Chicago Art Department is excited to announce the 2018-19 Core Residency Program Residents. This pilot program represents an ambitious intervention in the field, one that will challenge our community of artists, organizers, cultural producers, and makers to lead studio work, exhibitions, and public programs to tackle topics that matter. Be on the lookout for programs, open studio hours and exhibitions featuring our Core Artists.  Check them out!

Wargames Media Tactical Collective
Steve Ciampaglia + Kerry Richardson + Eric Garcia

Joseph Josue Mora 
Ahmed Ozsever 

Sam Kirk 

Marcela Torres 

Rae Chardonnay 

Tara Betts

Amie Sell

Free Write Arts and Literary 

David Boykin

Why CORE? Answer: We Believe…
Artists can have an impact beyond making
Artists are underrepresented when it comes to civic discourse
In eclectic points of view
Important conversations come from artists with intentions
Timely answers matter


CROSSING BORDERS – While many recognize that Chicago is a city of neighborhoods often divided, this residency will work to bridge those gaps, through the theme of Crossing Borders. How can we support people coming to Pilsen from other parts of the city? How can we support people crossing borders to see new areas of Chicago? What does it mean to cross a border and enter into a new space? We aim for this Core Residency to feature an artist or community organizer whose practice is shaped by exploring the spaces, people and histories of Chicago’s 200+ neighborhoods.

IMMIGRATION – The topic of immigration is more important to explore than ever. We aim to support an artist whose work explores themes and identities around immigration,citizenship, political homes and native land. CAD aims to see this residency generate works and public events that highlight this topic and move the needle for our community.

CONTEMPORARY CONVERSATIONS – At its core, art is a series of conversations, initiated by a creator and continued with an audience. We see dialogue as being critical to artists work as well as larger civic efforts. To this end, we see this Core Residency being driven by an artist, advocate or citizen whose work is centered around conversations with individuals, small groups, and larger public audiences in person or online. We aim for this Core Residency to feature an artist whose practice is focused on public events, online outlets such as podcasting, video publishing, or social media campaigns.

LEARNING ARTIST – CAD’s mission and history is tied to learning. Started as an Intermedia arts lab, this Core Residency aims to continue asking questions around what it means to learn. Beyond seeing this residency generate learning opportunities and growth through studio and public events, the artist will collaborate other CAD artists to lead our annual 10-week program with middle school student from Walsh Elementary (Winter 2019).

GENDER VISIBILITY – In an effort to support gender equality, this residency will support visibility for the Core Resident, to highlight their practice as it relates to their residency goals. How can we support community building for gender equity? How can we support gender identity in general? With this Core Residency we aim to see an artist whose practice is focused on work that addresses work and audience development that highlights gender issues of any kind.

ALAANA – an acronym for Asian, Latino, African, and Native American, this merit-based Core Residency will support an artist of color towards growing their practice inside of the CAD community. Whether investigating someone’s own racial identity or exploring the larger topic as it relates to the diversity that makes up this city and country, this Core Residency is designed to support an artist’s practice towards racial discourse.

JUSTICE – A flawed justice system continues to need attention. This Core Residency is offered to address the work of someone who focuses on detention center and prison reform, justice reform, and highlighting the need for new and better ways to look at justice.

CRITICAL WRITING – There is a lack of coverage and discourse around the arts in Chicago, so this Core Residency will support a writer who write about our work at Chicago Art Department, as well as the larger arts landscape in Chicago. CAD’s online outlets, network, as well as print and partner options will support this residency and aide in promoting written works to the general public.

CAD ALUM – In an effort to further support our Resident Artists, this merit-based residency will push past CAD artists to continue to grow through a new set of goals, and our support to reach them inside of a Core Residency. With this opportunity we aim to see offer more opportunities for our artists, while also investing in deepening the goals and works of Chicago artists.

Core Residency Program Requirements
Monthly Core Program Meetings (participate + present)
Monthly All-CAD Meetings (participate + present)
Core Mentors studio visits to Core Artists
Core Artists studio visits to peers
Public Office Hours held at CAD
Public Event or Program at CAD
Exhibition at CAD (participate or curate)
Content (documentation + online)
Reflection (public + private)
Community Service outside CAD

Why Apply?
Core Artists will be asked to address a core part of their practice, and focus on a new chapter of their work. Any artist ready for this specific challenge is encouraged to apply of the 9 residencies, but applicants may only apply for one (1) residency total.

How Long Are the Residencies?
Each Residency will last for a minimum of 6 months and maximum of 8 months. Core Residencies will begin throughout the late summer 2018, and begin by September 2018 – each will finish by March 2019.

How to Apply to the Core Residency Program?
Check back Spring 2019

How Will Artists Be Chosen?
A Selection Committee will review and finalize selections. This same group of selection committee members will also conduct studio visits with Core Residents between Fall 2018 and Spring 2019.

What is the Application Criteria?
Our selection committee will be looking for (1) a track record of some kind with the topic or profesional history demonstrating the capacity to meet self-directed challenges, (2) a strong set of attainable goals as part of the application, (3) a realistic vision for how the applicant will aim to reach those goals, and (4) the overall quality of the application.

Who is on the Selection Committee?
For 2018-19 the list included: 
Norman Teague – Artist, Educator/CAD Alum
Fo Wilson – Artist, Educator/Columbia College
Georgina Valverde – Artist, Educator/CAD Alum
Cesareo Moreno – Visual Arts Director-Chief Curator/National Museum of Mexican Art
Erika Dudley – Catalyst-Civic Knowledge Project/UChicago
Hilesh Patel  – Deputy Director/Hyde Park Art Center
Patric McCoy – President/Diasporal Rhythms
David Schutter – Artist, Educator/UChicago
Carris Adams – General Manager/CAD, Artist
Mike Nourse – Executive Director/CAD, Director of Education/Hyde Park Art Center

When do Core Artists Receive Funds?
$750 will be awarded at start of residency
$500 will be available for non-CAD program enrollment
$750 will be paid upon completion of the residency and program requirements

Does CAD Offer Non-Themed Residencies?
We also run a separate, partially subsidized Residency Program, which supports a limited number of artists who set their own goals, share space, and propose public programs as they decide. Resident Artists pay a subsidized monthly fee of $275 for 12 months starting in May of each year, and have 24-7 access to CAD facilities, network, and resources. CAD currently works with a maximum of 10 Resident Artists per year.

For questions about this program or the applications, please email CAD General Manager Carris Adams at