Fresh Arts is a Houston-based 501(c)3 organization that champions local artists and creative entreprenuers to succeed in the business of art.

The Space Taking Artist Residency powered by Fresh Arts

The application for the 2022 residency cycle opens October 6, 2021.

DEADLINE TO APPLY: Sunday, November 14, 2021, 11:59 p.m. (CST)

PROJECT STIPEND: $2,500.00 (inclusive of project costs and artist fees)

This program is funded in part by the Texas Commission on the Arts, the City of Houston through Houston Arts Alliance with support from Deal Co.


Fresh Arts, formerly "Spacetaker," has grown from being a space for Houston artists to promote their work into a multifaceted organization dedicated to nurturing an arts ecosystem that positions artists for success. Fresh Arts' residency program, launched in 2021, calls back to its roots with the second iteration of The Space Taking Artist Residency program which proudly serves as a launch pad for artists and collectives to experiment creatively, try new methods of income generation, and engage with new audiences.


Fresh Arts is seeking proposals from Houston-area artists, creatives, collectives and curators for public programs and exhibitions as part of their Space Taking Artist residency program which provides a stipend and resources for artists to "take over" a space for the purposes of developing and executing a creative project and hosting public programs.

For 2022, two selected projects will be selected and awarded eight weeks of access in which to activate a 1,800 sq. foot gallery space, a $2,500 honorarium to offset production costs, and dedicated marketing and project support.

Through this program, Fresh Arts strives to showcase a diverse range of creative programming from underrepresented artists through a six-week space takeover residency program designed to provide artists with a flexible showcase space, marketing and project support, and serve as an income generating opportunity.

Selected projects will have access to a flexible gallery and event space with the purpose of providing a six-week* period of public programming and/or creative showcases. Activations may be through in person and/or virtual experiences, events, exhibitions, showcases, etc. In person programming must adhere to recommended health and safety guidelines in place at the time of their program period. Selected projects will be scheduled during the periods of April-May and July-August 2022.

*Residency period includes six-weeks of public programming plus 1 week for installation and 1 week for breakdown for a period of eight weeks total. Only one selected proposal will be in residence at a time.

In line with its mission to provide professional development opportunities for artists, Fresh Arts will dedicate time and resources to mentoring residency artists on the process of presenting and executing a public program.

Other support and benefits include:

  • 1,800 sq feet gallery space to host public in person and virtual programming and private events (*free or ticketed, at the discretion of the artist)
  • Tailored access to ongoing project consultation with Fresh Arts staff.
  • Dedicated marketing support from Fresh Arts to promote all residency activities through e-blasts, social media features, video interviews, etc.
  • Access to a built-in audience of local and regional visitors to the Sawyer Yards creative campus and Arts District Houston.
  • Artist(s) keep 100% of revenue generated from ticketed events, artwork or merchandise sales, etc.
  • Access to Fresh Arts inventory of items including chairs, tables, pedestals, and projectors.
  • Access to Reuse Warehouse and other community discounts and partnerships.


Winter Street Studios Gallery, 2101 Winter Street, 2nd Floor, Houston, TX 77007 (MAP)

The provided space is a 1,800 sq ft. multi-use gallery and event space with gallery track lighting, skylights, access to unisex restrooms, and nearby kitchenette. Selected proposals will be given a key for 24/7 access to the Gallery during their programming period (eight weeks total including installation and breakdown).

Winter Street Studios is part of the Sawyer Yards creative campus that houses 400+ artists studios and hosts monthly Second Saturday Open Studio events, and located in the heart of Arts District Houston (a state designated cultural district managed by Fresh Arts).


  • Must live within the Greater Houston metro area (within 50 miles)
  • May not be currently enrolled in an art-related degree program.
  • ALL artists participating in proposed activities must meet above eligibility requirements and have an updated (free) profile in Fresh Arts’ Artist Registry (


Curators, creatives, artist teams or collectives of all disciplines (visual art of any kind, dance, performance, literary or multi-disciplinary).

Artists or arts collectives in need of space to present a series of public events (in person or virtual; free or ticketed) which may include but are not limited to:

  • dance or theater presentations or performances,
  • immersive art experiences,
  • film/media screenings,
  • exhibitions/group showcases,
  • readings, artist talks or lectures,
  • workshops, etc.
  • Creative business owners looking to host a short-term pop-up store or market series.


All complete proposals submitted by the deadline will be reviewed by Fresh Arts programming staff and a panel of jurors from the local creative community. We are primarily seeking proposals that reflect Houston’s diversity and feature underrepresented artists/creatives (from any discipline or background), foster creative experimentation and collaboration, and provide income generating opportunities for participating artists.

