Residency Program

The Luminary is excited to announce residents for our 2018 Residency Program, Commoning the Institution.

The year-long session is composed of an assembly of artists, activists, curators, critics, collaboratives, and experimental practitioners oriented towards the commons. For the season, we invited proposals that rethink the relationship between the individual and the institution, asking questions such as: How does an artist, critic, or curator reshape an institution’s practice, its publics, or its politics? How do practices of care and collaboration reshape the institution? How do we work past the individual economies of the art world and advance new conceptions of the commons? And, finally, how do the forms of organizing in or as art institutions model new ways of working, new communities, and new constitutions? Selected participants proposed to rewrite our institutional language, host VR summits on alternative practices, initiate conversations on feminist arts organizing, and imagine prefigurative forums for art's funding, creation, and circulation.

Throughout the year-long exploration, we will convene conversations, exhibitions, publications, and public interventions to offer a series of exercises, footholds, and forward movements towards an arts institution of the commons. In this, the residency is itself multiple, as we all are, and operates within, outside, and, at times, against the singular institution of The Luminary, resisting a celebration of CV’s and instead working towards alternate strategies. This is the official list of participants, but there is a much larger cohort of the commons to be mobilized and matured, including perhaps - you.

See the full list at

As a leading artist-run and artist-centric space, The Luminary supports exceptional ideas and initiatives by providing dedicated time, considered collaborations and a supportive working environment. The program is open to all artists, curators and critics, but uniquely supports the research, development and presentation of work that utilizes innovative forms and unconventional structures such as alternative spaces and economies, publications and writing, archives, collaborations, artist-led projects and experimental institutional practices.

Applications are accepted year-round, but our program focus for 2019 will be announced in late Spring 2018. We encourage applicants to check back then for details about our 2019 program.

To apply, please fill out the online application.

Residency for Artist Parents

Additionally, thanks to the support of the Sustainable Arts Foundation, we offer a dedicated residency for artists, critics and curators with children. While we are always supportive of proposals from artist parents, these select residencies will come with additional financial support, assistance with childcare, and a personalized environment for the unique needs of families.

To apply, please fill out the online application and simply note that you are an artist parent.

Please note there is a non-refundable $25 application fee.
For questions regarding the application process, please contact

See: Residency Program FAQs
See: Select Saint Louis Art Spaces and Projects

Special Residency Session for Black Artists

Throughout 2017, The Luminary is hosting a special residency session supporting the work of 8 leading St. Louis artists. The Luminary will support the group individually and collectively through studio space, visits with critics and curators, participation in exhibitions, consultation, documentation, archiving, writing and more in response to the shifting needs and concerns of the participants. The session is an experiment in direct care and communal collaboration, asking how we as an institution can share not only our resources, but our power to better serve black artists in particular in this critical moment for our city and nation’s history, as well as be interrogated ourselves to learn together towards new institutional forms.

(Image credit: Participating resident Addoley Dzegede, Obama Oloba)

International Exchange

In 2013, The Luminary initiated an international exchange program to create an exchange of opportunities between artists, curators and organizations in St. Louis and another international city. In most cases both residency accommodations and exhibition opportunities will be provided, but each exchange will be unique. This program is currently by invitation only.

2016 BERLIN: Nightmare City and Regina Martinez at Center for Art and Urbanism
2014 FLORENCE: Radical Intention and US English
2013 COPENHAGEN: Heidi Hove and Daniel McGrath


FLOAT is an annual, off-site, short-term gathering that will utilize innovative residency structures to create intensive points of exchange. Each year’s weeklong intensive FLOAT will have a different theme explored in conjunction with a guest artist or curator, and will always involve time spent on a river. Currently inactive.

FLOAT 2015: Tactical Walking Camp [An Imperative to Map]
FLOAT 2014: [Collective] Isolation with Radical Intention

Generous support for the residency program comes from the National Endowment for the Arts, Regional Arts Commission, Bluefield Engineering and The Luminary's members.