RIGHT OF RETURN USA Fellowship

APPLICATIONS ARE NOW OPEN. DEADLINE IS JANUARY 20, 2023 11:59PM (EST). THOSE SELECTED WILL BE NOTIFIED BY FEBRUARY 6, 2023.

The Right of Return Fellowship was co-founded in 2017 by justice-impacted artists Russell Craig and Jesse Krimes. It was established by artists, for artists as the first and only national initiative dedicated to supporting and mentoring formerly incarcerated creatives. Right of Return Fellows produces work that advances criminal and racial justice.

The annual, open-call Fellowship is intended for people working in all disciplines, including visual art, performance, poetry, sound, media, and design. Each year, six fellows are given awards of $20,000 to support projects and new works that reflect the humanity of criminalized and incarcerated people and build public will for ambitious and visionary change. Additionally, Right of Return fellows and alumni convene annually to foster community, build advocacy skills, and work toward practice sustainability.

Right of Return exemplifies how integrating artists into the reform movement can cultivate nimble, resonant, and engaging campaigns to end mass incarceration and advance racial equity. In just five-year, Right of Return has already had a transformative impact:

  • 25 fellows have been supported in creating new works in partnership with advocacy organizations and leaders in the justice reform movement
  • 30 new relationships have been fostered between artists and advocates working on policies and practices to end mass incarceration
  • Alumni have gone on to receive the MacArthur Genius grant, the Pulitzer Prize, Guggenheim Fellowships, Creative Capital awards, Creatives Rebuild New York awards, and Art for Justice grants.
  • Right of Return Alumni are included in many nationally celebrated projects, such as the groundbreaking publication and traveling exhibition Marking Time: Art in the Age of Mass Incarceration, by Dr. Nicole R. Fleetwood. 

We’re excited to announce the 2023 application for our 5th cohort is now open!

$20,000 will be awarded to six formerly incarcerated artists working to end mass incarceration.

Applications are now open! For more information and to apply, visit http://rightofreturnusa.com.

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