The Centre for Craft host 3 Artist in Residency Programs:

The Summer Professional Development Residency (2 months)

airCRAFT Emerging Artist Residency (9 months)

Craft LAIR Local Artist in Residences (6 - 8 weeks)


Summer Professional Development Residency


Each spring, the Centre for Craft Nova Scotia accepts applications for the Summer Professional Development Residencies in the Ceramics, Wood, Metal/Jewellery, and Weaving/Textile Studios


Application Deadline:

Fridayy, April 30, 2021 at midnight.


  • Advanced students and recent graduates
  • Emerging, Pre-professional and self-directed artists who need time and space to develop a body of work while exploring individual style and technique
  • Individuals who work independently, conduct themselves in a professional manner and are comfortable working in a cooperative studio environment

Resources, Opportunities, and Artist Responsibilities:

  • The residency will take place from June 29 - September 4, 2021(dates are approximate updated dates TBA)
  • The studios will be accessible 24 hours a day
  • Residents are expected to keep their spaces and the studio tidy, as well as treat the facilities and equipment respectfully
  • There is an expectaion of a minimum of 20hrs comitted studio time per week (please out line your potential schedule)
  • A group exhibition of resident’s work at the Mary E. Black Gallery
    • Opening September 2 at 6:00pm
    • Runs from September 3 to 19, 2021
  • Mandatory orientation the first day + 3 other mandatory group meetings throughout the residency:
    • 1st meeting within first week: Artist talks and goals for residence
    • 2nd meeting after a month: group sharing discussions on progress/issues/problem solving
    • 3rd meeting at the end: gallery show organization, artist statements, bios, invites, set up

Program Fees:

  • $325 + HST
  • $50 damage deposit which will be returned upon the completion of the residency provided no damage has been done to the studios or equipment, studios are left clean, and keys returned

Application Process:

Complete online FORM (if you are having trouble filling out the online form please email all the information to

Attachments to form must include:

  • NEW - Due to Covid-19 we will be accepting less participants to meet the health and safety protocols
    NEW - please provide a detailed working schedule for being in the studio. What time of day? How many hours? How many days a week?
  • One page Letter of Intent describing your proposed project and what facilities you plan to use
  • C.V. (2 pages maximum)
  • 10 (no more) images of current work in jpeg format (each images should not excess 1mb 72dpi) 
  • reference sheet of the images and a description of materials, processes, size, title and date
  • Two letters of reference *Note – Letters of Recommendation SHOULD NOT BE OPENED OR SENT BY APPLICANT. THEY MUST BE SENT UNDER SEPARATE COVER DIRECTLY to the Studio Coordinator. It is your responsibility to ensure we have both letters of recommendation on or prior to the application deadline.

Recommendation Forms can be filled out by Referee 2 ways:

Only successful applicants will be contacted     

For more information please contact Alexis Vessey, Studio Coordinator, at 902.492.2524 or by email

airCRAFT Emerging Artist Residency 

The airCRAFT Emerging Artists Residency is a one-of-a-kind craft dedicated residency strives to support emerging artists taking the next steps in their careers. Through a 9-month residency, the Centre will work with residents one-on-one to individualize and tailor the program to suit their particular objectives for their art careers. Whether the resident would like to pursue a career in production or to create a new body of work to exhibit in galleries, this residency is for them to explore and develop their practice towards the next step in their career. With studios in Ceramics, Wood, Jewellery, and Weaving/Textile the program supports up to 3 participants.

Timeline: (2020/21 Open to Applications)

  • Applications due July 19, 2021 at Midnight 
  • Notified or interviewed by Friday, August 10th, 2021 (dates are approximate updated dates TBA)
  • Notice of acceptance by resident by Thursday, August 21th, 2021 at 4:00pm (dates are approximate updated dates TBA)
  • Mandatory orientation Tuesday, September 15th, 2021 
  • Program runs from September 15th, 2021- June 15th, 2022


  • Emerging Artist – (early stage of their career)
  • Must have a BFA or proven skills in medium - technical/ knowledge
  • Self-directed, independent, and can conduct themselves in a professional manner in a cooperative studio environment
  • Applicants should have clear objectives for their career

Resources and Opportunities:

  • An Artist Talk launch to showcase residents 
  • Monthly professional development sessions and peer to peer consultations 
  • Access to up to $1000 approved for costs including but not limited to materials, local travel, professional development, equipment, memberships
  • Connecting participants with professionals in their field
  • Staff support in application or grant development
  • 24-hour access to studios (classes will continue to be held in the studios during the program residents must work around scheduled classes)
  • Possible paid work available to gain experience in teaching, public speaking and interaction, gallery install and take down, retail and sales, and studio technician.

