Iowa Creative Incubator // Artist Fellowship + Business Guide

Iowa Creative Incubator // Artist Fellowship + Business Guide Mainframe Studios | 09/24/2020

Mainframe Studios is pleased to announce the launch of The Iowa Creative Incubator - a pilot program with a mission to forge pathways between artists and businesses to build more collaborative, more vibrant, and more connected communities.

The focus of this 4-month fellowship will be highly personalized professional development for up to five artists who are rooted in social engagement. The program will also develop a best practices guide for businesses looking to increase their engagement in the arts.

Artists looking to expand their practice to include commercial/public projects are encouraged to apply here. Fellows will work with composer//entrepreneur Beau Kenyon, Siobhan Spain, and a team of advisors to navigate the process of broadening their career by partnering with businesses and organizations on projects that strengthen our community.

Artists who identify as Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) are especially encouraged to apply. Application deadline is Saturday, October 10, 2020.


  • Guide the process of each Artist Fellow's unique vision for producing a new commercial or public project
  • Connect Artist Fellows with businesses and organizations to realize their project
  • Empower Artist Fellows to have confidence in their artistic practice and value their role in establishing a diverse creative economy and a more connected community
  • Work with businesses and organizations looking to increase their engagement with the arts and increase their understanding of best practices for doing so
  • Prioritize civic engagement projects that address social inequities


Artist Fellows receive up to 30 hours of customized professional development that transforms Greater Des Moines into a learning lab for artists, who will work with local organizations to envision, create, and present a new artwork. Artists will be invited to think creatively about space, partnership, and outcome while remaining grounded in their artistic values and voice. 

  • Artists will engage in small group workshops, individual coaching sessions, and peer feedback
  • Artists will connect to one or more organizations with whom they will scope a creative project
  • Artists will collaboratively create  a plan and budget for bringing their creative vision to fruition
  • Artists will develop a business approach that is personal and aligned with their creative practice
  • This is the 1st cycle of a 3-cycle Pilot, running from October - February

Des Moines Area Artists are encouraged to submit applications and supporting materials by Saturday, October 10, 2020. Up to five artists will be selected for this first round. Artist Teams will also be considered. 


CLICK HERE to begin your application / EXTENDED DEADLINE Oct 17th, 2020

→ 3 Information Sessions are available for applicants to learn more.

→ Information Sessions: Friday, September 25 @ 12pm & Tuesday, September 29 @ 7pm, & Thursday, October 8th @ 12pm / CLICK HERE to register.

The Iowa Creative Incubator is presented by Mainframe Studios and composer/consultant Beau Kenyon, with support from Iowa Arts Council.