The Irish Government has launched a new  pilot scheme to support artists and creative arts workers. The Basic Income for the Arts pilot scheme will run over a three year period (2022 – 2025) and will be open to eligible artists and creative arts sector workers. The scheme will open for applications on April 12.

The below information will answer the most common questions. Full information about the scheme can be found on the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media’s website→

What is the available funding / payment amount?

Grants to the value of €325 per week will be paid to 2,000 eligible artists and creative arts workers, with payments made on a monthly basis.

All applicants must be:

  • 18 years of age or older;
  • In a position to evidence their creative practice or career in the arts;
  • Based in Republic of Ireland, and;
  • Tax compliant.

As a member of ISACS, do I need to provide proof of my membership in my application?

No. As ISACS operates an inclusive open-door policy, being a member of the network will not be accepted as one piece of evidence of your eligibility as an artist.

Given that, what proof will I need to provide?

Applicants will be asked to evidence their eligibility as an artist or creative arts worker by uploading TWO pieces of evidence. These fall under these two categories:

  1. Proof of income from your work as an artist or a creative arts worker in the last 5 years, and;
  2. Proof of active engagement within your creative field/art form in the last 5 years.

How do I provide Proof of income from my work as an artist or a creative arts worker from the last 5 years?

You will need to provide evidence of ONE of the following:

  • Remuneration which demonstrates payment for your creative work e.g. invoice, Form 11, payslip accompanied by reference from employer as to the artistic nature of the work;
  • Contract for service related to your creative work;
  • Public funding for your creative practice e.g. Arts Council, Screen Ireland, Local Authority etc. or other recognised arts organisation;
  • Grant Award from a recognised arts organisation based in Ireland or abroad;
  • Received Royalties for your work;
  • Commissioned to make work;
  • Sales of work;
  • Revenue approval for Artists’ Tax Exemption;
  • Received Artists’ Job Seekers Allowance;
  • Other proof of income from your creative practice.

How do I provide Proof of active engagement within my creative field from the last 5 years?

Again, you need to provide evidence that you have ONE of the following:

  • Undertaken an artist’s residency (national or international)
  • Had work included in a published collection / curated exhibition / programmed event
  • Represented by a gallery or promoter or agent for your practice / creative arts work
  • Had work produced by a recognised theatre / film / dance company etc.
  • Produced or directed work for an established company or festival
  • Choreographed work performed in a recognised venue
  • Had work reviewed in printed / online press
  • Had work published by a recognised, established publisher, with an ISBN / released a single, ep or album
  • Credit for film or theatre work
  • Curated an exhibition / festival /arts event
  • Received or been shortlisted for an awards by a recognised arts organisation
  • Supported production of artistic work as a creative arts worker in a recognised space / venue
  • Professional references (on letter headed paper) for engagement / employment / work in your creative field
  • A minimum of two unsuccessful grant applications from a recognised arts organisation.
  • Have worked with local arts via Local Authority Arts Office or other community organisation such as local school, community centre, library, local arts group etc.
  • Been employed as a Creative Arts Worker employed by an institution, festival, artistic company / organisation for that work.
  • Website / digital presence for artistic work / being an artist / creative arts worker or portfolio of work (upload sample or link)A relevant qualification or training in the arts
  • Relevant training/continuous professional development in the arts (not restricted to 5 years)
  • Current work in progress from the last 5 years
  • Expenditure on resources for creative practice e.g. rental of a studio space, purchase of equipment etc.

Will the Basic Income for the Arts payments be taxed?

We can confirm that payment under the Basic Income for the Arts Pilot scheme will be treated as means. Each individual applicant’s tax and entitlements situation will be different. These payments will be reckonable income for the purposes of social protection payments and will be treated as earnings from self-employment. Therefore for some schemes, such as Disability Allowance, the income will be taken into account in the income disregard for that scheme.

Applicants are strongly advised to investigate what their own particular tax and social welfare situation may be should they receive payment.

Should I apply for Basic Income for the Arts if I am currently in receipt of Jobseekers Allowance / Artists’ Jobseekers Allowance?

You are entitled to apply to the Basic Income for the Arts scheme if you are already in receipt of Jobseekers Allowance/Artists Jobseekers Allowance.

However, if you are successfully selected to  receive payments from the pilot scheme, you must advise the Department of Social protection of this change in your circumstances.

May I apply for Basic Income for the Arts if I am a PAYE worker?

Those in full-time PAYE employment with organisations funded through The Arts Council, commercial arts organisations or other state-funded arts or cultural organisations are NOT eligible to apply.

Those working in other sectors through economic necessity who can prove they have a creative practice are eligible may apply.

How will the successful applicants be selected?

The Department expects a high volume of applications and it will not be possible to provide funding to all eligible applicants. Selection will be a non-competitive process.

The steps involved will be as follows:

  1. Once all applications to the scheme have been assessed, all eligible applicants will be included for possible selection in the randomised selection process both for the recipient group and the control group.
  2. Eligible applications will be anonymised.
  3. A randomiser software will be used to select participants at random.
  4. The sample will be checked to ensure adequate representation.

How do I apply / register?

Applications may be made through the online application portal here→

The application portal will open at 1pm on Tuesday 12 April and will close at 1pm on Thursday 12 May.

Late applications will not be considered.

Applicants may make only one application to participate. Making multiple applications will disqualify applicants from the scheme.