Artist Residency Program

Artist Residency Program Description

The Artist Residency Program at 555 is designed to shine a light on the deeper, more complex positive reality of Detroit, that transcends statistics. That positivity is the part of Detroit that refuses to die, to burn, to close up shop and abandon the cause.  Concerned, conscientious, passionate people are here and the Residency Artists serve as an extension of that local network, uplifting provocative ideas and presenting innovative thought for a Detroit that is redefining itself.  555 Residency Artists come to do what they do best-to create-within the context of a place that has the potential to shift artists’ previously conceived notions about urban life, poverty, racism, equality, and community activism.  We seek Artists who will bring their whole selves to the experience and leave a positive legacy for Detroit through the production of thoughtful, provocative new works and service.

Eligibility: 555 Artist Residency Program is open to all artists and creative individuals, working primarily in the visual arts. Applicants from Detroit, the United States, and abroad are all welcome. 555 Nonprofit Gallery and Studios does not discriminate on the basis of gender, sex, age, race, religion, orientation, education, or national origin.  The organization welcomes applications from collaborative teams.  Accepted artists must be able to speak and understand English.

Selection: Artists are selected by a committee of 555 artists.

Conditions of Residency: Residencies are offered from 2 weeks to 3 months.  As a means to offset the cost of hosting artists through the Residency Program, artists will be asked to pay a Residency hosting fee of $300.00 USD/month for services provided by 555, which will include:

  • 24-hour access to the Artist Residency secured workspace at 555
  • Ongoing use of community meeting space at 555
  • Wireless Internet Service
  • Ongoing community networking assistance, project facilitation.
  • Assistance from 555 in planning/hosting/coordinating Residency Artist Legacy Project* (see description below)
  • Community Introduction upon Residency Artist arrival in order to connect community members to incoming Artists
  • Community Presentation Event, showcasing finished works or works-in-progress prior to Residency completion

Due to the intensity typical of coordinating Residencies that last for less than one month, the Residency Hosting fee will remain at $300.00 USD for any fraction of a month, less than 1 month.  After the first month, the Residency Hosting fee will be assessed at $75.00 USD/week.

Public presentation of any work created during the Residency is expected, including in-process work that is to be completed after the Residency period has ended.

In exchange for an opportunity to engage in Detroit-based artistic research and art production, 555 Nonprofit Gallery and Studios requests that all artists leave a legacy that will benefit the city of Detroit and its communities in the form of a Legacy Project*.  For example, a video artist may conduct a series of weekend workshops for young people interested in videography.  A graphic designer may design a small high impact promotional campaign for a local business.  A public installation artist may help local residents collect and catalogue the stories of elders in the community.  There is really no limit to what can be proposed for the legacy activity, but we request that proposals offer some lasting impact, can be of benefit to those in the community with relatively few resources, and that projects do not revolve around a single “one-off” event.

At this time, the 555 Residency Program does not provide free housing or stipends to artists.  Therefore, you should only apply for this Residency if you are able to afford an extended stay in the city.

Artist Residency Application Process

Please include the following materials for review in our application process:

  • A non-refundable application fee of $50.00 USD
  • Letter of Application explaining in 500 words 1.) the reasons why you wish to participate in the 555 Artist Residency Program, 2.) Proposed Legacy Project, 3.) and the approximate dates/length of time which you will be in Detroit
  • Two letters of recommendation from people connected to your art-making process, including 1.) contact information for each reference, 2.) context and length of time for which he/she has known you, and 3.) reasons why he/she would recommend you, specifically for the Detroit Residency
  • Narrative bio and curriculum vitae indicating your artistic experience and your education
  • 7-10 jpeg (800 x 600 pixels @ 72 dpi) images of your work, video links, and website information (Please include an accompanying list identifying works by number, title, medium, size, and year of completion)

All documents may be emailed to  A confirmation letter will be sent to you upon receipt of materials, along with a notification date.  If you do not receive a confirmation receipt for your application within one week, please contact 555 Nonprofit Gallery and Studios directly via phone at 888.495.ARTS.  Application fee may be paid online via google payment on our website at

Deadlines for application are as follows:

Summer Residency (June -August): Application deadline March 30

Fall Residency (September-November): Application deadline June 30

Winter Residency (December-February): Application deadline September 30

Spring Residency (March-May): Application deadline December 30
Artists will be invited to participate based on strength of work and proposal, fit of artist and proposal with 555 Residency philosophy, and availability of space during the proposed Residency period.