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Artist in Residence Guidelines

To apply for an Artist in Residence grant, or for more information, please visit:

Teaching artists not currently listed on the NDCA Artist in Residence Roster, must submit a New Artist Application form. This form and information on other necessary paperwork is available via this link.

The Artist in Residence (AIR) Program provides matching funds for schools and other non-profit organizations to bring artists into North Dakota schools and communities to conduct residencies of three days or longer. The AIR Program is designed to provide students, teachers, and community members with hands-on experiences and personal interactions with working artists. Residencies give students an understanding of quality art and appreciation for cultural traditions.

Deadline Dates

  • April 1 (submitted electronically) (for residencies between July 1 and June 30 of the upcoming school year) 
  • November 1 (submitted electronically) (for residencies between January 1 and June 30 of that school year)

Maximum grant

  • The maximum grant amount is 50% of the artist's negotiated fee and expenses.
  • Grant requests may not exceed $5,000. 
  • A 1:1 match is required.


Applicants must comply with all general North Dakota Council on the Arts guidelines as well as those outlined in the Artist in Residence program.

Any non-profit organization registered with the state of North Dakota as a non-profit (including non-arts organizations) may apply to the AIR program.

Ineligible Activities

  • Costs related to social entertainment and reception expenses. 
  • Costs related to prizes and awards.
  • Costs related to permanent equipment (computers, cameras, scanners, etc.).

Residency Program Guidelines (Residencies may vary in length, but must be a minimum of 3 days and can be up to a full year.)

The goal of all residencies is to give students ages pre-school through grade 12 first-hand experience with quality artists. While each residency is developed to meet the needs of individual applicants, the following guidelines must be achieved:

  1. Student workshops and core group sessions
    - The artist must have at least four (4) student-contact sessions per day (see glossary regarding student contact sessions). At least one core group of students must meet with the artist each day to get an in-depth experience with the art form (see glossary for definition of core group).
    - Classroom size, per pupil, must comply with the Department of Public Instruction Accreditation Manual. The following figures describe the maximum number of pupils per classroom: K-3 (25); 4-8 (30); and 9-12 (30). The Department of Human Services guidelines for pre-school maximum classroom size, per pupil are as follows: age 3 (20) and ages 4-6 (24).
  2. Teacher in-service
    - Residency sponsors and artists are required to host a teacher in-service as part of the residency plan. The in-service is conducted by the artist and could include a hands-on workshop in the artist's discipline, the artist presenting his/her art form through lecture, demonstrations, readings, slides or videos. The goal of the in-service is to help teachers become familiar with concepts the artist will be presenting to students.
  3. Community event and outreach
    - One community event where admission is charged or a free will offering is requested is a required component of the residency plan. This reinforces the fact that arts education is not free and the money generated can be used to fund additional arts education activities.
    - The residency plan must be developed to involve artists, teachers, school administrators, and community members in the project. This provides an opportunity for a community to discover the value of partnerships in arts education.
    - The residency must be promoted within the school/sponsoring organization and the community at large. Good publicity of the residency will result in well-attended community events and stronger support for future arts programs.
  4. Space/Equipment/Materials
    - The contact person is responsible for asking the artist exactly what he/she needs regarding adequate studio space, necessary equipment, and supplies or materials needed during the residency. Usually artists are flexible and can suggest alternatives if you can not grant their first request. Other times, they can bring difficult-to-secure items with them to the residency.
  5. Certified teacher
    - A teacher licensed in North Dakota must remain in the classroom with the artist when the students are present. Teachers are strongly encouraged to participate with the artist during all student sessions.
  6. Residency evaluation
    - A residency or project evaluation component must be an integral part of every residency or project. To begin an evaluation process, isolate distinct elements for evaluation: the core group, teacher in-service, and the community event. Assessments can be done through a variety of techniques ranging from informal to structured (i.e., teacher journals, observation, portfolios, pre- and post-testing). Also, the Council on the Arts recommends the use of written evaluation forms for the teachers and students.
  7. Documentation and final reports
    - The applicant must provide documentation of the residency by including any photographs, videotapes, films, media clippings, in-house publications, etc., with the final report due at the end of the residency. Final reports for the AIR program must be completed and signed by both the artist and applicant at the end of the residency. These reports must be received by the Council on the Arts no later than 30 days after the last day of the residency. Grant funds are disbursed upon submission of a satisfactory final report.

