Reading residency


What is The reading residency?

A juried program designed specifically for agents of social change to dedicate a full weekend to themselves: to reading and self-care.

The awardee of each residency will receive free housing and amenities on site, in addition to a small stipend for food and reading material.

There is currently ONE residency per year. We are hoping to expand to multiple residencies in different cities.

The application has a fee of $6.00.


  • $150 stipend for reading material, food + drink.
  • ADDITIONAL $150 stipend (contributed by an anonymous donor)!
  • Available Spirits
  • Tea + Coffee
  • Light Breakfast + Snacks
  • Access to Candor Library
  • Heat
  • Guitar
  • NO Internet access
  • NO Television
  • NO Computer
  Each resident will receive a gift bag of a few  Candor publications and products  in a  STILL LEARNING tote .

Each resident will receive a gift bag of a few Candor publications and products in a STILL LEARNING tote.


  • The residency is entirely spent taking care of yourself, through reading and relaxing.
  • Stay from Friday evening to Monday morning.
  • Arrange transportation to arrive + depart on time
    • [This residency is located in the Humboldt Park neighborhood of Chicago, the address will be disclosed only to awardees.]
  • A short written reflection on your experience.


The judging panel will base their scoring on:

  • Candidate's working relationship to social progress.
  • What will be read at this residency and why.
  • Applicant's essay about why this residency is appropriate and timely for the candidate.

Words from our first resident:

"When I arrived at the residency space that was to be my home for the weekend, I felt a sense of excitement as I took in the warm and cozy surroundings. The book that I had picked to read for the weekend was No More Heroes: Grassroots Challenges to the Savior Mentality by Jordan Flaherty. It had been on my list to read for a while, because the issues the book addresses are important and relatable to the work I engage in. The main thesis of the book is that when it comes to grassroots social justice work, our mindset shouldn’t be that we are saving people and that our education and privilege means we should be in charge of organizations and projects. We should follow the lead of those most impacted by oppression and center the needs of the most marginalized.
Throughout the weekend, I was able to reflect on how these ideas show up in my own work and reading No More Heroes was a great reminder to myself to constantly check-in about my own practices and mindset. In addition to reading No More Heroes, I had the opportunity to begin reading We Gon’ Be Alright: Notes on Race and Resegregation by Jeff Chang, which was available in the residency’s amazing library.
I would highly recommend applying for the Candor Arts reading residency. It is a great opportunity to take some time away from our busy lives to devote to reading, resting, self-care and reflection. The reading residency is a great way to recharge yourself and prepare to continue your work with a renewed sense of purpose, energy, and passion."

Tasasha Henderson, 2017 Reading Residency Winner

2017 Honorable Mentions: 

Nina Yeboah

Michael Fischer

Official Announcement

2018 reading residency Winner: 

noel quiñones


2018 Honorable Mentions: 

Johnnie Jae Morris

Anaïs Duplan

Jean Cho

Official Announcement

2018 Suggested Reading List

2018 Panel of Jurors

Kendra Curry-Khanna

(Chicago, IL) — Executive Director at 826CHI

Sam Bailey

(Chicago, IL / Los Angeles, CA) — Director, Writer, and Digital Art Director of VAM Studio


(Los Angeles, CA) — Artist


(Chicago, IL) — Learning & Development Consultant 

Katie Chung

(Chicago, IL) — Artist

Teresa Carlesimo

(Kingston, Ontario) — artist, writer, scholar

Jeffrey Michael Austin

(Chicago, IL) — Artist and musician

Oriana Koren

(Los Angeles, CA) — Photographer-Writer

Iris Yirei hu

(Los Angeles, CA) — Artist

La Keisha Leek

(Brooklyn, NY) — independent exhibition organizer and writer; Manager, Kenan Project at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, creator of How to Make A Hood (Candor Arts, August 2015)

Cecil McDonald, Jr.

(Chicago, IL) — Artist and educator, author of In the Company of Black (Candor Arts, April 2017)

Suzan Geldhoff, MA

(Rotterdam, Netherlands) — visual arts professional specialized in photography

Vivian Sming

(San Francisco, CA) — Artist, Writer, Editor in Chief of Art Practical, Founding Editor of Nonsensical, Founder & Publisher of Sming Sming Books

Conor Dowdle

(Minneapolis, MN) — Artist, and Co-Director of Yeah Maybe 

Kate Bowen 

(Chicago, IL) — Artist, Organizer, Director of ACRE Projects and Video Programming Coordinator at the Museum of Contemporary Photography 

A-lan Holt

(Bay Area, CA) — Playwright, Filmmaker, Associate Director at IDA Stanford, author of Moonwork (Candor Arts, June 2016)

Chinwe Okona

(Los Angeles, CA) — Artist, Writer, Creator of PALMSS Mag

Melanie Teresa Bohrer

(Munich, Germany / Chicago, IL) — Artist 

Erin Hoyt

(Chicago, IL) — Director of Operations at Filter Photo

Christian Ortiz

(Chicago, IL) — Artist, educator, and Senior Manager of Studio Programs at Marwen

Lauren M. Pacheco 

(Chicago, IL / Gary, IN) — Arts Administrator, Community Organizer, and Co-Founder of Chicago Lowrider Festival and Chicago Urban Art Society

Matthew Anderson

(Los Angeles, CA) — Artist and Filmmaker, creator of Deviant Proposals: an anti-binary journal (Candor Arts, April 2018)

Sara J. Winston

(Peekskill, NY) — Artist, author of A Lick and a Promise (Candor Arts, September 2017)

David Bell

(Los Angeles, CA) — Artist and Director of Visitor Welcome Center, author of Bye Bye Broadway (Candor Arts, August 2016)