About The Clark Hulings Fund
The Clark Hulings Fund for Visual Artists (CHF) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that equips professional visual artists to be self-sustaining entrepreneurs.
CHF supports visual artists like Clark Hulings, a nationally acclaimed American painter who embarked on his career when he was 40 years old, abandoning a thriving profession as a commercial illustrator to (in his words) teach himself to be a gallery painter. He was fortunate that he could finance this transition himself, with savings from his illustration work, but most artists lack this option.
Hulings believed that artistic development can and should occur continually, and never stopped trying to become a better artist, honing his craft until he was well into his 80s, but he also understood that---no matter how great the talent or strong the discipline---the door to success swings on financial pegs. Career advancement is predicated on an artist's ability to seize and exploit opportunities, especially unanticipated ones, which is why CHF offers exactly this kind of support.
Hulings also understood the challenges of being a representational artist at a time when abstraction reigned. For that reason, CHF supports visual artists regardless of the styles or movements in which they work. Our intent is to help professional working artists thrive economically from the art that they choose to create, and to bring about the kind of comprehensive cultural change that fills our world with a wide variety of art.
Our team of experts applies its extensive knowledge and experience in business strategy, instructional design, programming, journalism, digital reporting, and data science to create professional-grade programming on the business of art. Our educational program was built around the way adults learn, and offers all artists with Internet access an educationally sound balance of topics, formats, venues, and contributors. This includes our:
- Podcast courses
- Expert columns and advice
- Visual arts events calendar
- Webinars and panel discussions
Find out more about how the program was designed and developed in this Q&A with CHF's educational director.
Targeted Training and Financial Assistance
Through our Business Accelerator Program, we offer direct customized training to visual artists. Those artists who are chosen to be Accelerator Fellows receive a range of benefits, including free admission to our rigorous educational program, access to business and art-industry experts, and eligibility for direct funding. Since November 2013, we have awarded grants to 10 artists, and we will be selecting up to ten additional artists from among the Accelerator class of 2017 to receive a total of $10,000 in direct grants (no fiscal sponsorship required). Our grants cover targeted expenses related to specific projects that are designed to advance an artist's career.
CHF provides a clearinghouse for mentorship and community in a non-competitive setting. We team up with arts organizations to create an expanded platform for education through joint distribution opportunities, and share our highly developed programming with their constituents. We also provide strategically managed PR channels for otherwise-sequestered experts who possess critical competencies that address the needs of artists and help us fulfill our mission.