Artist Responsibilities:

  • Attending monthly professional development and peer to peer consultations
  • An Artist Talk or Formal Presentation
  • Presentation of work created (e.g. Pop-up show, booth in a market, Gallery show)
  • Public program/ workshop
  • At the end resident should have clear business plan/development strategy/practice structure/personal plan/trajectory

Program Fees:

  • $200 a month
  • $100 refundable damage deposit

For more information please contact Alexis Vessey, the Studio Coordinator at 902-492-2524 or

Application Process:

*NEW* Complete Online form 

(if you are having trouble filling out the online form please email all the information to

Attachments to form must include:

  • One-page letter of intent describing your proposed project - Include goals and direction of work
  • C.V. (2-page max)
  • 5 images of past work-jpeg format (each images should not excess 1mb 72dpi)
  • 5 images of current work-jpeg format (each images should not excess 1mb 72dpi)
  • 2 sketches of possible future work-jpeg format (each images should not excess 1mb 72dpi)
  • reference sheet of the images and a description of materials, processes, size, title and date

Recommendation Forms:


For more information please contact Alexis Vessey, Studio Coordinator, at 902.492.2524 or by email

Craft LAIR (Local Artist in Residence) 

Complementing our emerging artist residencies, the Craft LAIR (Local Artist In Residence) offers a studio space to local professional artists and artisans interested in engaging with the public. The Craft LAIR is programmed alongside the exhibitions for the Mary E. Black Gallery. These six to eight week, project-based residencies offer craft-artists a free, 10 x 22 foot, secure, public facing, work/display/flex space adjacent to our Mary E. Black Gallery. In exchange, artists are asked to engage the public through open studio hours, exhibition and/or public programming. Artists have found the public engagement and feedback from people to be the most beneficial aspect of the residency. We encourage artists to use the Craft LAIR as an experimental space to explore new ideas, work with alternative materials, work in larger scales and to engage with the public and craft communities to gain feedback on their work. 

Possible ideas for Craft LAIR residencies include mounting a small exhibit alongside a workspace, useing the whole space as a dedicated studio to make new work, makeing the space into a pop-up shop, experimenting with developing an installation over the course of the residency, focusing on staging work for documentation and designing new presentation styles, working with new and alternative materials, exploreing new methods of digital programing with craft based processes, etc... If you have an idea for a CraftLAIR project that you think falls outside of this call, please don't hesitate to contact us to see if it may be a good fit!

Throughout the global pandemic Craft LAIR residents have continued to work with either a closed studio space or the option of safe public interaction. New fronteirs of public engament via digital outreach have been explored. The Mary E. Black has reopened and now runs on new hours Wed-Sat 11-4. We established protocols in order to safely welcome the public back in our spaces. The public component of the Craft LAIR residency is widely flexible entierly depending on the resident's comfort levels. We have been extremely pleased to continue to offer safe, free studio space to our residents through this program and will continue to operate in this model until further notice.

Logistical Information about the Craft LAIR studio:
The Craft LAIR offers a free 10' x 22' public facing studio space with 24 hour access adjacent to the Mary E. Black Gallery. The space is clean and has adjustable track lighting, cement floors, multiple electrical outlets and access to sinks in another room. A large table, chairs, shelving and some plinths as well as supplies and equipment for installation and de-installation can be provided by the Centre for Craft. This residency is best suited for artists who are able to carry out their proposed project within the studio space of the Craft LAIR without access to further facitlities. 


  • Letter outlining the proposed project to be undertaken during the residency, and dates of availability (1 page max) This should also include a proposal of one public event and/or a description of how the applicant intends to engage the public through the residency
  • A brief bio and artist statement (1 page max)
  • CV demonstrating professional experience
  • 10 images of related work and 1-2 sketches of proposed project, video, audio or other digital media also accepted. See Aplication form for more details.
  • Image reference list
  • An image of yourself for promotional purposes if accepted * not required but encouraged
  • Application form includes choices for time block dates as well as options for desidency structure

Each Craft LAIR residency time slot runs for the diration of the exhibitions programmed in the Mary E. Black Gallery.

  • Residency slots available:

Residency is fully programmed for the year of 2021. New calls for application for year of 2022 TBA

The committee endeavors to accomodate requested dates as well as to schedule residencies which create connections with Mary E. Black Gallery exhibitions.

Evaluation criteria:

  • Quality of applicant’s work 
  • The artistic merit of the proposed project
  • Applicant’s professional experience as a craft artist
  • The capacity of the Centre for Craft Nova Scotia to support the success of the project within the CraftLAIR studio


  • Dedicate a significant portion of your time to your project during the residency. Residency structure options are clarified in greater detail on the application form.
  • Engage with the public either in person or through social media or other virtual platforms or programming.
  • The CraftLAIR space must be returned to its original state at the end of the residency


  • 10’ x 22’ secure work-room with glass doors (no ventilation - scents prohibited)
  • Opportunity to receive regular feed back from the public as well as the staff of the Centre for Craft Nova Scotia.
  • Public reception introducing the residency alongside the Mary E Black Gallery opening *Mary E. Black is currently hosting soft openings by invite only, this may evolve as restrictions lift.
  • Inclusion in our promotional program
  • Opportunity to sell work  directly to visitors
  • Limited access to additional facilities outside our regular course schedule can be negotiated with the studio coordinator and technicians in wood, metal, glass, ceramic, and weaving. This is determined on a case by case basis and must be detailed in your application. 

Fill out the online form by clicking here. Deadline early fall, 2021 TBA.

We offer assistance in creating and submitting applications and the Craft LAIR program will accept applications in alternative formats such as submissions by video or audio. Feel free to contact the Centre for any information regarding the Craft LAIR application at, 902-492-2522 or by coming in person to the Mary E. Black Gallery Wednesday - Friday 11-4.