The House Lights Fellowship is a new artist residency program in public libraries, developing the next generation of artist-leaders who work to build more creative and connected communities.

 

What is the House Lights Fellowship?

A 501(c)3 nonprofit organization recruiting exceptional early career artist-leaders, placing them in residencies at public libraries, where they devise and deliver Creative Community Infrastructure: networks, events, and opportunities for people to come together and create together.

 

How does it work?

  • We recruit recent graduates of all disciplines (visual artists, performing artists, digital artists) in search of purpose and fulfillment

  • We train the Fellows to apply their creativity, charisma, and collaborative skills to community leadership

  • We connect the Fellows with a host library that co-produces arts programming to enhance the library’s impact and reach new patrons

  • We support the Fellows and the libraries with ongoing coaching, mentorship, fundraising, and promotion

 

Why?

America faces a crisis of social cohesion in the 21st century. Economic inequality, political tension, and cultural divisions lead to disconnection, distrust, and dissolving community bonds. We need more opportunities to come together as citizens and neighbors, to imagine and create and celebrate together. 

 

At the same time, we graduate thousands of young artists from art schools and universities every year, into fields with long odds and limited prospects. These young artists have developed exactly the skills needed to create the opportunities for connection we need in our communities- they are entrepreneurial, compassionate, forward-thinking, and enthusiastic. 

 

Training these young artists and placing them in a fundamental civic cornerstone- the public library- is a way to bring creative practice into the everyday life of a community. At the library, the artist will have a home base to launch artistic projects and events that engage the community, amplify local voices, and illuminate the many ways in which we need our neighbors.