Grand Central Art Center has worked over the past few years to move away from a more traditional residency approach—one with set dates, expectations of concrete outcomes, and the limitations of institutional walls. In many residency situations, artists can find themselves restrained by the confines to a specific space, cuffed by an original proposal submitted long ago, or ushered toward filling a mandate set by the institution. As a result, such institutional restrictions often impede rather than support the creative process.

The completion of a successful residency with artist Jules Rochielle that began in 2012 greatly influenced our institutional thinking and strategies as we sought to move the program in a different direction. The pressures of predetermined proposals and timelines were alleviated in favor of ongoing site visits and substantial stays, which allow for greater focus to be placed on research, exploration, openness, and discoveries. GCAC residencies set out on explorations driven by questions, instead ofconcrete expectations, one with no set agenda other than supporting their artistic process. Artist-in-residencies focus on social practice, engaging communities with projects that have relevance through personal connections.

 This is the approach GCAC continues to strive for in our residencies, driven by the belief that true creative process should be fluid and porous, not confined or restricted by limitations and preconceived notions placed upon it from the onset. Process should be allowed to roam freely, allowing for exchange, discovery, and influence to occur organically. To quote recent artist-in-residence, Paul Ramírez Jonas, engaging “to get to know a place rather than escape.” With this institutional philosophy centering and connecting in place, GCAC will continue to experiment with and refine the residency approach, inviting artists to build relationships, understanding, and respect toward undertaking new forms of cultural production in community.

Our sincere thanks to The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts for their generous support over the past few years, helping to make ambitious projects a reality.  Our most recent report to their foundation can be read online by clicking here.

GCAC artist-in-residence program is currently supported in-part by a generous two-year grant from The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts. 

2022 – 2023