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Deaf Artist Residency Funded for Second Year

The National Endowment for the Arts has awarded the Anderson Center for Interdisciplinary Studies two grants for 2016 - one of which will support the second year of the Deaf Artist Residency.

The Deaf Artist Residency program was piloted by the Anderson Center in 2014. A full month session was devoted to hosting five artists and scholars whose native or adoptive language is American Sign Language (ASL). The first cohort of artists included a graphic novelist, two poets, a scholar and a short story writer.

“It’s such a foreign experience for me," said 2014 scholar-in-residence Rachel Mazique. "To be among and live with fellow deaf artists who know what I’m talking about, and to not have to explain or to encounter puzzlement and questions as to whether deaf literature exists or what it is.”

After the success of the pilot program there was no question that it should be continued - but funding remained a question mark. “We are thrilled to be able to host the second month-long residency for Deaf artists" said the Center director Christopher Burawa upon announcements of the funds. "This program was originally conceived by Cynthia Weitzel, a Deaf visual artist and Anderson Center year-round studio artist, and she will again be leading the review process and overseeing the outreach activities and public presentation at the end of the residency.”

The 2016 program will run the entire month of June and applications are now being accepted. Five residencies will be awarded -  two for visual artists (printmaking, painting, sculpture, fiber, ceramics, photography, pottery, etc.) and three for any other creative or scholarly discipline (fiction, non-fiction, poetry, dance, drama, etc.) Each accepted artist will be provided room, board and private studio or workspace in a Deaf-friendly environment for two to four weeks. Application deadline is February 15.

Questions about this year's program may be directed to Anderson Center’s resident Deaf artist, Cynthia Weitzel at

Find more information on applying and the residency program here.

Anderson Center for Interdisciplinary Studies

The largest residential retreat in the Upper Midwest, the Anderson Center provides residencies of two to four weeks to enable writers and artists of all kinds to create, advance, or complete works-in-progress.  Since it opened in 1995, the Center has hosted scores of visual artists, writers, performers, and scholars, from more than 45 states and 35 foreign countries.