Artist Residency

Need Advice on Landing the Perfect Artist Residency?

An artist residency is a excellent opportunity in a creative’s vocation to devote focused time on artwork as nicely as to meet new artists. There is a whole lot to contemplate before and for the duration of the application procedure, these as doing work areas, finances, and how to capture the focus of application reviewers.

It is vital to glimpse into the information of every single residency you are taking into consideration, as many versions in size, target, and motivation. There can be a lot to study about residencies just before you start out making use of, so just take some time to browse about the vital things that can assist you come across the great one for you, and listen to from some artists about their personal experiences with residencies and why they continue on to take part a lot more for the duration of their careers.

What to look for in an artist residency


Most residencies past in between a few of months to a number of months, so the time you have to dedicate to 1 can narrow down your look for and range. There are sometimes service fees included (extra on this down below), along with selections to make about your present-day housing. How far you want to travel can be a deciding component as well, as most residencies won’t cover the cost to get to them.

Natalie Baxter, a sculpturist based mostly in upstate New York whose residencies have integrated Wassaic Undertaking, Vermont Studio Heart, Stove Is effective, and Konstepidemin, spoke about the distinction in residencies throughout her 20s vs . now with a spouse and children.

artist residency

Sculpturist Natalie Baxter, who has finished artist residences from Vermont to Tennessee to Sweden, finds for a longer period timeframes to be a lot more helpful for her get the job done now that she has a spouse and children.

Baxter’s to start with residencies were being month-prolonged, as effectively as close to New York Town, in which she labored at the time. The time interval permitted her to check out the new idea she used to work on but also go on with her occupation in the city whilst fiscally remaining in a position to maintain her living condition.

Now that she is married and has a family, Baxter has relished the time with residencies that are a number of months very long somewhat than just a person. In her most new residencies, her loved ones has traveled and put in time in Tennessee and Sweden. In her belief, a residency that is only a single thirty day period in her vocation would not be as valuable. With a extended residency, she is equipped to spread her emphasis across her operate, family, and checking out a new spot.

House and Materials

Choosing on the proper studio area can be significant, dependent on your craft. Distinctive residencies fluctuate in the studio spaces they give, these as size, area, and communal doing the job house. One particular residency may provide unique rooms to do the job in, although a different may well have all the artists functioning in a big house with each other. Most residencies provide housing and accessibility to frequent foods or a kitchen area. Make positive you verify particulars and inquire about what spaces and sources will be readily available, as nicely as if the lodging align with your very best doing the job atmosphere.
Nono Flores, a Georgia-dependent illustrator, and animator who concluded an intercontinental artist residency at Chateau Orquevaux in France, was much more concentrated on discovering the new region and town she discovered herself in. Significantly of her operate was outside the house the studio house she was given, sketching the French landscape, buildings, and other citizens at perform.
Determine with your targets in mind what is the excellent place for you to get the job done in. If you’re performing on a large-scale piece, you’re not going to want a small studio you can not move all around in, and vice versa. But be adaptable a new house might have challenges that can open you up to a lot more inventive answers and exploration in your perform.
It is also critical to know what kind of supplies you can convey and what will be offered to you though you are at a residency. For example, if your work requires a sewing equipment and you do not would like to bring your very own, it is very best to make guaranteed 1 is out there. If you do not involve a substantial place to get the job done, you can make that very clear in your application. Flores was equipped to perform mainly in sketchbooks and with individual supplies, but Baxter, who works greatly in textiles, could not deliver her property studio full of elements to just about every location. Alternatively, Baxter would seek vintage and secondhand textiles and materials to get the job done from, in many cases letting her conclusions impact what she would build.
For your self-control, think about the opportunity to function in new mediums or experiment with what is locally readily available if you’re not ready to convey all the typical provides with you to a residency. Inspiration and materials drawn from the area where by the residency is located have the likely to get your do the job in an remarkable new path. 

Grants, Expenses, and Fellowships

Attending a residency can be high priced, in particular with the time off perform, existing housing, journey, and residency charges. Most residencies do have service fees to join, so it is constantly practical to know the grants and fellowships presented when you use.

Often, anybody who applies for a residency is routinely deemed for any fellowship out there. On acceptance, you listen to whether or not or not you also gained a fellowship. Other residencies may well have fellowships outlined with the software info, and it is up to the applicant to also use to the fellowship.

Some fellowships may possibly involve a specified track record or artistic aim to be eligible. It’s critical to know whether it is proper to use for a fellowship at a residency or not. For the duration of the software, a residency may perhaps check with for more elements or a prepared assertion on how the fellowship can carry on to enable you with your function.

Based on the requirements of the grant or contributor that supports a fellowship, you may perhaps be needed to produce some thing for the residency or do some do the job. In Flores’ case, she wanted to generate something to go away at the rear of at the residency. She sketched massive pictures of the chateau that hosted the residency. Baxter has done a identical factor, as effectively as specified artist talks and open studios at numerous residencies.

Baxter does make a level of being in a posture to do operate like open up studios and speaking with site visitors, as the time with your work can be a particular exploration.

“It’s significant to know when to invite a person into your studio,” she mentioned. “Giving talks can be annoying for another person who has not completed them right before, in particular if your get the job done is own to you.”

