Through generous funding by the National Endowment for the Arts, the RISD Museum is pleased to offer Artist Fellowships for 2016–2017. Two selected artists receive stipends of $10,000 each, professional development support, and the opportunity to work closely with the Museum’s collections and staff members. The RISD Museum was founded with a core mission of inspiring artists and designers. By supporting the local creative community, the Museum and its audiences are fueled by the imagination and innovation of the artists and designers it serves.

Artist fellows have the opportunity to explore new ideas and ways of working. They investigate Museum collections related to their proposed areas of interest, with support and mentorship from curatorial staff, conservators, and educators, and engage in research that benefits their personal practice and delves deeply into ideas, materials, and processes.

To expand their knowledge and art-making skills, fellows have access to a range of resources at RISD, including support from Museum staff and access to RISD faculty, technicians, and libraries. Fellows may audit select RISD Graduate Studies courses and receive full scholarships to select RISD Continuing Education courses. In collaboration with Museum staff, fellows share their work with the public through talks, demonstrations, performances, publications, or other formats.

Fellowship Goals

Enable artist fellows to carry out object-based research, to learn new skills, and to create new work.
Foster public interest in dynamic creative practice by connecting with artists and sharing their work and research with the Museum’s audiences.
Offer professional development opportunities, including workshops in financial management, writing, documentation, and presentation.
Create links between the RISD Museum’s collection and current practices in art and design.

In addition to a $10,000 stipend, each Artist Fellow will receive:

  • Access to research resources including the RISD Museum collections and Fleet Library
  • Mentorship from RISD Museum and College faculty and staff
  • Ability to audit select RISD Graduate Studies courses
  • Artist-related professional development training in topics including writing, documentation, presentation, and financial literacy
  • Full scholarships to RISD’s Continuing Education courses (selected in consultation with Museum staff)
  • Opportunities to share their creative process with RISD Museum audiences
  • Opportunity to help shape the Museum’s approach to supporting artists in the future

Selection Criteria

  • Artists must be local, meaning Providence is their closest big city. They must have resided in this area for at least one year prior to the application deadline.
  • Artists and designers working in any medium are eligible to apply.
  • Artists should be at or approaching a critical shift, transition, or change in their career. This could mean an emerging artist establishing their practice or an established artist at a significant moment of creative or professional development.
  • Artists should be interested in infusing their creative practice with research, and in exploring objects from varied times and cultures.
  • Artists may not be enrolled in a degree-seeking program, either part-time or full-time, at an institution of higher learning at the time of the application deadline or during the fellowship year. Because RISD faculty and staff already have access to many of the resources provided by this fellowship, they are not eligible for this program.

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