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Fellowship to a Rhode Island Designer or Artist for Career Development and Research Opportunities


Geographic Focus

USA: Rhode Island: Providence metropolitan area

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Research Residency for Artists

Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) Museum

Agency: Foundation

GrantWatch ID #173479

Grant Description

Previous Page Version

Fellowship of $10,000 to a Rhode Island designer or artist in eligible locations to receive professional development support and conduct research related to art in the museum's collection. The program is intended to provide artists with resources for artistic research and creative interests. Applicants must reside in the Providence area.

The research residency is intended to provide the artist with resources to deepen their creative interests and their relationship to artistic research. Through providing meaningful access to the Museum’s collections and staff, this hope is that this opportunity will:

  • Inspire growth and innovation in the artist’s practice and research;
  • Activate the Museum’s collections in new and artist-led ways;
  • Build the artist’s insight into museum practices and institutional settings;
  • Foster dialogue between the artist and museum staff that will shape the museum’s approach to supporting artists and designers in the future.

RISD envisions that the resident artist will carry out work which may include, but is not limited to:

  • Investigating Museum collections, with support and mentorship from curatorial staff, conservators, and educators;
  • Conducting research that benefits their personal practice and delves deeply into ideas, materials, and processes;
  • Engaging with museum practices through open invitations to participate in staff meetings, projects, and activities that help build a diverse and inclusive creative community.

Additionally, the artist may choose, but is not required, to create artwork or public programming as part of their research residency.


Research can take many forms and be experimental in nature. As such, the goals and expectations of the Research Residency are loosely defined by design; previous years of the residency have proven that an open-ended structure can create opportunities for organic shifts in perspectives between the artist, museum staff, and audiences. The hope is that the artist can feel empowered to shape the focus and trajectory of their experience. 

Logistically, RISD envisions that the resident artist will:

  • Allot approximately 16 hours per month of residency-related work. Time dedicated to the residency can fluctuate throughout the year depending on the artist’s external work and commitments; schedules and timelines can be developed in collaboration with museum staff.
  • Spend a significant amount of those hours in-person at the RISD Museum building, unless accessibility or mobility needs require otherwise.

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Additional Eligibility Criteria:

- Applicants must be local, residing in the Providence metropolitan area for at least one year prior to the application deadline.
- Artists and designers working in any medium are eligible to apply.
- Applicants must be 18+ years of age.
- Applicants should be able to articulate a critical shift, transition, and/or change in their practice. This could mean an emerging artist establishing their practice or an established artist at a significant moment of creative or professional development.
- Applicants should be interested in infusing their creative practice with research, and in exploring objects from varied times and cultures.
- Applicants 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 year of the residency. Because RISD employees already have access to many of the resources provided by this residency, they are not eligible for this program. RISD CE Certificate Students are eligible to apply.

Pre-proposal Conference:

Optional office hours available
- Thursday, November 10, 3-7 pm;
- Sunday, November 13, 12-3 pm;
- Wednesday, November 16, 12-3 pm.

Applicants may sign up for 20 min. time slots to ask questions of museum staff before submitting their application.

Sign up for a time slot at:

Pre-Application Information:

Important Dates
- Application period opens: November 1, 2022
- Application deadline: November 30, 2022, 11:59 pm
- Interviews for finalists: Weeks of December 12 and 19, 2022
- Notifications: Early January 2023
- Start date: January 30, 2023
- End date: December 31, 2023

Applicants are invited to respond to Questions 1, 2, & 3 either written or orally via audio file. These responses should be 1 1/2 to 3 minutes or less in length. Selection committee members will listen only to the maximum time limit.

Additional Funding Information:

Number of Grants:


Estimated Size of Grant:

In addition to a $10,000 stipend, the artist will receive:
- Access to research resources, including the RISD Museum Collections and RISD Fleet Library;
- Opportunities for mentorship from RISD Museum staff;
- Ability to attend select RISD Continuing Education courses;
- Artist-related professional development; and
- Opportunities to share their creative process with RISD Museum audiences.
- Additionally, a modest project budget is available should the artist choose to create a project, artwork, or public program as part of their research.

Term of Contract:

The research residency will run from January–December 2023.

Contact Information:

Apply Online:

For further questions or inquiries, please contact

RISD Museum
20 N Main St
Providence, RI 02903

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