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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.

About the Program

Grand Canyon Conservancy's Artist in Residence program hosts individual artists from around the world who wish to engage with Grand Canyon National Park and its people during a six- to eight-week residency at the South Rim in Arizona. The program is designed to support artists with a well-developed body of work that engages contemporary themes, especially those tied to conservation, cultural identity, and community.

 

 

The residency embraces an artist-focused, open-ended model that prioritizes on-site research and exploration in the interest of informing public relationships with Grand Canyon National Park. While community outreach is of core importance to the engagement, most of the artists' time may be spent on-site as they wish. We hope that the work that comes from this freedom will—through future on- and off-site exhibits, publications, and presentations—advance our fundamental connection with Grand Canyon. 

The previous residency program at Grand Canyon National Park ran from 2003 to 2017 on both the South and North Rims. Now, managed by Grand Canyon Conservancy and hosted by Grand Canyon National Park, the Artist in Residence program aims to befit its world-class location by supporting contemporary artists to pursue rigorous research and inquiry at Grand Canyon National Park and contribute to the cultural and aesthetic legacy of this Natural Wonder of the World and its related communities.

Important Dates

2022 Residencies:

September 19 – November 11, 2022, Leah Aegerter

Past Residencies:

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

September 27 – November 5, 2021, Erin Reynolds

February 10 – April 1, 2022, Daniele Genadry

May 23 – July 22, 2022, Elijah Jamal Asani

 

How to Apply

For 2023, GCC seeks contemporary artists from around the world with an enthusiasm for contributing to the cultural legacy of Grand Canyon National Park and its surrounding communities.

Artists from a wide variety of disciplines are encouraged to apply, including:  

  • Social Practice  
  • Land-Based / Site-Specific / Environmental Art  
  • New Media / Video / Sound / Film   
  • 4-D Visual Art (Performance-Art Based)
  • 2- or 3D Visual Art (Photography, Printmaking, Sculpture, Painting, Fiber, Drawing, Collage)  
  • Text-Based (Fiction / Nonfiction / Poetry / Prose)  
  • Inter-disciplinary / multi-disciplinary   
  • Theatre / Playwriting   
  • Dance / Choreography  
  • Music / Songwriting   

 Proposals should include:   

  1. Brief BIO   
  2. Current CV or resume 
  3. Artist Statement (optional)   
  4. Work Samples: 3-5 images, pages, and/or minutes of media that show the depth and breadth of your current creative practice with titles, dates, medium, and descriptions.   
  5. Press / Media   
  6. Residency Plan addressing each of the following outcomes:    
  • Self-guided research and development: What questions will guide your research at Grand Canyon? 
  • Community engagement (through presentations, performances, and/or workshops): Please provide a brief description of 2-3 events you’ll facilitate with the community. Who are the participants? What will you need to deliver each event successfully? (Consider location, duration, staffing needs, and supplies.) 
  • Creative contribution: Beyond documentation of your residency and a visual representation of your experience*, is there any specific piece of work you hope to contribute to Grand Canyon Conservancy and partner archives after your residency? (Please note: this is entirely optional.) 

While in residence, artists are encouraged to work collaboratively with NPS staff and to make use of the many resources 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 possible at the time of residency.  

*As a required part of each residency, an artist must provide: 1) a one-page two-dimensional expression of their on-site experience; and 2) publication-quality, digital representations of the artist’s process in residency.  

Applications will be available online soon!

 

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

The application fee is $45. A limited number of hardship grants are provided to those who cannot manage the application fee.   

Applications are reviewed by a panel of professional artists and curators. Residents are chosen for their demonstrated commitment to creative practice, history of working with the public, clarity of the project proposal, and overall potential for their residency to impact the meaning, history, and people of the Grand Canyon. Applicants are selected without regard to race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, marital status, age, or national origin. Every effort within the capacity of GCC will be made to accommodate artists with disabilities or accessibility needs.   

Three Artists in Residence will be invited to stay at the South Rim of Grand Canyon in 2023. Residents will be provided with fully furnished accommodations in the historic Verkamp's artist residence directly overlooking the canyon, and a base stipend of $1500 for a minimum of six weeks, with an additional $250 for each added week, up to eight weeks ($2,500 maximum). An artist may be in residence from FebruaryMarch, June–July, or SeptemberOctober. Artists are responsible for their supplies, meals, toiletries, and transportation.  

The proposal deadline for 2023 is September 15, 2022.  

Artists will be notified of their acceptance by November 15, 2022.  

*Due to current housing limitations and National Park Service restrictions, GCC can only accept solo artists at the residency. While GCC will do everything in its means to support the presence of collaborators and family members, each artist must take full financial responsibility for the accommodations, travels, and all other associated fees related to visitors during their residency.  

If you have any questions or require support with completing your proposal, please contact Clover Morell, Residency Program Manager, at cmorell@grandcanyon.org.   

RULES & TERMS TO APPLY  

Applicants should be at least 18 years old and demonstrate a track record of professional artistic pursuit. United States citizenship or residency are not required. However, at the time of residency, artists must have all appropriate legal documentation for traveling to the United States for the entire duration of their residency. Artists in Residence at Grand Canyon National Park must abide by the rules and regulations of the National Park Service and follow park-issued guidance when given. Artists must agree to all terms listed in the Call for Entry description and sign a formal contract upon acceptance of the residence stating all terms and conditions of the program. 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.  

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.

Resident Spotlight

Leah Aegerter

Photo of Leah Aegerter
Residency: September 19 to November 11, 2022

Leah Aegerter, from Carbondale, CO, works in object-based sculpture and installation. Her work investigates her relationship to landscape and intimacy with material. Through 3D scanning, she captures 3D models of geological surfaces and carves them out of wood. The sculptures made from these carved textures document her memories, experiences, and emotions of the landscape. Aegerter received a BFA in Sculpture from the Rhode Island School of Design in 2017.

"In 2019, I embarked on a 10-day trek through Grand Canyon with five friends," said Aegerter. "We did a largely off-trail loop from the South Rim to the North Rim and back, through waist-deep snow drifts. That trip has had a lasting effect on my relationship to geology and the ideas and forms that now comprise my artistic practice. Shortly after, I began using my phone to 3D scan rock faces whenever I hiked and building a library of scans – it's a way for me to capture the physicality of the landscape without altering it."

During her residency at Grand Canyon, Aegerter plans to archive the layers of the canyon, hiking throughout the park collecting 3D scans of each layer, cataloging their characteristics, and suspending a moment in their history. In the studio, she’ll use 3D modeling software to split the scans into brick-sized blocks and then output them in plastic on a 3D printer. Molds of the prints will be created out of plaster or rubber, which will then be cast with concrete, clay, or paper.

 

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.