Call Detail
AIR Artist-in-Residence Program at Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator 2020
525 S Hewitt St
Los Angeles, CA

Contact Email:
Call Type: Residencies
Eligibility: Local
State: California
Entry Deadline: 3/2/20
Application Closed
Images - Minimum: 7, Maximum: 10
Audio - Minimum: 0, Maximum: 3
Video - Minimum: 0, Maximum: 3
Total Media - Minimum: 7, Maximum: 10

About AIR
AIR is a one-of-a-kind residency program housed at Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI). Each year via an open-call process we invite three research-led Los Angeles based artists to join our community of innovators in addressing our most urgent global challenge: the climate crisis. 

The residency carries: 

  • $13,000 total stipend provided over the course of 6 months to research and develop artwork investigating aspects of the climate crisis
  • Research and collaboration opportunities with leading minds in various aspects of cleantech
  • Training and access to over $10M of prototyping equipment via the Advanced Prototyping Center (APC). While the residency itself lasts six months, selected artists may continue APC membership for a further six months at no cost, enabling a full twelve months access to state-of-the-art tools, equipment and expertise.

Based in the heart of the Arts District in Downtown Los Angeles, the residency runs approximately June - December 2020, with a culminating work-in-progress exhibition in January 2021. APC membership will continue through May 2021. 

Mission and Goals

AIR, the Artist-in-Residence Program at Los Angeles Cleantech Incubator (LACI), empowers innovation by uniting the creative and cleantech communities in addressing the climate crisis.

We do this in the following ways: 

  1. Providing Los Angeles based artists with research opportunities in diverse climate-related areas.
  2. Providing access to prototyping tools, knowledge and technology to develop works resulting from this research.
  3. Facilitating collaborations between resident artists, resident experts, Portfolio Companies and our extended networks working across climate-related specializations.
  4. Initiating accessible dialogue and community engagement at the intersection of art, technology and sustainability.
  5. Presenting free artists’ talks, professional development programming, and educational workshops both on and off campus throughout the year. 

Program Details

Career level artists from all backgrounds and of all disciplines are invited to apply.

AIR offers Resident Artists (RA):

  1. Access to an extensive network of entrepreneurs, innovators and thought leaders. Further details on the LACI community can be found here and here. 
  2. Full equipment training in the Advanced Prototyping Center (APC). No previous experience is necessary. Artists new to prototyping are actively encouraged to apply. Further details on the APC can be found here.
  3. 12-month access to a professional prototyping facility within a clean technology startup environment.
  4. A cash stipend of $12,000 over the first 6 months.
  5. A consumables stipend of $1,000 for materials used in the APC.

The Ideal Candidate

AIR is dedicated to reflecting the diversity of Los Angeles. Artists of all backgrounds working with climate-related concerns are encouraged to apply.

AIR is rooted in research, collaboration, and exploration. The ideal Resident Artist (RA) will encompass the following:

  1. Capacity to work in a multidisciplinary form: instinctively rotating between researcher (in collaboration with the LACI and the research community), student (when learning new mechanical techniques in the APC), studio artist (when ideas and process integrate into the artist’s Los Angeles based studio practice) and communicator (when discussing their work and learnings with the public).
  2. Willingness to generously collaborate with the LACI community, challenge  ways of thinking and expand practices across all disciplines.
  3. Instigate in unique and engaging ways public discussion around the climate crisis and possible mitigation strategies. 
  4. Be a strategic thinker, challenger of ideas, interdisciplinary collaborator and entrepreneur in their own right.
  5. Plant intellectual seeds and grow relationships that over time have tangible impact in Los Angeles and beyond.
  6. Be self-directed and driven while also curious, flexible and open to change.  
  7. Will experience growth as a result of access to expansive research networks and mechanical learning.
  8. Have a background in or willingness to learn layout software such as Adobe Illustrator or similar for 2D work, and Fusion 360 or similar for 3D work. Use of the APC is reliant on digital image creation. Therefore RAs must be or become conversant in digital file preparation.  


