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Andrew W. Mellon Foundation

Andrew W. Mellon Foundation







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(212) 838-8400

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The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation currently makes grants in four core program areas: Arts and culture, higher learning, humanities in place, and public knowledge. Collaborative planning between the Foundation and its grantee institutions generally precedes awards and is an integral part of grantmaking.Therefore, prospective applicants are asked to send a letter of inquiry that sets forth the need, nature and amount of the request, along with evidence of suitable classification by the Internal Revenue Service.Grant inquiries should be made, by writing or e-mail, to the appropriate program officer and program area, as listed in the Grant Programs and Research section of the website. Three interconnected strategies guide Mellon’s Humanities in Place grantmaking:
Keep and Shape Our Places
Resource projects, initiatives, and infrastructure to better identify, document, create, and care for our places; and support innovative ideas and actions that design a more just present and future landscape—in community with one another and in society.

For people of every age and geography, the opportunity to learn is critical to a healthy society. But just as important as the education itself is the how and where it happens. Our places—natural and built alike—hold the potential to reflect our shared values, actively build community, and make more immediate today’s urgent areas of inquiry. With that potential in mind, we support projects—especially those tied to underacknowledged or marginalized stories—that put our places front and center, while allowing for broad participation, so that we can understand and care for them in service of a more just world.

Evolve our Institutions
Catalyze initiatives and programs that support the evolution and sustainability of institutions (e.g., civic, cultural, educational, or community) focused on advancing social justice through place-based approaches.

While museums, buildings, and landscapes, have long been woven through our cultural fabric, a group of institutions dedicated to their documentation, evaluation, and evolution are only now nascent. Today, whether it brings Indigenous learning into park spaces or builds multi-disciplinary collaborations to restore and preserve historically neglected cultural sites across diverse communities, we support the institutions committed to evolving the field, especially through racial, social, and economic justice lenses.

Promote Greater Engagement and Understanding
Support projects and programs with a place-based focus that promote greater access, interaction, and exchange of stories and experiences toward a fuller appreciation and understanding of a wider variety of our histories, narratives, and expression.

Even when places contain rich cultural value or important historical significance, they aren’t always easy to access or understand, and they often fall short prompting meaningful exchange—the stakes are high when those very places can help tell a fuller story of who we are, what has been erased, and where we might be headed. Mellon believes in the value of place-based humanities and supports creative projects that tap into the power of participatory multi-media, performance, and technology to make places accessible for community members and promote a fuller appreciation of our complex, shared identity.

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