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Grand Canyon Artist in Residence

Artists have been inspired by Grand Canyon’s majestic views for millennia, going back to the first people who lived on this land. In the late 19th century, painters of the Hudson River School created vibrant scenes that became the impetus for the creation of the National Park Service. Today, the sights and sounds in national parks continue to inspire artists in residency programs across the country.

The next artist to seek inspiration at Grand Canyon National Park is dancer, Erin Reynolds. 

About the Program

The purpose of the Artist in Residence program at Grand Canyon National Park is to inspire a truly diverse group of artists to express their lived experiences of Grand Canyon and to contribute to the cultural and aesthetic legacy of this Natural Wonder and its related communities.

 

 

The Artist in Residence Program grants time and resources to facilitate professional artists’ abilities to pursue enhanced on-site projects at the canyon. This format allows the artist to make substantial contributions to our fundamental understanding of the canyon's landscape through exploration and collaboration for outcomes that will defy traditional concepts of what artistic practices can reveal.

The previous residency program at Grand Canyon National Park ran from 2003 to 2017 on both the South and North Rims. Now, with the support of Grand Canyon Conservancy, the Artist in Residence program is back to bring new perspectives and insights about the canyon and its surrounding communities to light.

 

Important Dates

Upcoming Residencies:

January 31 – April 1, 2022, Winter Artist in Residence

May 23 – July 22, 2022, Summer Artist in Residence

September 12 – November 11, 2022, Fall Artist in Residence

Past Residency Terms:

May 3 – June 14, 2021, Heather L. Johnson 

September 27 – November 5, 2021, Erin Reynolds

 

Application Details

We are seeking professional artists working at a high level in their discipline who can give new insights and focus to Grand Canyon and the surrounding communities as an on-site resident artist at Grand Canyon National Park.

We welcome applicants from a wide variety of artistic disciplines, including visual art (two and three-dimensional, photography, sculpture, painting, textiles, drawing, or collage), installation or land-based art, printmaking, audio (performance or composition), film (documentary, fictional, or art), writing (poetry, fiction, essays, storytelling, or playwriting), indigenous arts, ethnographic fine art, new media, performance art (choreography, dance, or theater arts professionals), social practice, and interdisciplinary arts.

While no specific requirements will be placed on the content or direction of the artists' proposals, applicants must have an idea of direction, topic, and the project they will work on while during their residency when they apply. Projects may evolve and change during their residency as long as the new direction also has relevance to the canyon or its communities and meets all other program requirements and NPS guidelines.

While in residence, artists will be encouraged to work collaboratively with NPS staff and to make use of the many resources NPS will make available to them, including but not limited to: access to park staff and researchers, access to park collections, access to park library, access to trails and backcountry opportunities as is possible at time of residency. 

Artists must, in their application, be able to articulate how their project would contribute to our understanding of Grand Canyon (in its broadest interpretation). Evidence of some preliminary research and understanding of the canyon is expected. Artists are not required to adhere to official park themes. However, if you wish to use them as guidance for your inspiration, you can find them on the park's website.

Sketch in progress by Heather L. Johnson of a juniper tree.

What you need to know:

  • The residency lasts six to eight weeks based on the artist's preference.
  • There are three different date options for 2022: January 31 - April 1, May 23 - July 22, and September 12 - November 11. Artists can apply for all three. Exact arrival and departure days/times will be determined by the resident and GCC.
  • The base stipend is $2,000 for six weeks, with a stipend of $250 for each additional week up to eight weeks total.
  • Housing will be provided to the resident in historic Verkamp's Visitor Center which includes a full kitchen, private bathroom, bedding, and outdoor designated parking space (note: the building is historic and has limited internet and wireless capabilities, is located on the second floor without elevator access, and has space for working but is not equipped with a full studio - an ADA accessible option is available at a resident's request). For a layout of the studio spaces available, click here.
  • Resident artists must complete two public-facing or virtual presentations throughout the residency.
  • There is no exhibition or donation or artwork requirement, however, each artist is asked to contribute a one-page two-dimensional expression of their on-site experience.
  • The Center for Art + Environment is archiving the works that are created during this program, the resident artist is expected to contribute some form of work to the archive.
  • The artist is responsible for providing all art supplies.
  • The artist is responsible for all meals and meal preparation.
  • Each artist is required to provide publication-quality, digital representation of the work done during the residency, as well as later work created as a direct result of the residency.
  • During the residency, artists must abide by all National Park Service regulations and guidance.
  • National Park Residencies differ from other institutions in that there are sometimes longer lead times and limited access throughout the park - applicants are encouraged to be self-sufficient, adaptable, and open to adventure.
  • Partners, spouses, and guests for the duration of the residency will generally not be permitted. Exceptions to this policy will be evaluated on an individual and based on the person’s critical role to the resident and their work.
  • There is a $45 application fee to cover software, processing, and administrative fees. If the application fee presents an economic hardship, please contact us at residency@grandcanyon.org prior to applying to discuss an economic hardship waiver.
Storefront of Verkamp's Visitor Center

