Jan 28

The Fellowship for Black Artists is Back for Its Third Year!

by: Ilse García Romero

This year there will be a specific focus on community-centered art and collaboration. 

Mural Arts’ Philadelphia Fellowship for Black Artists is coming back for its third year this month with a couple of new elements. For the 2022 Fellowship, 15 artists showing interest in socially engaged public art and working collaboratively will be selected. The selected artists will receive $2,000 each in unrestricted funding.

This year, Fellows will be placed into teams based on skill sets and personal interests. Each team will then have the opportunity to respond to community mural requests. Mural Arts is committed to engaging communities about social justice issues within their neighborhoods and addressing them through art to spur change. Fellows will receive an additional project-specific stipend for this work and have project management support from Mural Arts staff.


Philadelphia Fellowship for Black Artists 2021 group exhibition opening at Rush Arts, October 8, 2021. Photo by Erin Blewett.

Sponsored by TD Bank, the Fellowship is designed to fund, foster, and elevate the important work of Black artists of all mediums residing within Philadelphia. Through a seven-month program, Mural Arts’ Fellows will engage with a public art curriculum, including workshops on project planning, community engagement, mural design, and mural installation. Additionally, Fellows will have the opportunity to collaborate with community members and other artists.

“Being selected as a Mural Arts Fellow helped boost my confidence in myself as a legitimate fine artist, mostly by placing me in conversation with such talented, dynamic people in this city,” says Robert Carter, a member of the 2021 cohort. “Artists I would otherwise have never met or heard of have become valued colleagues and peers.”

In addition to the Fellowship, Mural Arts will amplify the Fellows and their work across its social channels and connect Fellows to its network of local and international artists. Fellows also will receive Financial Planning sessions courtesy of TD Bank, 1:1 portfolio consulting from local curators, create proposals for public art projects, and learn about Mural Art’s community-engaged art process from ideation to installation.

Philadelphia Fellowship for Black Artists 2021 group exhibition opening at Rush Arts, October 8, 2021. Photo by Erin Blewett.

"My initial intention with the fellowship was to make sure it wasn’t performative. At the time, I was seeing a lot of new interest in Black artists that seemed to be marketing opportunities for companies and organizations to be on the right side of history. Instead of avoiding these calls, I took it as an opportunity to hold them accountable by being transparent about the needs of artists. Artists often work in a vacuum so I knew the greatest value of the Fellowship for Black Artists would be the fellowship. The introduction to the vast network of artists and connections have been invaluable contributions to my personal and professional growth."

- Yannick Lowery, 2021 Fellow

The Fellowship is open to African American or Black artists residing in Philadelphia. Applications will open February 7, 2022, at 9 a.m. and are due by 9 a.m. on February 28, 2022. The application includes portfolio images, personality profiles, artist profiles, and public art interest/experience. 

View the application here. Questions can be directed to FBA3@muralarts.org. For more information and the full program timeline, visit the Philadelphia Fellowship for Black Artists webpage


Last updated: Feb 7, 2022

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Wajiyha Abdullah says

I wish to work on a mural.