Mission & Impact

“The contribution of the America-Israel Cultural Foundation to the lives of so many artists is unique. In the most fragile times of our lives as young artists, we found support, understanding, and caring that made a huge difference in our careers.”

– Ohad Naharin, Artistic Director, Batsheva Dance Company

Our Vision

The America-Israel Cultural Foundation funds young Israeli talent by opening necessary doors for young artists to develop their skills in Israel and worldwide. By encouraging creative excellence in today’s youth from all backgrounds and supporting artistic organizations and programs across Israel, AICF unites Israel with the rest of the world through a shared passion for arts and culture.

Our History

Since 1939, AICF has played a leading role in the development of Israel’s arts and culture. Due to its early support for nearly all of Israel’s largest institutions and its reputation for nourishing the finest artists, the name AICF has become synonymous with culture in Israel. With nearly 18,000 artists impacted by our efforts over our 80-year history, the results are nothing short of remarkable:

  • Over $160 million has been disbursed by AICF to benefit Israeli culture since 1939
  • Nearly every notable AICF recipient credits AICF’s recognition as a significant factor in their success
  • AICF alumni are represented globally in nearly every top ballet and modern dance company; museum and gallery; operatic, theatrical, and symphonic stage; and film festival.

Our Impact

AICF strives to impact the way the world embraces Israel by creating the next generation of ambassadors for Israeli culture and putting a spotlight on Israel as a global hub for the arts. Over 400 young artists receive support from AICF each year. To help young artists reach their full potential, AICF:

  • Awards grants to Israeli students of the arts in the disciplines of music, art & design, dance, film & television, and theatre
  • Supplies grants to partner institutions in Israel to help them maintain the highest standard of excellence in arts education
  • Serves as a resource to connect Israeli artists around the world with each other and with appreciative audiences
  • Inspires partner organizations to join our cause and support Israeli artists in their communities

AICF grant recipients receive:

  • World-class Education
  • Active Career Guidance and Mentorship
  • Placement on the Top Global Stages
  • Production and Promotion Assistance
  • International Exposure

AICF is an equal-opportunity funder, nurturing talented young Israelis from all walks of life.

For more information on current opportunities, see Sharett Creative Excellence Grants Program and Aviv Competitions.

Notable AICF Grant Recipients - Individuals and Institutions

AICF’s Grant Recipients Include:

Itzhak Perlman, violin, 1956-1964
Pinchas Zukerman, violin, 1957-1967
Joseph Kalichstein, piano, 1958-1963
Yefim Bronfman, piano, 1973-1977
Miriam Fried, violin, 1956-1968
Gil Shaham, violin, 1980-1983
Sharon Kam, clarinet, 1984-1993
Daniel Barenboim, conducting, 1954
Anat Cohen, Latin music and jazz, 1992-1994
Avishai Cohen, jazz, 1992-2003
Rita Yahan-Farouz, singer, 1985-1986
David Broza, jazz, 1980
Jerusalem Quartet: Alexander Pavlovsky, violin, 1992-1999; Sergei Bresler, violin, 1991-1999; Ori Kam, viola, 1991-1999; Kyril Zlotnikov, cello, 1991-1999
Johnny Gandelsman, violin, 1991-1999
Itamar Zorman, violin, 1999-2009
Roman Rabinovich, piano, 1996-2010
Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, 1943-1999
Haifa Symphony Orchestra, 1953-1996
Rubin Academy, 1963-2000
Culture to the People (Omanut La’am), 1980-1998
Jerusalem Music Centre’s Young Musicians Unit, 1991-2005

Art & Design
Raida Adon, art 2002/3
Menashe Kadishman, painting/sculpture, 1960-1962
Boaz Vaadia, painting/sculpture, 1968-1972
Michal Rovner, 1987-1993
Zigi Ben-Haim, painting, 1967-1971
Joshua Neustein, abroad fellowship
Sigalit Landau, multimedia, 1994-1996
Uri Tzaig, painting/sculpture, 1992-1996
Michal Heiman, photography, 1989-1990
Pavel Wolberg, photography, 1994-1996
Yehudit Sasportas, painting/sculpture, 1994-2000
Israel Museum, 1959-1986
Tel Aviv Museum of Art, 1965-1992
Haifa Museum of Ancient Art, 1953-1974
Bezalel Academy of Art and Design, 1960-2000
Acquisition of Israeli art for various museums, 1987-2005