  1. Eligibility is restricted to Los Angeles area artists only. Studio space and housing are not provided. For the purpose of this residency, the Los Angeles area is defined as a maximum one hour commute to/from LACI within Los Angeles County boundaries. Preference is  given to artists who have been resident in the Los Angeles area for a minimum of three consecutive years. 
  2. Artists must maintain their studio or home workspace throughout the residency period. AIR does not provide dedicated artist studio space.
  3. Artists must have completed education a minimum of five (5) years prior to applying, or display equivalent professional experience through submitted portfolio and CV. Higher education and/or gallery representation are not required. Current students and recent graduates are not eligible for AIR.
  4. Artists are required to work onsite at LACI a minimum of 12 hours per week throughout the entirety of the six-month residency. LACI/APC hours of operation are Monday – Friday, 9am – 7pm. Absence in excess of two weeks during the residency will not be considered unless discussed in advance.
  5. Artists’ work must utilize both the technical and intellectual capacity of LACI: working in collaboration with our extensive network of thought leaders, and in the APC to create significant aspects of their work. 
  6. AIR is open to individual artists only. We regret that we cannot currently accommodate artist teams or artists’ assistants. Artists are welcome to apply as individuals and work within a collective outside the parameters of LACI. Feel free to reach out if you work in a collective and would like eligibility clarification.  
  7. Employees or affiliate members of LACI companies or programs are not eligible to apply. While we recognize and admire our community’s creative talent, AIR is concentrated and intensive. We expect our participants to be focused and committed to AIR and its mission. 

We encourage all artists considering applying to attend a public tour of the facility. Tours take place every Friday at 12 PM. Register online for a public tour here. Please note: this is not an AIR-specific tour, but will provide an overview of LACI and the capability of the APC.

Learn more about LACI and the APC on our website.

LACI does not discriminate against qualified applicants based upon any protected group status, including but not limited to race, color, creed, religion, sex, national origin, ancestry, age, marital status, military or veteran status, sexual orientation, physical or mental disability or medical condition as defined by applicable equal opportunity laws. Applicants of all backgrounds are highly encouraged to apply. 

Responsibilities of Resident Artists

  1. Presence on campus 12 hours per week or more. LACI and the APC are open Monday – Friday, 9 AM – 7 PM. Weekend access to the APC is currently unavailable.
  2. Participate in public talks, presentations and workshops. 
  3. Attend monthly status meetings.
  4. Participate in a 2-day LACI orientation. Tentatively scheduled March 31 - April 1, 2020. 
  5. Participate in a 5 day full-time APC training. Training is required even if artists have previous experience with similar equipment. Anticipated date: late May / early June 2020. 
  6. Create a limited edition work using APC equipment. Half of the edition is retained by the artist; half of the edition is donated to LACI. Minimum edition size is 12 + APs. Artists retain copyright of their work at all times.
  7. Participate in a Work-in-Progress exhibition and group panel discussion (both free and open to the public) to discuss the residency experience. 
  8. Attend AIR events whenever possible.
  9. Participate in occasional studio visits with AIR Committee members, community members and key supporters.
  10. Remain in contact with AIR after the residency has concluded.
    AIR is planting seeds to enable the development and creation of far-reaching work about the climate crisis. In order to measure our impact, we check in with RAs periodically after the residency period has ended to learn how work and collaborative relationships have evolved. 

About the Limited Edition

The creation and sharing of a limited edition work using APC equipment is an important part of AIR. Artists’ generosity in participating in the shared limited edition will achieve the following:

  1. Provide LACI with a clear way to tell the story of AIR.
  2. Build a collection of climate-related artworks to be exhibited throughout the LACI campus, loaned to exhibitions, museums, institutions, etc.  

We will do our utmost to keep participating artists informed of all loan and collections activity.
Artists retain full copyright of their work at all times. 

Application Process

  1. Artist Statement (1,000 characters maximum):
    Please provide a brief summary of your practice. You may discuss this in both conceptual and material terms. Feel free to reference previous projects relevant to your application.
  2. Submit a Project Proposal (3,000 characters maximum): 
    Please specify:
    A. Research topics of interest    
    B. The capacity of the work to initiate dialogue around the climate crisis and possible mitigation strategies.
    C. Ways in which you may utilize LACI’s network of innovators and thought     leaders (particular research ideas, collaborative opportunities, etc). You will     find a list of LACI Portfolio Companies here.
    Proposals exploring energy, transportation, and circular economy are highly encouraged.
  3. Artist CV/Resume (15,000 characters maximum)
    Please note: formatting will not be retained in the application form.
  4. Three (3) professional references including name, title, affiliation, and contact details.
    Please note: references will only be contacted for short-listed applicants. Formal letters of recommendation are not required at this time.
  5. Portfolio: Ten (10) works including descriptions of up to 300 characters per work. Please utilize this space to share the ideas behind the work, including any relevant collaborators, research or production methods.

Selection Criteria

Artists are selected by a rotating independent committee of professionals from the arts, cleantech, and the built environment. 

