Call for Proposals: CONNECT Curatorial Residency

For Women, Femme-identifying, and Nonbinary Curators of Color

Deadline: April 12th, 2024, 5 PM CDT

Decisions will be sent by May 17th

The exhibition and residency take place July 29th through August 30th, 2024.

CONNECT is a curatorial residency supporting women, femme-identifying, and nonbinary curators of color. The residency has a reciprocal approach, linking curators to Roots & Culture’s community of artists and audiences, and enriching and deepening the value of relations in the art world.

CONNECT aims to increase curators’ visibility, expand their network of artists and arts professionals to work with, build their audience, and develop credentials, while limiting affordability barriers.

CONNECT is an exhibition-based residency, the exhibition will open August 2nd and run until September 7th. Installation can begin July 29th.

Roots & Culture provides a stipend of $5000. A portion of this funding should be used to pay artists participating in the exhibition — an amount of $200 per artist, up to 10 artists.

Beyond the stipend and artist fees, Roots & Culture offers a shipping budget of $500, budget for printing and signage, PR, and reception costs. We do not provide extra budget for travel or production costs. We acknowledge that we do not provide an enormous budget, though in the DIY spirit of Roots & Culture, we encourage curators to think creatively within the parameters of the gallery’s inventory of equipment and facility and labor resources. We can provide a list of specifications as well as a floor plan, via e-mail.

We are offering one week of paid-for lodging July 29th – August 4th at SIDE BY SIDE, a 500 square-foot one bedroom dwelling that serves as a part-time micro-residency for BIPOC artists, arts laborers, and culture leaders attached to the home of Artist (and R&C Board Member) Jen Delos Reyes at Garbage Hill Farm, an urban farm in Chicago’s McKinley Park neighborhood.

You should check out past CONNECT exhibitions hereherehere, and here.


CONNECT is open to curators working locally as well as nationally.

CONNECT is exhibition-based. Applicants will submit a proposal for a single exhibition that they will be responsible for organizing at the gallery.

To apply:

Send all materials to

Submit a 300-word exhibition proposal, a current CV, 15 images, and/or up to 3 two minute video excerpts of works representative of the proposed show. Please send materials organized into folders, or zip files. Google Drive is a preferable option.

The proposal should reflect a fully formed exhibition with artists and artworks which the curator has already established relationships with. After the acceptance date of the proposal, some modification of exhibition details will be allowed.

Roots & Culture will only accept proposals from individual curators.

Proposals submitted past the deadline may not be considered for the review.


The reciprocal component of the residency includes the expectation for the curator to visit the studios of 10 artists who have worked in Roots & Culture’s other programs (in person or virtually.) These studio visits are meant to connect our community of artists with the curator. There is no expectation for the curator to program these artists in their exhibition.

In addition to connecting the selected curator to Chicago’s up and coming artists, Roots & Culture will also help introduce the resident curator to the city’s network of arts professionals, including members of our Board of Director’s Programming Committee who are available for mentoring, offering feedback on the exhibition, and providing critical engagement