People Supporting the Arts

Arts Foundation


President: P.K. VanderBeke, CD ‘96
Vice President/Treasurer: Robert Johnson, CD ‘87
Secretary: Ann Murray, CD ‘02


Operating as a charitable adjunct to The Cliff Dwellers private club, The Cliff Dwellers Arts Foundation’s ongoing mission is to support the arts. This is accomplished through its providing funds in the form of grants to arts-oriented organizations and individuals, presenting events at the club such as concerts, performances, and films, and sponsoring an annual music competition. Grant recipients are chosen by the full Board from qualified applications received by a set deadline each spring and fall; applications are available on-line and members are encouraged to invite their favorite groups to apply.

Funds are provided through voluntary contributions from club members and are distributed biannually. Contributions are accepted at any time during the year. Checks made out to The Cliff Dwellers Arts Foundation for any amount, as well as inquiries, should be sent directly to the Foundation at the club’s address. All such contributions are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by current revenue laws. Specific information regarding past grants and distributions is available to club members.

In keeping with the founding goals of The Cliff Dwellers to celebrate and support the arts in Chicago, The Cliff Dwellers Arts Foundation was created and is funded solely through the generosity and support of our members and accomplishes those goals in many very tangible ways. This past year the foundation awarded grants to a wide-ranging group of recipients including:

Resonant Bodies Festival for the inaugural Chicago edition of their acclaimed new-vocal-music festival

High Concept Laboratories in support of their Sound As Sight field recording project for the blind developed by Chicago artist Andy Slater.

Homeroom Chicago for a contemporary classical and jazz/experimental concert series entitled “Physics for Listeners”.

Interrobang Theatre project for their 2017-2018 season.

The Cabinet of Curiosity Events in support of “Rites of Passage/Bowls of Fire” an outdoor fire-based show being developed to perform throughout Chicago.

Links Hall for “Eclipsing”, a five-day performance festival curated by Amina Ross including screenings of videos by performance artists and community workshop series focused on healing practices.

Midsummer Flight for their Summer 2018 Shakespeare in Chicago parks production of “The Two Gentleman of Verona”.

We also continue to offer grant recipients the opportunity to present their work at the club, hosting several events in 2017. For 2018, we are planning our first benefit featuring several grant recipients coming together in one evening curated by a Chicago artist. Additionally, the Cliff Dwellers Music Competition, re-launched in April 2014 featuring a specially commissioned competition pieces by Chicago based composers and awarding over two thousand dollars to local contest winners will be presented in Feb. of 2018 featuring string quartets playing a new work by Andy Gillespie. The Cliff Dwellers Arts Foundation is proud to work in tandem with our membership to support the artists and arts organizations in Chicago whose work enlivens and enriches our lives.

To make donations, copy the card below or, if you prefer, download this file:  Arts Foundation Donation Card


For information on receiving grants to be distributed by the Foundation, please see the guidelines document that is accessed via this link:

To apply for a grant from The Cliff Dwellers Arts Foundation, please use the application form that is available by clicking on this link:
CD-Arts Foundation Application

Deadlines for grant applications in 2018 are March 30th and September 28th.

Email inquiries: