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The Atlas Artist Residency

The Atlas Artist Residency is a one-of-a-kind eight-week art mentorship program, tailored for 10 high school students in the 9th, 10th, and 11th grades from Richmond and its surrounding counties. It's a unique opportunity for young artists, especially those from Richmond Public Schools and BIPOC communities, to work closely with professional artists, local and international, in a nurturing and creative studio environment, providing them the resources to prioritize their creative development.

The 10 residents spend two days a week for 8 weeks over the summer working with each other and two professional artists to explore and expand their creative practice. In addition to the 100+ studio hours the students receive, they will go on field trips to museums and galleries  in Richmond, Washington, DC, and an overnight multi-day trip to Shenandoah National Park, meeting the park’s resident artists, experiencing the wilderness, and creating in nature.

The residency emphasizes using art to address mental health challenges and foster social entrepreneurship. Through curated workshops and interactive sessions, students are equipped with tools to cope with personal and social challenges, promoting their overall well-being and growth.

Each youth artist selected for the program is awarded personal studio space, a program stipend of $1,350, and art materials. They also receive numerous opportunities to expand their portfolios and bolster their CVs for college applications. The program nurtures artistic talent and prepares students for future academic and professional endeavors, ensuring they are well-rounded individuals ready to make meaningful contributions to society.

In addition to the benefits students receive from the program,  The Atlas Artist Residency also fosters significant benefits for the selected two teaching artists. Teaching artists a  3 - 6 month living residency in our fully furnished condo, stipends, and access to a studio space supports their creative endeavors, allowing them to form deep connections with the youth participants and the vast community to contribute to their artistic and personal growth. This collaborative environment enhances the artists' professional development and enriches the community's cultural fabric by bridging generational and experiential gaps through the shared passion for art.

We are excited to announce that the teen artists selected for the 2024 Atlas Artist Residency will undergo the mentorship of Resident Teaching Artists, Xolani Sivunda from Cape Town, South Africa, and Nastassja Swift from Richmond, VA.

The Atlas Artist Residency is supported through partnerships with:


Check out VPM's coverage of our 2023 residency to hear from the participating artists.


Applications are now closed for the 2024 Atlas Artist Residency.
Thank you to everyone who applied!

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