Nature, Environment, Science & Technology (NEST) Studio for the Arts is a network of faculty, students, centers, and campus units at CU Boulder that combine artistic practice and scientific research to explore our common and disparate ways of observing, recording, experimenting, and knowing. A series of cross-campus initiatives allow students to directly engage with faculty mentors and inspire alternate modes of communicating with the larger public. Co-Investigators Erin Espelie (Associate Professor, Department of Cinema Studies and Department of Critical Media Practices), Tara Knight (Associate Professor, Department of Critical Media Practices), and Jorge Perez-Gallego (Scholar in Residence, Department of Astrophysical and Planetary Sciences) welcome proposals to extend this network to include community partners with the 2022 NEST Community Grants.

“Outbreak” by Julie Maren

General Requirements

Generally, successful projects will engage concepts from both the arts and sciences (as broadly defined) in a meaningful way, and result in an outcome that can be presented or exhibited within Colorado.

  • The intersection of arts and sciences can follow multiple models: artists inspired by scientific findings, scientists incorporating artistic strategies into their research, artists and scientists or artist/scientists working across disciplines, or humanities-influenced explorations of empirical methods.
  • Example project outcomes may include: public installations, performances, time-based or moving-image based works, sonic or audio compositions, or any other media format. Digital artworks or written publishing will require an additional local, public component to be articulated in the proposal.
  • Colorado-based artists and scientists are the priority for this grant. If working with multiple collaborators, at least one member must be located within Colorado.
  • Projects must be able to be presented/exhibited free and open to the public within Colorado. CU Boulder campus itself should not be the primary place for presentation, and proposals should indicate potential exhibition spaces where ideally the project would be presented. While not a consideration for acceptance, if projects already have an agreement for presentation spaces, please indicate this in the proposal.
  • The range of funding for projects is $500 – $2,500 total for each project proposal. The requested funding should cover all material, travel, or other expenses within this budget as additional funding is not available. However, if matching funds or existing support is already secured for this project please detail this in the proposal.
  • Proposals will be evaluated based on the overall vision of the project, impact for Colorado communities, and the feasibility for this project to be completed by December 2022—flexibility is possible.
  • Proposals must take into account current campus, county, state, and federal safety guidelines.

Proposal Requirements

Proposals should be a maximum of two pages and include:

  1. A one-page description of the project goals, the outcome(s), a short description of the collaborators (if any), and specific venues/locations where it may be presented if funding is received.
  2. A one-page outline of the project timeline for completion by December 2022, and a general budget breakdown for how funding will be allocated if the proposal is accepted.

Questions should be directed to


  • At least one proposal collaborator must currently live within the state of Colorado.
  • This grant supports the development of new projects, as well as major revisions or new iterations of existing work.
  • Individuals, teams of collaborators, and organizations may apply for this grant.
  • Currently enrolled CU Boulder students are not eligible for this grant, however graduate students can apply for Graduate Summer Fellowships, and undergraduate students can apply for Summer Mini Grants or contact NEST directly with research requests.


Deadline for proposals is February 11, 2022 at 11:59p. Send proposals to with the subject line: NEST Community Grant Application.