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FIELD/WORK Residency Program Guidelines

Applications for the 2018-2019 FIELD/WORK Residency are now closed.


Ethos & Curriculum Design

The FIELD/WORK Residency program is designed for artists from all disciplines who are at a point in their careers such that they are motivated to commit to six focused months of professional development education and experimentation in order to identify and achieve short-term goals and long-term visions for career growth. Drawing from a series of workshops, readings, consultations, assignments, and individualized support, a highly personalized Artist Plan guides the curriculum's structure. Residents participate in a continuous feedback loop with mentor artists, professionals from the field, and one another to support the evolution of each other’s strategic approach to career development.

FIELD/WORK 2018-2019 Schedule

  • Saturday, October 13 | 10:00am - 4:00pm
    • Retreat #1: Creating Community, Identifying a Destination, and Locating Your Compass + Map
  • Tuesday, October 16 | 6:00 - 8:30pm
    • Artist Case Studies: Business Models (FIELD/WORK Core Curriculum)
  • Tuesday, October 30 | 6:00 - 8:30pm
    • Understanding Philanthropy + Crafting a Winning Proposal (FIELD/WORK Core Curriculum) 
  • Tuesday, November 13 | 6:00 - 8:30pm
    • Sonnenzimmer Studio Visit + Creative Professional Development Strategies
  • Tuesday, December 4 | 6:00 - 8:30pm
    • Artist Case Studies: Project Development (FIELD/WORK Core Curriculum)
  • Tuesday, December 18 | 6:00 - 8:30pm
    • Mock Proposal Feedback Panels
  • Saturday, January 12 | 10:00am - 4:00pm
    • Retreat #2: Failure Immunity + Building a Sustainable Life in the Arts
  • Tuesday, January 22 | 6:00 - 8:30pm
    • Storytelling with a Purpose: Public Relations for Artists (FIELD/WORK Core Curriculum)
  • Tuesday, February 5 | 6 - 8:30pm
    • Connecting with an Audience + Community of Support for Your Practice (FIELD/WORK Core Curriculum)
  • Tuesday, February 12 | 6 - 8:30pm
    • Artist Plan Draft Working Session
  • Tuesday, March 5 | 6:00 - 8:30pm
    • Know Your Rights: A Legal Toolkit for Cultural Producers (FIELD/WORK Core Curriculum) 
  • Saturday, March 23 | 10:00am - 4:00pm
    • Retreat #3: The Odyssey Continues: Artist Plan Feedback + Next Steps
The FIELD/WORK Residency is comprised of a combination of Core Curriculum events and Resident-Only Working Sessions. Six of the program’s 12 sessions constitute the Core Curriculum and will be open to general public registration. These workshops will focus on the core tactical components of any artists’ professional development. Intermingled with these are Resident-Only Working Sessions primarily structured around discussion with guest experts in addition to peer support and knowledge exchange to help further the development of one another’s artist plans.
Additional optional public programming dates will be announced at a later date.

Learning Objectives

  • Develop vital business and creative skills for the world of artists’ professional practice today
  • Create a personalized Artist Plan designed to help residents identify and achieve professional goals
  • Build a supportive community among peers and professionals in the field
  • Receive feedback and practical advice from mentor artists and other innovative thinkers
  • Prepare a suite of professional application materials that can be used for various opportunities
  • Devote time to introspection about the future of one’s professional practice
  • Access educational resources and reading materials on entrepreneurial skills and special topics

Selection Process

FIELD/WORK Residency applications will be evaluated by a jury of Artist Mentors, Guests, and CAC’s Director of Education.

FIELD/WORK Residency 2018-2019 jury:

Carlos Flores, LAUNCH 2016 alum + Education Advisory Group Member
Matthew Nicholas, FIELD/WORK 2017-2018 alum
Udita Upadhyaya, FIELD/WORK 2017-2018 alum 

Artists from all disciplines and points in career growth from emerging to mid-career are encouraged to apply. The unifying factor is the desire to make a big leap forward, the motivation and commitment to do the work, interest in being an active participant in a supportive community, and an enthusiasm for the process.

CAC does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, national origin, color, sex, age, veteran status, or disability.


Tuition is $60 per month, totaling $360 per resident for the entire program.
Selected applicants must sign a contract and provide the first month's tuition by October 1, 2018 in order to participate.


To be considered eligible, applicants must:

  • Reside in the greater Chicago area during the residency (residents of the suburbs and surrrounding municipalities are eligible to participate).
  • NOT be currently enrolled in a degree-granting program or its equivalent.
  • NOT be a current BOLT Residency or HATCH Projects resident.
  • Complete the FIELD/WORK Residency online application (including CV/Resume and work samples) at by September 9, 2018 at 11:59pm.
  • Pay a non-refundable $5 application fee.
  • Be able to attend all meetings except for cases of illness or emergency.

Important Dates for 2018

  • July 24: Application opens on
  • August 27: FIELD/WORK Residency Info Session at CAC from 6:00 - 7:00pm
  • September 9: Application deadline on at 11:59 pm
  • September 21-26: Selected applicants notified via email
  • October 1: Signed contract and tuition deposit due
  • October 13: FIELD/WORK Residency begins

For more Information:

Contact Penny Duff, Director of Education, at