Proposals should include specific details of how they will activate the space for their 6-week public period through proposed events, activities, etc. including proposed dates, frequency of event/activities, proposed gallery layout, and if applicable, a list all participating artists or collaborators.

Note: Artists will receive an additional two weeks of space access for installation and breakdown for a total of 8-weeks of gallery usage. Only one selected artist proposal will be in residence at a time.

Juried selection will be based on quality of creative work samples, clear project vision, ability to execute proposed activities and activations, interest in community engagement, and program diversity. Two proposals will be selected for 2022.

Additionally, Fresh Arts is looking for residency proposals that best:

  • activate the gallery space in a multidisciplinary showcase,
  • create income/revenue generating opportunities for participating artists (through art sales, ticketed events, etc.),
  • consider the public-facing nature of the residency,
  • provide virtual experiences (live streamed or recorded talks, performances, etc.) to complement the gallery showcase or in person activities.
  • leverage Second Saturday Open Studios at Sawyer Yards* to seek a new public audience.

*On the second Saturday of each month, Sawyer Yards artists at The Silos, Silver Street, Winter Street, Sabine Street, and Summer Street Studios open their studios to the public from 12-5pm.

NOTE: In person programming must adhere to recommended health and safety guidelines in place at the time of their program period.


  • Application deadline: Sunday, November 14, 2021, 11:59PM
  • Artist Notification: Friday, December 10 by 5PM
  • Artist Contracts + Intake Materials: due by December 17
  • Selected projects will be scheduled in two-month periods, Spring (April-May) and Summer (July-August). Only one selected project will be in residence at a time.
  • First stipend payment provided 30 days before install period begins.
  • Artists may use the full residence period for hosting private and public activities in addition to the dates listed below.


Spring 2022 residence period: April - May, 2022

  • Installation: April 1-7
  • Reception: Friday, April 8, 6-9pm
  • Second Saturday activations: April 9 and May 14
  • De-install: May 22-31

Summer 2022 residence period: July - August, 2022

  • Installation: July 1-7
  • Reception: Friday, July 8, 6-9pm
  • Second Saturday activations: July 9 and August 13
  • De-install: August 21-30


If selected, the artist(s) and Fresh Arts agree to the following:

All selected artists are to:

  • Commit to six weeks of gallery activation through a schedule of proposed events/activities (virtual and in person).
  • Adequately pay all participating artists for their time or work using the allotted stipend.
  • Cover all costs associated with the project including: installation, framing, display supplies, paying participating artists, etc. as applicable to the project.
  • Host public events or activations in conjunction with “Second Saturday Open Studio”.
  • Provide Fresh Arts with necessary images, bios, CV, completed surveys and other project-related materials by stated deadlines.
  • Attend four check-in meetings with Fresh Arts to plan and execute project, create/refine relevant materials, and conduct an exit interview.
  • Collaborate with Fresh Arts to promote scheduled activities on social media through recommended posting guidelines (Social Media toolkit provided).
  • Participate in a ½ hour virtual or in person "Artist Talk" and a one-day Instagram takeover with Fresh Arts for promotional efforts.
  • Return the gallery to its original condition following the project period (re-install any removed gallery lighting, remove trash, etc.)
  • Complete a series of surveys tracking economic impact through art or ticket sales, event attendance, and increase in patrons and social media followers (Reporting templates provided).

Fresh Arts agrees to:

  • Provide a key allowing 24-hour access to the 1,800 square foot gallery space during the duration of the residency period.
  • Provide a $2,500 honorarium per selected project (75% provided 4 weeks before the installation period begins and final payment upon return of key and gallery vacancy). 
  • Provide professional photography documentation of one residency event or activity.
  • Assist artists with refining marketing materials (artist bio, artist statement, press release, etc.)
  • Cover the cost of designing all promotional materials including social media graphics and advertisements.
  • Provide signage and marketing postcards.
  • Feature the project and associated events/activities on its website, social media channels, and dedicated email communications.
  • Provide tailored project consultation and ongoing project and marketing support from Fresh Art staff as needed.

Before you apply, please read the Fiscal Sponsorship FAQs and schedule a meeting with the Fiscal Sponsorship Coordinator before the 15th of the month by emailing Applications have a rolling deadline on the 1st of every month. Please check your eligibility via the questions below. Also, note that in order for your application to be reviewed by our committee, you must pay the $100.00 non-refundable application fee. To pay your fee, please visit our payment page.

Currently, fiscal sponsorship applications are reviewed once every month by a special committee, whose recommendations are subject to approval by the Fresh Arts board of directors. Please allow adequate time for the approval process before beginning to raise funds for your project.

(If you already have a budget, mission statement, and project description prepared, the application should take roughly 30-45 minutes.) 

Click here to download a budget template for your application

Fresh Arts