Photo of where residents will stay at historic Verkamp's Visitor Center on the rim of Grand Canyon National Park.

View of Verkamp's residence of a couch, large area rug, and fireplace

A view of the residence's living room upstairs at Verkamp's Visitor Center.

 

Application requirements:

  • Artist statement
  • Artist biography
  • Most recent CV/resume
  • Description of the artist work plan
  • Description of public educational programs
  • Contact information for two professional affiliations or references
  • Work samples (minimum of three)

Applicants are judged based on artistic merit, professional experience, process, and potential of their proposed project to further our understanding of Grand Canyon. Artists will be selected by a panel of art professionals. Selections will be made without regard to race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, age, or national origin. Every reasonable effort within the capacity of GCC will be made to accommodate artists with disabilities or accessibility needs. 

If you have any questions about the program, contact us using the button below.

Resident Spotlight

Erin Reynolds

Photo of Erin Reynolds
Residency: September 27, 2021, through November 5, 2021

Erin Reynolds grew up dancing in a small town in rural California. She has an AA in Dance and an AS in Chemistry from Cabrillo College, a BA in Dance and Performance Studies from UC Berkeley, and an MFA in Dance from California State University, Long Beach.

She is a recipient of the Tandy Beal Award, the 2020 CSULB Graduate Dean’s List and Distinguished Achievement in Creative Activity Awards, KAZU’s Emerging Choreographer, and Insight’s Artstreet: Artist to Watch.

Reynolds is currently the co-artistic director of the collaborative dance performance groups E&C and Bare Outlines, the artistic director of Erin Reynolds Performances, and an ongoing collaborator with Heather Barker and the Immersive Design Research Lab. Highlighted works have been shown in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Berlin, and Vienna. She is a lecturer for the Department of Dance at California State University, Long Beach, and researches the intersections between performance, new media, and public space.

“Dance is a format in which every single person already exists and thrives but that is often lost in subtlety; we move more than we speak, yet we often miss the importance of simple movement. While in residence at Grand Canyon National Park I hope to witness and showcase how human movement is integral to peoples relationship to land and imagine a world where people have a better understanding of movement and thereby better control over the outcomes it creates,” said Reynolds.

During her residency, Reynolds created a dance film, "The Sum of One's Parts," that premiered live at McKee Amphitheater at Grand Canyon National Park on Saturday, October 30, 2021, and on GCC's Facebook and YouTube channels.

The film summarizes her experience as a Grand Canyon Artist in Residence and depicts the seemingly vast, endless, unbounded landscape of the canyon in comparison to the vital yet ostensibly minute role of the human body as tender of the land.

watch the film

Meet former Grand Canyon Artist in Residence, Heather L. Johnson.

Heather L. Johnson saw her time as Grand Canyon’s Artist in Residence as an opportunity to broaden her self-awareness by examining intimately how her presence affects parts of the park and how the qualities and features of these environments affect her.

Heather conducted two guided sketch hikes during her residency in which she shared her practice of careful observation and spontaneous drawing. Participants were invited to walk attentively and select a subject to draw using all of their senses, paying attention to how the drawing makes them feel. 

Learn More about her Sketch Hikes

Heather L. Johnson sketches near the rim of the canyon.

Heather L. Johnson sketches near the rim of Grand Canyon.

Support this program

The Artist in Residence Program is made possible because of support and grants from Grand Canyon Conservancy. Donations to this program will help fund future residents and educational programming around Grand Canyon's cultural and aesthetic legacy through art.

By donating, you help connect visitors with artists bringing new perspectives and insights to Grand Canyon and its surrounding communities.