Residency Program

Residency Program

The residency program at the Prairie Center of the Arts is open to artists practicing in a wide range of media. A diversity of artistic directions and interests is what keeps the Prairie Center vibrant and viable. The Prairie Center celebrates geographic diversity as well, having hosted residents from six countries and from almost every corner of the United States. About 200 artists have been awarded a residency since 2003.  Eleven artists were awarded residencies during 2017 and to date in 2018. We are now able, once again, to offer residencies to artists from outside the Peoria area.

Interested artists are invited to submit an application, letter of intent, resume, a portfolio of work, and references, which are then reviewed by a peer jury. Artists accepted to serve as residents receive free studio space and access to the Prairie Center
s facilities close to downtown Peoria from 6:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. Residencies vary in length between one to two months.  Artists in residence are asked to commit to using their studios a minimum of thirty hours per week. Opportunities exist for residents to exhibit their work to the local community, often through the popular First Friday program.

Residents at the Prairie Center live independently, provide and prepare their own meals, and require their own transportation. While local artists are responsible for their own living arrangements, housing is available to those coming from out of town. Residents housed at the Germantown Hills compound receive a small monetary amount for incidental expenses. All residents are responsible for their transportation to and from the residency.

Accommodations for out-of-town residents are located in rural Germantown Hills approximately 20 minutes from the Prairie Center. Residents must have access to an automobile; some choose to carpool or rent a car. Ample parking is available at the Prairie Center.

The Prairie Center residential compound in Germantown Hills consists of two houses, furnished with private bedrooms and shared kitchen, bathroom and living space. Four artists at a time can be accommodated. The housing is located approximately one half mile from Germantown Crossing that includes a gas station, convenience stores, and several restaurants. East Peoria is within a mile of the studios and has a great shopping and dining district.

Application and Application Process

The residency program is open to visual artists….artists who envision and change the world through their creative intellect.  We accept a broad range of proposals, and encourage all those interested to apply.

To become a resident of the Prairie Center of the Arts, artists submit an application, a letter of intent, resume, a portfolio of work, and two letters of recommendation. Applications are considered through a juried review process. An application fee of $15 is required, and can be paid online via PayPal or mailed to the Prairie Center of the Arts, 1506 S.W. Washington Street, Peoria, IL 61602.

Please note: The Prairie Center is unable to accommodate artists working with oil paints, toxic materials, certain power tools and other hazardous materials. If you think your work material might fall within this category, please contact us before applying.

The Prairie Center of the Arts is issuing an open call for applications for its upcoming short-term residency sessions.
Summer Session - May 7 to August 31, 2018 - Application deadline: March 15, 2018
Fall Session - September 3 to November 30, 2018 - Application deadline: May 15, 2018

Summer and Fall Session Overview
The Prairie Center of the Arts is offering four to six short-term residencies for artists in each of two sessions (summer and fall) for periods lasting between one month to two months.  (Longer time periods may be considered for projects that are unusually compelling.)

  • Artists receive studio space at the Prairie Center and access to studio equipment (for those experienced in their use).
  • Artists in residence are expected to spend at least thirty hours per week at work in the studio during operational hours - 6:00am to 10:00pm.
  • Each resident artist is asked to give an artist talk or demonstration during the course of his or her residency (date and time to be mutually convenient).
  • Each resident artist is also eligible for inclusion in the Prairie Center of the Arts Annual Alumni Art Show upon completion of the residency.
  • Housing is provided for four artists at a time in the Prairie Center’s Germantown Hills residential compound.
  • Housing is located approximately 20 minutes from the studios.
  • Artists must have a car in order to travel between the compound and studio.
  • Artists housed in Prairie Center accommodations receive $25/week for incidental expenses.
  • Residents should plan to arrive on a Monday before 3pm and depart on a Friday by 3pm.
  • Prairie Center alumni are eligible to reapply for residency after two years.
Please contact Michele with questions.

Prairie Center A.I.R.'s

Prairie Center of the Arts provides time, space, and resources. The artists' job is to show up and make work.

2017-2018 Artists
  • Alexander Martin, Print Shop and Gallery Director
  • Barbie Kuester Perry, Drawing, Mixed Media, Printmaking
  • Elizabeth Klise, Poet, Mixed Media
  • Allison Walsh, Painting, Video
  • Dan Ossandon, Printmaking, Design
  • Michael Jermaine Adams, Painting
  • Dana Baldwin, Fiber Arts
  • Jessica Ott, Mixed Media, Sculpture
  • Anna Fredrick, Painting, Printmaking
  • Michael Gilbert, Printmaking & Book Arts
  • Chelsie Tamms, Letterpress
  • Megan Kathol Bersett, Mixed Media, Printmaking
  • Elizabeth Majerus, Poetry
  • Noah Otten, Installation, Fabric/Textiles, Printmaking
  • Dan Nagel, Printmaking, Screen Printing
  • Kayla Phillips, Screen Printing
  • Mona Gazala, Installation, Social Practice
  • Molly Markow, Screen Printing
  • Felicia Cannon, Screen Printing
  • Jacob Guzan, Printmaking
  • Tessa Martinez, Sculpture, Mixed Media

Resident Artist working at Prairie Center of the Arts
  • Susan Czechowski, Screen Printing





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