Bemis Center For Contemporary Arts

Artist residency

Current Opportunities



January 23–April 19, 2019
May 22–August 16, 2019
September 18–November 15, 2019

Total Artists Selected: 30 (10 artists per residency session)

Deadline: May 1, 2018
Notifications to all applicants will be made via email on August 15, 2018.


Located in downtown Omaha’s historic Old Market, the Bemis Center's 110,000 square foot facility accommodates a broad range of artistic activity. Selected artists-in-residence enjoy generous sized, private live/work studios complete with kitchen and bathroom. Artists-in-residence have 24-hour access to extensive installation and production spaces and the Okada Sculpture & Ceramics Facility, a 9,000 square foot industrial space used for large-scale sculpture fabrication. This independently driven atmosphere and communal environment encourage creative growth and experimentation to confront new challenges. This is a process-based residency; there is no expectation or promise of an exhibition in our first-floor galleries. Artists who are interested in applying to all 2019 open call opportunities (January–April; May–August; and September–November) will be required to submit a separate application and application fee for each designated session. In the event an artist is selected for more than one session, the artist will select one session to attend.

Founded in 1981, by artists for artists, the Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts provides a diversity of residency opportunities to work across conceptual, material, performative, and social practices. Bemis facilitates the development of material and intellectual interests of its artists-in-residence and is building an alumni program that will further extend ongoing Bemis support. We offer artists-in-residence unmatched technical guidance, access to assistants and interns, an established network of resources, and opportunities to engage in dialogue with Bemis Center communities.

Residency opportunities are open to national and international artists 21+ years of age showing a strong professional working history. A variety of disciplines are accepted including, but not limited to, visual arts, media/new genre, performance, architecture, film/video, literature, interdisciplinary arts, music composition, and choreography.

Bemis residency alumni are allowed to re-apply after a five-year hiatus from the program. Alumni seeking residency must submit a complete application including recent work samples and current resume. Preference may be given to applicants who have not previously attended.

Artists enrolled in an academic program during the time of the residency opportunity are not eligible to apply.

Small collaborative groups are eligible to apply. Please note, if selected, Bemis Center is only able to accommodate two members of a collaborative group to attend the residency and live on-site.

Bemis welcomes internationally based artists to apply. A working knowledge of English is helpful for international artists, as an interpreter will not be provided.

Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts is committed to a policy of nondiscrimination and equal opportunity for all persons regardless of race, sex, color, religion, creed, national origin or ancestry, age, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, and disability. For special needs or questions about accessibility, please contact the Residency Program Manager.

U.S.-based artists-in-residence receive a $1,000 USD monthly stipend and an additional $500 USD travel stipend. Due to the limitations of B2 visas (touring/visiting), international artists-in-residence are eligible to receive reimbursement of qualified expenses, such as airfare, ground transportation, and meals. Bemis Center is not responsible for organizing artist’s travel to Omaha to attend the residency. Additional stipends for studio supplies or materials are not available.

Opportunities and Expectations
Artists are invited to participate in at least one opportunity for public presentation, such as our public Open House / Open Studios. Selected artists must attend a minimum of eight consecutive weeks to receive the award. Artists are not able to defer or reschedule if unable to attend the residency.

A $40 USD non-refundable application fee is due at the time of submitting an application through SlideRoom paid via credit card or by PayPal. Submission of completed applications is only accepted online through Fees related to visa processes or passport acquisition are the responsibility of the awarded artist.

Application Review Process
SlideRoom will confirm receipt of your submitted application. Residency applications are reviewed by a rotating panel comprised of artists and arts professionals, such as curators, academics, and/or critics. The application review process consists of an online review followed by on-site panel meeting. The review process takes 12–14 weeks from the application deadline. Notifications to all applicants will be sent via email after the selection panel has made its final decision.

Apply online at

Deadline: May 1, 2018
Notifications to all applicants will be made via email on August 15, 2018.


  • Your website
  • Current phone number
  • Current email
  • Current ZIP code
  • Artistic Discipline
  • Are you a collaborative?
  • Date of Birth
  • Please provide a brief statement about your creative and intellectual interests and a description of how you anticipate using the time and space, e.g. working on current projects, conducting research, reading, writing, etc., if you are selected for a residency. (500 words max)
  • Based on your interests and residency goals previously mentioned, are there specific resources you may require while in residency necessary to your studio practice? (100 words max)
  • Current Resume: Please include a current resume. If you are a collaborative group, please include a combined resume reflecting previous work history and projects completed as a collaborative. List all collaborative members at the top of the resume. PDF format preferred.
  • Provide two references: Please provide the name, email, phone number, and relationship for each of your references. Letters of recommendation are not required. References will be contacted by Bemis Center during the review panel process.


  • Please provide up to ten media samples of work completed within the past five years, including: Images (up to 5MB each), Video (up to 250MB each), Audio (up to 30MB each), PDFs (up to 10MB each), and/or Models (Sketchfab).
  • Images should be sized no larger than 5MB each, .jpgs or .pdfs are preferred.
  • Each time-based work sample should be up to five minutes in length or less.
  • Text-based media samples should be submitted in .pdf format; 1500 words max or approximately one page in length, (i.e., one page is the equivalent of one media sample). Works-in-progress may be included; all samples must be submitted in English.
  • Do not include external links to media samples or websites. Do not include multiple page .pdfs as one media sample. Do not include trailer video samples.

Open Call Survey
Please answer the following questions for research and statistical purposes.

  • How did you hear about this Bemis Center Residency Program opportunity?
  • What aspect of this residency opportunity inspired you to apply?
  • Age
  • Race
  • Gender
  • What is your country of origin?
  • Please indicate your highest level of education.
  • Would you use your time at Bemis to continue an existing project or create a new project[s]?
  • Are you scheduled to attend other residencies next year?
  • Please include the name of previous artist residencies attended.

Deadline: 11:59pm CST | May 1, 2018

Notifications to all applicants will be made via email on August 15, 2018.

For more information, contact Holly Kranker, Residency Program Manager, at 402.341.7130 x 12 or

Watch this video to learn more about the Bemis Center Residency Program from artists we have supported.

Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts
724 South 12th Street
Omaha, NE 68102
Admission and Parking: FREE
Phone:: 402.341.7130