Ohad Naharin, 1975-1977
Rami Be’er, 1977-1978
Yehudit Arnon, abroad fellowship
Ido Tadmor, 1982-1985
Zvi Gotheiner, 1971-1975
Idan Sharabi, 2000-2006
Batsheva Dance Company, 1960-2000
Bat-Dor Be’er Sheva Dance Studio, 1953-2000
Inbal Dance Theatre, 1965-1987
Kibbutz Dance Company, 1984-2000
Israel Ballet, 1984-1995

Film & Television
Nir Bergman, 1994-1999
Maya Dreifuss, 2003-2006
Eytan Fox, 1990-1991
Tal Granit, 2001-2002
Shlomit Hagoel-Trigger, 1982-1983, 2001-2003
Ido Har, 1999-2002
Tomer Heymann, 1998-2000
Asaf Korman, 2004-2006
Dover Koshashvili, 1995-1997
Shuli Kalderon, 1998-1999
Leora Kamenetzky, 1988-89
Nadav Lapid, 2003-2007
Talya Lavie, 2003-2006
Shmuel Maoz, 1988-1989
Yair Nahshon, 2004-2005
Nitai Netzer, 1996-1997
Tali Shalom Ezer, 2005-2007
Tom Shoval, 2004-2005
David Wallach, 1967-1967
Keren Yedaya, 1996-1998
Moshe Zonder, 1990-1991
The Sam Spiegel Film & Television School, Jerusalem, 1989-2000
Jerusalem Cinemateque, 1989-1994
Tel Aviv Cinemateque, 1989-1993
Young Filmmakers Group, 1995-2003

Hanna Azulai-Hasfari, acting, 1981-1982
Liraz Charhi, 2001-2001
Sasson Gabai, 1970-1971
Netta Garti , acting 2002-2003
Shira Geffen, 1993-1994
Carlos Gharzuzi, theatre 2016-17
Roni Pinkovitz, directing, 1986-1989
Mark Ivanir, acting 1988-1990
Dana Ivgy, 2004-2005

Rotem Keinan, acting 2003-04
Dror Keren, 1986-1987
Nir Levy, 1994-1995
Keren Mor, 1984-1985
Moshe Naor, directing, 1996-1997
Keren Peles, 2003-2004
Rita, 1984-1986
Sandra Sade, 1970-1971
Bat-Chen Sebag, 2005-2005
Yuval Semo, 1997-1999
Tali Sharon, 2003-2004
Oded Teomi, acting, 1958-1959
Itay Tiran, acting, 2000-2002
Sara Von Schwarze, 1990-1993
Anat Waxman, 1982-1984
Cameri Theatre, 1943-1985
Habima National Theatre, 1948-1974
Haifa Municipal Theatre, 1949-1987
Jerusalem Theatre, 1951-1974
Studio Nissan Nativ, 1983-1999

AICF alumni serve as professors and instructors at the most prestigious institutions in the world, including the Jerusalem Academy of Music and Dance, the Buchmann-Mehta School of Music, the Israel School of Music, the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design, The Juilliard School, Boston University, Parsons The New School of Design, Dresden Academy for Early Music, and The Banff Centre.

Our Goals and Benchmarks

Year after year, our staff continues to exceed fundraising expectations and expand our impact. Our current major focus is on Board development, expanding our artist network, and creating a new coalition of sustainable funders of culture.

Since 2008, we have tripled our donor base, doubled our Board membership, and built an international network bringing Israeli culture to hundreds of thousands of people. We have rebuilt our endowment to $5 million to secure funding for Israel in perpetuity. We are continually in dialogue with top fundraising experts in Israel to continue to grow our donor base, and we serve as a resource for those looking to discover new artists in all disciplines. Our programs and goals are reviewed by the leading artists and guiding cultural groups in Israel and the types and number of grants and range of programs are constantly reevaluated and updated.

“A nation’s support of its arts is a matter of both national pride and cultural survival.”

– Theodore Bikel