BCA Studio Residency FAQ

What is the BCA Studio Residency? 

Boston Center for the Arts is a non-profit Visual and Performing Arts Center. We support working artists to create, perform, and exhibit new works; develop new audiences; and connect the arts to community.

In Summer 2021, BCA launched a cross- and multidisciplinary studio residency program to foster and support access, equity and experimentation in the arts and in new art being created in Boston. Our BCA Studio Residency program provides selected artists with work-only studio space in BCA’s Artist Studios Building located at 551 Tremont Street in Boston’s South End, along with access to a roster of programs and professional support geared towards nurturing a vibrant and diverse community of artists in Boston.


Is there a cost associated with the program? 

This year, thanks to generous support from Wagner Foundation, artists selected for the Fall 2024 Studio Residency program will receive fully awarded studio space for a maximum term of 33 months, from September 15, 2024–June 15, 2027. The funding by Wagner Foundation of the 2024 BCA Studio Residency cohort allows us to make real strides in the work of creating greater equity and opportunity to Boston-area artists for whom financial support and artistic community come at a catalytic moment in their practice. Selection of the 2024 BCA Studio Residency cohort of artists will be based on artists’ demonstration of the financial as well as artistic impact of a fully awarded studio on their practice.


What are the program’s benefits to artists?

Artists who are juried into the 2024 BCA Studio Residency cohort will begin the program starting in late Summer/early Fall 2024. They will join 32 studio resident artists already working in the Studios Building. Each artist who is selected for the program will be provided with 24/7 access to an individual, work-only studio space in the BCA Artist Studios Building at 551 Tremont Street in Boston’s South End for a maximum term of three years. Studios range from 140-540 square feet. Studio space includes free Wi-Fi and heat, and reduced rate access to available rehearsal space at BCA, as well as access to a vibrant professional community, opportunities for public visibility for their work, and support for artistic development through participation in a range of programmatic events and activities.



In addition to enjoying 24/7 access to individual studio space and reduced rate access to rehearsal space at BCA, the 2024 BCA Studio Residency cohort will be expected to participate in:

  • Monthly Informal Gatherings to chat, catch up, ask questions etc, with snacks;
  • Studio visits from BCA’s studio residency Fall and Spring Visiting Curators as well as other arts professionals including curators, gallerists and arts writers, made available to Studio Residents on a sign up basis;
  • BCA Studios Open House, coinciding with Mills Gallery opening receptions and other BCA events and promoted by BCA (approx 4 per year);
  • Ongoing “Plus One” private receptions in the Mills Gallery, with invited colleagues from the Boston arts community (approx 4 per year), and,
  • Ongoing Opportunities for Project Room Exhibitions in BCA’s Mills Gallery Project Room, available on an application basis.

The last two opportunities continue beyond the end term of each artist’s studio residency, as BCA Studio Residency Alumni are also invited to participate in our “Plus One” receptions and to apply for Project Room Exhibitions.


What is the philosophy of the selection process?

BCA has adopted an artistic ethos that we apply to all of our residency programs. Our goal is to gather a diverse and inclusive community of artists for the purpose of supporting innovative work across disciplines, connecting artists with peers and resources, and providing a vibrant platform for new art in Boston.

Each application will be evaluated based on artist’s demonstration of:

Experimentation. We support artistic work that displays innovation and openness to new ideas, perspectives and techniques.

Responsiveness. In the process of supporting new and innovative work, we value ideas that are relevant to contemporary interests and conversations.

Community engagement. We encourage an artistic practice that engages meaningfully with the ecosystem where it exists through collaboration and exchange among artists and audiences.

Potential impact. We seek to support artists for whom our involvement has the potential to propel their practice creating a path for growth artistically and professionally.


Who can apply?

We welcome applications from artists at all career stages, income levels, and geographic locations. We primarily seek applications from visual artists (painters, sculptors, installation artists, photographers, video/new media artists, fiber artists, printmakers, etc.). Our studios are not well suited for artists who do not work quietly (nothing is sound-proofed). In addition, the studios have only light ventilation, so an art practice generating strong fumes cannot be accommodated.


How does the selection process work? 

An invited panel of artists and arts professionals will review applications and select artists for the residency cohort who will join the program.

Artists will be selected based on the strength of their application in light of the articulation of Boston Center for the Arts’ core Artistic Ethos, above. Strong consideration will be given to creating a diverse cohort of applicants, with priority for BIPOC artists, taking into account each applicant’s potential contribution to building a community of artists, as well as potential transformative effect of the residency on their individual artistic practice. This includes willingness to participate in public events, interact with the public and fellow artists, and be involved in BCA activities.

We do not accept students currently enrolled in school, however a BA, MA, BFA or MFA is not required.

We do accept collectives, however we ask that you apply by way of a single application.

BCA Studio Residency alumni must wait one year to reapply following their last residency.


How do I apply? 

Applications for the 2024–2025 BCA Studio Residency cohort are now closed.  


I have a full-time job. Can I still be a part of this Residency? 

Yes. We get it. Most Boston artists often have full- or part-time jobs to support their artistic practice. The BCA Studio Residency will require participation in certain events, as noted above, however we will work with artists to ensure a healthy balance between life and art to the extent possible. And do keep in mind that ultimately, you should make sure your schedule supports getting the most out of the residency.


Have another question? Let us know. Email us at visualarts@bostonarts.com.

The 2024–2027 cohort of the BCA Studio Residency program is funding through a generous grant from Wagner Foundation.

Wagner Foundation logo