Founded in 1981, by artists for artists, Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts facilitates the creation, presentation, and understanding of contemporary art through an international residency program, exhibitions, and educational programs. Located in the historic Old Market, Omaha’s arts and culture district, Bemis Center serves a critical role in the presentation and understanding of contemporary art, bridging the community of Omaha to a global discourse surrounding cultural production today.
Bemis Center’s core mission has always been to provide artists from around the world dedicated time, space, and resources to conduct research and to create new work across conceptual, material, performative, and social practices. The independently driven atmosphere and communal environment encourage creative growth, experimentation, confrontation of challenges, and cultivation of new ideas. To date, more than 1,000 artists have participated in the residency program.
Open to any artist who has participated in Bemis Center’s Residency Program or has exhibited at Bemis since the organization’s founding in 1981, the Alumni Program ensures the organization’s ongoing relevance, impact, and connection to its former artists by providing financial resources and unique opportunities and expanding professional networks. Two alumni will be selected to participate in a 4-6 week Alumni Residency to be scheduled during a 2023 residency session; January 18–April 14, May 17–August 11, or September 13–November 10, 2023. U.S.-based artists-in-residence receive a $250 USD weekly stipend, a $750 USD travel stipend, and an additional $2,500 USD unrestricted materials stipend. Due to the limitations of B2 visas (touring/visiting), international artists-in-residence are eligible to receive reimbursement of qualified expenses, such as airfare, ground transportation, and meals. Selected artists are responsible for organizing travel to Omaha to attend the residency. *Please note, participation in the residency program or exhibition program is a requirement to apply. Artists must wait two years to apply after attending the residency program or participating in an exhibition at Bemis to be eligible.
Complete details can be found at bemiscenter.org/apply
Residency Experience Summary
Artists who participated in the Bemis Residency Program or exhibited at Bemis prior to August 2020 are eligible to apply for a 2023 residency.
Residency opportunities are open to national and international artists 21+ years of age showing a strong professional working history. A variety of disciplines are accepted including, but not limited to, visual arts, media/new genre, performance, architecture, film/video, literature, interdisciplinary arts, music composition, and choreography.
Artists enrolled in an academic program during the time of the residency opportunity are not eligible to apply.
Small collaborative groups are eligible to apply. Please note, if selected, Bemis Center is only able to accommodate two members of a collaborative group to attend the residency and live on-site.
Bemis welcomes international artists to apply. Working knowledge of English is helpful as Bemis Center is unable to offer an interpreter.