3rd Street Studios Program

San Francisco Art Institute is excited to announce the launch of a professional studio residency program offered through its Public Education program. In this pilot year, 25 subsidized artist studios will be available in the thriving arts hub of the Dogpatch in San Francisco.

The program includes extensive facilities and technical resources, a supportive artist community alongside SFAI’s graduate program, and critical and professional development opportunities. The individual, semi-private studios range from 150–300 square feet.

The 3rd Street Studios Program seeks a diverse community of practices and individuals across known and unknown possibilities of contemporary art and culture. For the inaugural cohort, we are looking for artists and others for whom space, shared resources, and camaraderie will open new directions in their work. We are also interested in supporting practices that are at risk due to the economic climate of the Bay Area. This opportunity will pilot a program with the potential to dramatically increase in scale in Fall 2017.

The pilot program runs October 1, 2016 through the end of August, 2017. Studios will typically be awarded for this full term, but artists may apply for short-term participation on a space-available basis.

SFAI-affiliated artists—including alumni, faculty, Public Education students, and staff—are particularly encouraged to apply.

The subsidized studios, along with opportunities for active engagement in programs such as critique salons, and open studios events, will provide a platform for artists to activate their practice as they develop relationships with each other and within the broader art world. In the current economic climate, in which artist displacement is a significant threat to the Bay Area’s artistic community, SFAI hopes this program, alongside other efforts, will provide long-term support to artists.

Zoë Leonard (MFA 2017), studio view, 2016. San Francisco Art Insitute. Photo by Stephanie Smith.

Program Fees

Monthly residency fees will support participation in the program, studio and common space use, and utilities, along with regular critical and professional development opportunities organized by SFAI’s Public Education and Exhibitions and Public Programs departments. This fee is equivalent to $2 per square foot of occupied studio space.

Additional, intensive programmatic opportunities will be developed in collaboration with studio residents and available through additional fees.

Application Process

Artists will apply and be selected through a SlideRoom jury process. Completed applications will be reviewed by a jury of artists, curators, and art professionals. Each application will be evaluated based on merit of presented work, demonstrated commitment to one’s artistic practice, engagement with and/or displacement from the San Francisco Bay Area arts community, as well as the willingness and commitment to join, benefit from, and enhance the SFAI community (including current graduate students, staff, faculty, alumni, and visiting artists).

Application Checklist

Program Application 
CV as a PDF file, including the name, email, and phone number of three professional references
Letter of interest (300 words max). Please address your interest in the program, including why you would like to work alongside a larger community of artists and what this program can specifically offer for your practice. Please also address any experience you have with displacement in the Bay Area
10-15 images/documentation of work

Images (up to 5MB each)
Video (up to 250MB each)
Audio (up to 30MB each)
External media (from YouTube, Vimeo and SoundCloud)

Only complete applications will be reviewed. Apply online.


August 17, 2016  Application opens online
September 10, 2016  Application deadline
September 16, 2016  All applicants are notified regarding selections
October 1, 2016  Move-in begins at 3rd Street
Late August, 2017  Pilot residency term ends