please provide any relevant supporting documentation for your project as follows: 

  • A detailed budget which could include hours and rates of pay of personnel
  • Support letters from key people in the sector or community which reference the benefits and potential impact of the project
  • Confirmation of participation and availability from key artists/performers/personnel
  • A production timeline for key tasks and dates
  • Marketing or promotional plan including online/social media, posters, flyers, e-newsletters and any distribution networks you might utilise  


Your project must meet at least one of the fund priorities below. 

Aho Tangata/Our people– connected, engaged, inclusive, accessible communities

Our communities are connected by diverse arts and cultural expression

Priority will be given to projects that:

  • Reflect the increasing diversity of our communities, and encourage access, availability and participation in arts and culture.
  • Celebrate ngā toi Māori and te reo Māori with Wellington communities.
  • Enhance local vibrancy for, and with, communities in the central city and neighbourhoods.

Aho Hononga/Partnership with mana whenua and Māori

We honour te Tiriti o Waitangi and the Council's partnership with mana whenua and Māori in the outcomes we deliver.

Priority will be given to projects that:

  • Tell stories of our region and country with mana whenua and Māori.
  • Ensure that ngā toi Māori and te reo Māori are highly visible.
  • Encourage respectful use of tikanga.

Aho Whenua/Our places, spaces and venues - our city is alive

The city is alive with the possibility of art around every corner

Priority will be given to projects that:

  • Improve access to affordable, accessible, and fit-for-purpose venues, places and spaces.
  • Build the presence of ngā toi Māori and te reo Māori and how they are seen, felt and heard in our city.
  • Share Wellington’s and the nation’s stories across our cityscape.
  • Ensure creative thinking and practitioners are involved early in our major infrastructure projects.
  • Support creativity through simple, efficient, enabling processes.

Aho Mahi/Pathways - successful arts and creative sector, and careers

Wellington is an incredible place to create, live, learn and work

Priority will be given to projects that:

  • Work with partners to build capacity, access, availability, and grow the arts and creative sector.
  • Support emerging and growing creative businesses, including from under-represented and marginalised groups.
  • Attract, develop and sustain talent.
  • Make Wellington the best place in Aotearoa for young creatives to live, learn and grow.
  • Empower the capital city to be the home of mana whenua and Māori arts.
  • Support the arts and creative sector to provide local and global leadership in arts, culture and creativity.
  • Support contemporary art and its practice across all art forms. 

Support for independent artists 

Part of the Aho Tini strategy is to give support to non-institutional ‘independent’ artists and groups. 

As we require a legal entity to be the grant recipient, we have partnered with a number of not-for-profit umbrella organisations through which independent artists can apply for this funding, listed below. You may need to include a small percentage in your budget to support administration costs. We can accept applications under the umbrella of any legal entity, so applicants may seek to apply through other organisations they have a relationship with. 

To be considered, independent artists must meet the eligibility criteria listed above.

Umbrella Organisations and Trusts  

For independent theatre and performing artists:
Capital Theatre Productions Trust
Contact: Dawn Sanders

For independent musicians and performing artists:
Creative Capital Arts Trust
Contact: Kim Bailey

For independent musicians, visual artists, writers and performing artists:
Pirate and Queen Limited
Contact: Andrew Laking

For independent toi Māori practitioners working in visual arts, multi-media arts, performing arts, sculptural arts, jewellery, carving, weaving, Tā Moko, music, traditional waka, theatre & literature:
Toi Māori Aotearoa
Contact: Dr Anna-Marie White

For Māori, Pasifika and international Indigenous practitioners and organisations in live and digital performance experience, open to all artforms: 
Kia Mau Festival Limited
Contact: Dolina Wehipeihana

For independent film, visual, live and performance art projects or workshops:
Wellington Independent Arts Trust
Contact: Jan Bieringa

Support for Professional Performing Arts

Performing arts organisations must meet the criteria listed above.   

Priority will be given to:

  • Wellington based practitioners in theatre, dance or multi-arts practice with a strong performance focus.
  • The development of new work intended to be launched in Wellington.
  • Work that has a Wellington city specific focus i.e. tells a Wellington story or is responding to a Wellington city location.
  • Work relating to Iwi connected to the Wellington region

Applications should be submitted to the Arts and Culture Fund via our funding portal and your application should note if you wish to be considered for this specific performing arts focused funding. Performing arts applications from community groups or emerging companies without a strong track record will still be considered for Arts and Culture Fund grants. 

Contact us

Arts Team


Siaun Lintern, Funding Team Leader