Community Connections Artist-in-Residency

The Speed Art Museum is seeking to invite creative individuals interested in participating in our first Community Connections Residency program. This community-based residency is designed to work in collaboration with the residents of Russell and the West End of Louisville. The Community Connections residency is funded by the National Endowment for the Arts, Our Town Grant and will take place in the Russell neighborhood. Residency will be active from February – September 2021.




The Community Connections Residency Program is part of our institutions desire to reach out, amplify, and empower the people by collectively creating a platform for individuals (not limited to visual artists) to share their stories and express perspectives on social and personal topics. Our intention is to co-create a self-sustaining community art program that can be critical, uplifting, progressive, and transformative for the Russell Neighborhood.  

What is Community Connections?

ThCommunity Connections Residency invites applications from creative individuals, art collectives, agents for social change, artist collectives, and interdisciplinary cultural practitioners of all disciplines: architects, designers, crafts, engineers, writers, weavers, poets, performers, musicians, lawyers, filmmakers, videographers, activists, and anyone utilizing creative tools to address the community and social needs of the people. 

An emphasis will be placed on Black community collectives. This includes themes where the focus is on the Russell neighborhood. 

The Community Connections residency will include 5 – 6 public workshops and an 8-week collaborative workshop with a community organization, local group or activist collective. An essential component to the process and conclusion of this residency is to create a collaborative community engaged project that should consider engaging children, adults, elders, race, gender diversity, and those with limited mobility. 

Creating a self-sustaining community project that local individuals can cultivate, integrate, and build from is the ideal goal to attain. The Speed Museum’s role in this endeavor is to provide some of the creative tools to support constructive community development rather than a quick fix or reactionary visual initiatives that lack any semblance of self-empowerment.  


This initiative is designed to place an emphasis on reconsidering what “public art” can be in our public spaces.    

The Russell neighborhood is a predominantly Black community with an increasing number of females, elderly, and young people. Historically, long term disinvestment and racist policies have targeted the Redlined neighborhood for years. The results created an environment with limited social resources and a lack of economic prosperity. Despite these limitations, the Russell community maintains a creative core of gifted visual practitioners and musicians. Today, this neighborhood is leading a revitalization effort in the West End. With nearly $1 billion in current and expected investments, Russell, locally known as Louisville’s Harlem, is experiencing a renaissance. The Speed Art Museum will collaborate with the city and multiple partners to further revitalization efforts in Russell. Our project supports Vision Russell–a collaborative effort, led by the city, to create and implement a dynamic and transformative plan for the Russell neighborhood.  

This year, our focus will be on Black women and their families. Black women have been leading the charge for social justice movements since the beginning but have received little recognition for their works. Often these women are also the caretakers of their families and the nurturers of their community. We encourage you to think of projects that will engage, uplift, heal, support, and/or empower these women.  



Be a U.S citizen or permanent legal resident.

Residency Role & Requirements: 

15 hours spent working in community each week.

This residency has the time commitment equivalent to a community-based part time job. The hours can be a combination of community art-making, attending community-based events, or meeting with community members or leaders. Residents will meewith the Speed’s Community Outreach Manager biweekly. 

Plan and implement 5 – 6 workshops that are open to the public 

The 5 – 6 workshops are additional one-day workshops to engage community members that are not participating in their 8-week Community Connections workshop. These workshops are designed so that more members of the community have access to art and the artist resident. 

Plan and implement an in-depth Community Connections project (8-week Community Project) 

Community Connections programs are community-based projects with 8 weeks of programs that build on a theme, artist, or concept. These workshops can be a source of affirmation, healing, empowerment, and support, or a fun space to connect with community. Projects focus on groups that have been too often left out, overlooked, omitted, or disengaged from mainstream social, political, or environmental decisions. 

Plan, design and execute a final project that can be a collaborative or individual art piece based on the Community Connections Residency experience.   

While the workshops and projects can take any form, all residents are asked to create a final product(s) that can be exhibited in the museum and /or community. The exhibition could be, but isn’t limited to, creative documentation of the programs, video, original artwork or group art pieces. 

Deadline to Apply: December 14, 2020