February 6, 2018

The Core Program: Critical Studies Fellowships

Museum of Fine Arts, Houston (MFAH)

Andy Campbell (Core Program critic-in-residence) with Amelia Jones. Photo: Core Program.

Critical studies fellowships are offered to highly motivated, exceptional critical writers or curators who have completed their undergraduate or graduate training and are working to develop a sustainable practice. The Core Program offers a unique opportunity for these practitioners to engage with emerging artists in an intensive peer group. Core artists and critical studies fellows participate in a yearlong seminar, the content of which is driven by contemporary concerns, the interests and work of the fellows, and the Core lecture series and visitors. Critical Studies Fellows may apply for support for a curatorial project in their second year.

During the Core term, distinguished artists, critics, curators, and art historians are invited to meet individually with the residents, lead seminars, and deliver public lectures. Recent and upcoming visitors include Charles Gaines, Krista Thompson, Bennett Simpson, Martha Rosler, Kaja Silverman, Stan Douglas, Anne Ellegood, Fred Moten, Emily Jacir, Rit Premnath, Lauren Berlant, Catherine Morris, Byron Kim, and David Hartt.

The residency term is nine months, from September to May, and fellows may apply for a second term. Each spring the program mounts an exhibition of work produced by the artists during the residency, which is accompanied by a publication to which the critical studies residents contribute texts based on their original research. Residents receive a 17,500 USD stipend, 24-hour access to a private studio or office, and borrowing privileges at the Museum’s Hirsch Library and Rice University’s Fondren Library. Because the program is intended to foster participation in an active peer group, including regular seminar meetings, Core fellows must reside in Houston for the duration of the Core term.

How to apply
Applications for the 2018–19 Core term are due April 1, 2018. For instructions and more information, visit

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