Each application will be judged on the following criteria:

  1. Potential of the proposed project to benefit from the technical and intellectual capital offered by LACI. Strong proposals will make reference to the specific areas of specialization and tools of the Advanced Prototyping Center. Proposals exploring energy, transit and circular economy are highly encouraged. 
  2. Potential of the proposed project to initiate dialogue around the climate crisis and possible mitigation strategies.
  3. Potential of the proposed project to meaningfully contribute to collaborative and interdisciplinary conversations.
  4. Applicant’s long-term commitment to a creative practice as evidenced by portfolio and experience.
  5. Applicant’s potential for expansion within a research-led environment.
  6. Applicant’s ability to articulate ideas clearly and concisely.

Previous selection committee members include Taj Ahamd Eldredge (LACI), Sherin Guirguis (Artist), Amanda Hunt (MoCA), Letitia Fernandez Ivins (Metro), Thom Mayne (Morphosis, SCI-Arc), Josette Melchor (Gray Area), Kori Newkirke (Artist), Matt Petersen (LACI), Alma Ruiz (MoCA), Megan Steinman (The Underground Museum). 

Selection Process

Our interdisciplinary selection committee will review applications and recommend up to eight shortlisted candidates for interview. Shortlisted candidates will be invited to LACI in the latter part of March to discuss proposals with key stakeholders.
In 2020, LACI will award three residencies from the open call process.
The selection committee evaluates applications based on the aforementioned selection criteria.

Expected Timeline

1/28, 9AM PST — Launch public call for artists
3/2, 10:59PM PST — Close public call for artists
3/3 – 3/13 — Application review
3/16-3/20 — Artist interviews
3/20 - Final artist selection
3/31-4/1 - Artist Orientation
6/1-6/5 - APC training week (full time)
1/2021— Work-in-progress exhibition / panel discussion
2020 Jan-Dec — AIR Public programming

Timeline is estimated and subject to change. 


Frequently Asked Questions

1. Does it cost anything to submit an application?
No. Applying to AIR is free.

2. I have been a practicing artist for many years, but have no formal training. Am I eligible?
Yes, you are eligible and invited to apply. No formal training is required.

3. Does AIR provide studio space?
No. AIR provides access to a state-of-the-art prototyping facility during working hours only. Artists are required to maintain their existing creative workspace through the course of the residency.

4. My studio is in my home. Am I still eligible?

5. Why Los Angeles area artists only?
AIR plants seeds that take time to grow; and builds community while doing so.  We support the Los Angeles creative community by providing access to networks and resources that will flourish with local knowledge and time. This is why our residency is most suited to a creative practice rooted in the Los Angeles area.

6. What constitutes the Los Angeles area?
For the purpose of this residency, Los Angeles County and surrounding areas within a one hour commute of LACI.

7. I’ve been a Los Angeles resident for less than three years. Am I still eligible?
Preference will be given to artists who have been resident in the Los Angeles area for a minimum of three years.

8. What do you mean by ‘research-led artist’?
‘Research-led artist’ refers to an artist whose work involves periods of information gathering and/or research, which clearly shapes the resulting work(s).

9. Who owns the copyright to my work?
You do. LACI will request permission to use images of works in relation to the program, but artists retain copyright of their work at all times.

10. How will LACI utilize the limited edition?
LACI will utilize the limited edition in order to disseminate the message of AIR. This may include (but is not limited to): loaning works for external exhibition, displaying works at future AIR exhibitions, supporting future or additional AIR programming, gifting works to donors. We will do our utmost to keep participating artists informed of all loan and collections activity.

11. I’ve never used prototyping equipment before. Am I eligible?
Yes. Full equipment training is provided. Artists from all backgrounds and all technical experience levels are encouraged to apply.

12. I am part of an artist collective. Can we apply together?
No. AIR can accommodate only individual artists at this time.

13. I work with assistants. If I am accepted, will they also have access to the APC?
No. AIR can accommodate only individual artists at this time.

14. I already have access to mechanical tools or research networks. Am I still eligible?
AIR is an opportunity for our artists to expand on multiple levels. If you already have access to a facility that provides intellectual and technical opportunities, please specify clearly in your application how AIR would significantly expand your practice. 

If you have a question not answered in the FAQ’s above, please email: with “AIR Application Query” in the subject line. We will get back to you as soon as possible.

Questions are accepted through Friday February 21st, at which point all questions and answers will be shared on this page in an amended FAQ.

AIR is part of a global community of creative thinkers researching, collaborating, strategizing, and working towards solutions for the climate crisis. We cannot exist without the dedication, inquiry and participation of artists committed to this subject. Whether through applying, attending talks or workshops, or simply following our work from afar, we thank you for your participation and contribution to this vital dialogue. 

Thank you for considering applying for AIR.

Print this Page    View Legal Agreement