Image of a sample residency table

Artist Selection

  1. Arts in Education Roster
    - The North Dakota Council on the Arts publishes a roster of artists approved by the Council on the Arts to conduct residencies in North Dakota. The roster includes musicians, visual artists, folk artists, dancers, and many other types of performing artists. Applicants are encouraged to choose artists from this pre- approved list.
  2. New Artists
    - Applications may include artists not on the Arts in Education Roster. If your application includes an artist not currently on the roster, the artist and the application will be reviewed concurrently. Each year, new artists are added to the roster from applications during the April and November grant rounds. See the New Artist Application. A new artist application must be sent to the Council on the Arts in the same envelope as the sponsoring organization's Signed Grant Application page.
  3. Rostered artists from other states
    - The Council on the Arts will accept rostered artists from Arts in Education programs in other states to participate in North Dakota residencies. These artists are exempt from the New Artist panel review; but must submit an Artist Application along with the sponsor's application for their first North Dakota residency.

Artist Evaluation 

  • Artists applying to the Arts in Education Roster are evaluated by a panel to ensure that they will meet the needs of North Dakota students. If the artist for your application is approved, he or she will be added to the roster. If an artist is not approved, the Council may suggest the use of an alternative artist or reject the application. However, an artist may be accepted to the roster even though the sponsor's application is rejected. (Click here to view the current roster.)
  • Artist evaluation for the roster consists of two primary components: artistic evaluation and teaching evaluation. Artist evaluation is done by a panel. The Council on the Arts reserves the right to remove any artist from the roster.
  • To remain on the roster, artists must be contracted for a minimum of one residency during a two year period of time. An artist who is removed from the roster is free to reapply as a new artist for a subsequent residency.

Artist's Fee

  • The artist's fee is negotiable between the artist and the applicant. The fee includes honorarium, travel expenses, housing, subsistence, and artist materials. The current state rates for these expenses are listed on the NDCA website. General Information Section.
  • The recommended average honorarium for artists in a one-week residency is $1,000 plus expenses.
  • Applicants contract directly with the artist. It is in the best interest of the applicant and the artist to use a letter of agreement as a binding contract (see page 2.5 for a sample letter of agreement). All costs should be listed in the letter of agreement. The applicant pays the artist upon successful completion of the residency.

Review Process

Each Artist in Residence application is reviewed by a panel that will make recommendations to the council's board for final funding decisions. The following criteria are used by the panel to evaluate residency sites:

  • Clarity of applicant's goals and objectives for the residency, including effective use of the artist.
  • Professional treatment of the artist, including appropriate residency plan and assurances that the artist's need for space, equipment, and materials will be met.
  • Evidence of involving the community-at-large in the residency.
  • Evidence that the residency will not be used in place of on-going arts education programs.
  • Evidence that a thorough written evaluation will be conducted at the end of the residency.

Funding Priorities

  • New applicants.
  • Applicants that include North Dakota artists.
  • Applicants that develop partnerships within their communities.
  • Applicants that generate 25% of the residency cash from the local or regional business community.
  • Applicants that create partnerships with other communities not previously involved in the program.

Repeat Applicants

Repeat applicants will be reviewed competitively and funding will be awarded only to those who:

  • Show evidence that the proposed residency will augment existing arts education and will strengthen its place within the local curriculum
  • Develop partnerships with other communities not previously involved in the program.

Repeat applicants cannot apply for the same artist more than once in three consecutive years. The exception will be for an artist who reaches a different group of children each year.

Award Notice

Notification of awards will be made approximately 45 days after the deadline. Applicants will receive an Award Notice, Contract, Request for Funds form, Final Report form, and Council on the Arts logo slicks.

Grant funds are distributed upon receipt of a satisfactory final report. Grant payments are made according to the General Policy on Requesting Funds.

Credit Line

All publicity materials and programs for supported events must contain the Council on the Arts' logo and the credit line:

"This project is supported in part by a grant from the North Dakota Council on the Arts, which receives funding from the state legislature and the National Endowment for the Arts."


Contact the Arts in Education Director at or (701) 328-7593 with any questions.

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