Because Flores’ residency was only a number of months, there was a person open studio display at the close for the regional community to watch their do the job.

“I experienced expended as a great deal time hoping to be a element of the town as attainable, so it was good to have acquainted faces come and see what we all experienced been doing work on,” she said.

Vital Takeaways from an Artist Residency

artist residency

An artist residency can supply you time on your own or time with friends that assistance you learn and expand.

Network and Group

All through her earlier residencies, Baxter emphasized that a massive portion of her success in taking part was the networking and friendships she formulated.

“An Artist Residency is wonderful when you’re early on in your profession,” she explained. “They are an prospect to fulfill some others and to network with artists.”

During just one particular residency, Baxter was all over numerous generations of artists and read about everyone’s journey in their respective professions. It was great for her to hear from numerous artists at different details in their lives and how an artist residency can remodel each personal about time.

For Flores, her artist residency proved to be an prospect for long run do the job. She turned close with the director of her residency, even environment up an option to function for them the next summer. The associations she formulated even though at her residency have been still significant to her, and Flores wishes to go on enabling those to expand above time.

Agenda and Composition

One of her favored issues about her residency was the program that Flores set up for just about every day. She would get up, get some espresso, and devote most of her time outdoors sketching in the early morning. In the evenings, the inhabitants would all get for a spouse and children dinner in advance of turning in for the evening.
This regularity in schedules and operate was one of the explanations that the two Flores and Baxter loved their residencies. For the duration of time, every was in a position to create set periods for operating and entirely devote on their own to the artistic method.

“The time allows for a new headspace,” claimed Baxter. “You’re able to take away interruptions and concentrate on your ideas.”

Even with a expanding family members, Baxter notes the great importance of balancing function and family members. She praises her lover, who she credits for generating residencies a element of her occupation a truth.

Reaction to Modern society and Tradition

Need Advice on Landing the Perfect Artist Residency?

For Nono Flores, the abundant, rural French countryside of her artist residency allowed for silent meditation in her work with a lot of natural aspects included.

When applying to residencies, the new idea or route you pitch will considerably guide your function, but quite often, the influence of the new space and folks can remodel your do the job even even more in approaches you might not hope.
This is accurate for the two Flores and Baxter, who let exterior forces like landscape, people today, and materials influence the do the job they needed to do.

Baxter’s use of new products for every single spot would renovate her strategies and form them into closing parts. While however focusing on her recognized craft and strategy, the different possibilities permitted for extra experimentation outdoors her house studio.
Your knowledge in a new space can also affect just how substantially get the job done you get finished. Don’t sense pressured to have the greatest amount of money of productiveness an unique can achieve. An important portion of an artist residency is suffering from a new place and studying.

You can shell out your time mastering a new skill from a further resident or looking through about new tips. Some modern artist residences like the Orange Doorway are even devoted to offering artists downtime to relaxation, recharge and converse about their function with other residents without requires for production!

Residencies are for you to much better your do the job, so as long as you truly feel you are progressing, the techniques you go about the time are not that suitable.

How to Stand Out in Your Artist Residency Software

There are distinctive approaches an artist can stand out when applying to residencies, but across the board, the ideal way is to implement to sites that press your concepts ahead.
When Baxter would use for an artist residency, she commonly had a new concept that she would like to dedicate some time to perform on. Undertaking a residency was a great, established amount of time for her to dive into this new thought. Fleshing out the details of the get the job done that you would like to do in your software can exhibit how closely your thought or get the job done can align with pertinent alternatives.
Being genuine in your software also reveals that you now know about wherever you are applying. Go through purposes closely to know if you are the greatest healthy for a residency. Remaining honest about your ambitions and thoughts can aid those people examining know if you in shape all the requirements, they are hunting for in a resident. Numerous applications need a fee to apply, so it’s ideal not to squander too much time and electricity on purposes and residencies that really do not seem like a fantastic fit.
When prepping your portfolio or do the job to involve with your software, make confident information are higher high-quality. Fantastic shots of function that clearly show the most sum of detail and real-to-daily life shade are in your ideal desire to involve. Darkened or grainy shots won’t show your perform in its most effective mild.
Test deadlines to know when is the ideal time to submit your software. Some residencies could accept programs all year extensive, but others will only open up programs for a brief sum of time. If you are interested in a summer season residency, applications may well need to be submitted up to nine months to a yr in progress. Notice how substantially time you are going to have to have to get your application together right before submissions near.
Residencies can be a excellent career tool for trying new suggestions and shelling out dedicated time with your perform. No matter if you spend a handful of weeks or a handful of months in a new metropolis or the depths of the woods, an artist residency can be a successful experience, enabling for new community, construction, and friends.

To obtain some of the top artist residency systems, see “8 Artist in Residence Plans to Jumpstart your Occupation.”

Have you participated in an artist residency? How did the working experience impact your inventive practice and your vocation? Enable us know in the remarks.

Kendall Shepard

Kendall Shepard

Kendall Shepard is a author and advocate found in Brooklyn, NY. Her crafting on ending mass incarceration can be observed at Her other function has been showcased in Artemis and District, as very well as at the LA Fashion Festival.

Leave a Reply