Bay Area Black Artist Studio Fellowship

Extended Application Deadline Monday, May 6, 2024

Root Division is currently seeking applicants for the 2024-245 Bay Area Black Artist Studio Fellowship. Application process includes submitting completed Fellowship Application Form and required materials. Finalists must be available between June 3-13, 2024 for interviews.


In its fifth year, the Bay Area Black Artist Studio Fellowship provides free studio workspace and a monetary stipend to an emerging artist in exchange for being an integral part of Root Division’s Studios Program. In large part, the commitment involves a service project or plan that aligns and enhances Root Division’s mission to empower artists, foster community service, inspire youth, and enrich the Bay Area through engagement in the visual arts. Service projects should be based on one or more of Root Division’s key programs — Youth Education, Adult Education, and/or Exhibitions & Events. (Applicants should review possible projects that align with the organization’s priorities for the coming year below.) Our hope is to provide the fellow with space, resources, and our network so that the Fellow can share their creativity, experience, and service to the community through the organization.

Possible Service Projects or Plans could be to:

  • Develop curriculum and teach free art classes to youth (Explore teaching fellowships)
  • Design and instruct classes and workshops for adults (View current offerings/ format
  • Curate and produce an exhibition and/or related public programming (Explore past projects)
  • Develop and share social justice frameworks for artists, educators, and/or youth
  • Develop media project(s) that compile and share community stories
  • Another community-focused creative endeavor

In exchange for this service contribution and program involvement, the artist will receive:

  • Free studio workspace for 12 months in our Studios Program facility located at 1131 Mission Street, SF. (Value of ~$6,000; 24-hour access workspace including all utilities/WiFi).
  • Artist/ Teaching Stipend of $5,000 (Portions paid quarterly based on project milestones)
  • Meetings with a co-selected mentor in the field
  • Studios Program opportunities including:
    • Access to a network of peers and resources for creative and professional development
    • Exhibiting in Root Division’s galleries/ project space
    • Option to participate in Root Division’s DEI Advisory Committee of Board, Staff, and Studio Artists


Strong candidates…

  • Demonstrate quality and commitment in their art-making and studio practice
  • Have a minimum of one year of experience facilitating projects or programming with groups of youth and/or adults
  • Have a passion for working with and supporting under-resourced and/or marginalized groups
  • Show enthusiasm for working individually and collaboratively to serve the community
  • Are based in the San Francisco Bay Area


  • Have reliable transportation to and plan to make regular use of a studio at our location in SOMA, San Francisco, CA
  • Present a strong proposal/plan for a service commitment that aligns with Root Division’s programs and mission


The awarded fellow will be asked to commit to an average of 16 volunteer hours per month to the organization from July 1, 2024, to June 30, 2025. This includes:

  • Time making artwork in the studio
  • Developing and implementing a year-long project
  • Meeting periodically with a mentor (co-selected by the fellow and staff to align with project needs/ interests)
  • Monthly All Artist Meetings (one Wednesday evening per month: July 2024-June 2025)
  • Attending & supporting two fundraising events: Art Auction (Oct 2024) & Spring event (Apr 2025)


Application Materials

Please complete the Digital Application Form, attaching the below documents:

  1.  Cover Letter (PDF 1 page max): Please introduce yourself. Tell us why you are interested in this fellowship and the Root Division community. What do you hope to gain and how do you hope to contribute?
  2. Artist resume and/or Professional resume. (PDF 1-2 page max)
  3. Examples of your artwork (up to 10 images), with a corresponding image info. (Ideally the images and info are compiled and attached into a single PDF at 10MB max.)
  4. Artist Statement about your artwork (as seen in images submitted).
  5. Project proposal (PDF: 1-2 page max) A strong proposal includes a brief overview of the participants, activities, a basic timeline, and the audience served. (See our suggested template here.)
  6. Support materials/ samples (2 page PDF and/or links): Images and/or text from prior experience that supports capacity to complete the project. This could be student artwork/ lesson plans, course syllabi, a produced workshop,  curated exhibition, etc.

The application process includes submitting completed Fellowship Application Form and required materials. Finalists must be available between June 3-13, 2024 for interviewing with Root Division’s Artist Selection Committee.


We encourage fellowship applicants to learn more about Root Division


Root Division is a visual arts non-profit that provides discounted and free studio space to emerging visual artists in exchange for volunteer service in the community. Our mission is to empower artists, inspire youth, foster community service, and enrich the Bay Area through engagement in the visual arts. At Root Division, we are committed to creating and supporting an inclusive, accessible organization that intentionally brings together diverse groups of artists and audiences. We condemn and do not tolerate racist, ableist, homophobic, transphobic, misogynistic, sexist, or xenophobic attitudes, structures, or behaviors. 

* The Bay Area Black Artist Studio Fellowship (BABASF) is supported in part by a grant from the Redtail Fund of Oregon Community Foundation.

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