The Lighthouse Works' fellowship program accepts artists working in a wide range of disciplines, but we are best able to accommodate visual artists, writers, and musicians. Artistic excellence is the primary criterion for acceptance as a Lighthouse Works fellow.

A sculpture by Jaques Vidal, Summer Fellow 2012,
takes shape in the Fishers Island Sound.

Any serious artist at any stage of his or her career is welcome to apply through our online application system. Applicants are required to fill out an application form and to submit work samples and a statement of intent. While our staff reviews applications for completeness, a panel of professionals in the applicant's artistic field evaluates each portfolio. Because the fellowship program accepts only 15 artists a year, our process is necessarily quite selective.

Fellowships are six weeks in length and occur year-round. The Lighthouse Works provides fellows with housing, food, studio space, a $250 travel allowance and a stipend of $1,500 to defray the costs of shipping materials, the purchase of art supplies, and other expenses incurred in making artwork in a remote location; our belief is that no artist should have to spend money to accept the opportunity of a fellowship.

While fellows' primary obligation is to the solitary pursuit of their creative projects, we do ask every artist to participate in a single studio tour, reading or performance for the public at the conclusion of their fellowship. In addition, fellows have the chance (though they are not required) to teach workshops, mentor students, or invite them for studio visits, and many of our past fellows have taken that opportunity.

Our program is unique in its size and intimacy; we invite just three artists for each fellowship season. In a program this small, everyone—from artists to staff to community members to the workers trailing to the ferry at day's end—gets to know each other. Thus the fellowship, while allowing ample solitude and plenty of unstructured work time, also allows for conversation, collaboration, and friendship.



Any serious artist at any stage or his or her career is welcome to apply for a Lighthouse Works fellowship through our online application system.

Applicants are required to fill out an application form and to submit work samples and a statement of intent. Further explanation of the application materials can be found here.

While our staff reviews applications for completeness, a jury of experts in each artist's field evaluates the applications. Finalists will be invited for phone or skype interviews, and all applicants will be informed of the committee's decision by the notification date for the relevant application period.



As we may have mentioned elsewhere, The Lighthouse Works' fellowship program is unique in its size and intimacy. While other residency programs house artists in private cottages or in communal dorms, on Fishers Island our fellows are housed—well, in a house. Fellows share a home with our program's directors and an affectionate cat named Dick. Fellows have private bedrooms but share bathrooms, a kitchen and living space. The house is always stocked with food (with dietary needs accommodated), and most nights the directors cook for—and eat dinner with—the fellows. Past fellows have loved the supportive, familial nature of this arrangement.

The Lighthouse Works has studio spaces in the Ferry Annex Building, located adjacent to the cove where the ferry arrives and departs on the north side of the island. Our studios for visual artists are at least 20'x20', with great light and views of the ocean. Our writer's studio is 9'x12' with a partial view of the water. Please contact us if you are an applicant or prospective fellow and have questions about our studio facilities.


Life on Fishers Island is not quite like life anywhere else in the continental United States. We have some of the most beautiful beaches and rocky coastlines anywhere on the east coast, yet they are seldom crowded. The island's "downtown" is a village green with only the most critical services: a post office, liquor store, ice cream shop, and two boutiques. It is literally green, with a bright emerald lawn and picnic tables in the shade. There's an idyllic, post-war feeling about the place, and one could easily be the only customer in the grocery store on a fall afternoon.

Light has a different quality on Fishers Island, and so does time—the former clearer, more golden, and the latter slower. Things never quite seem to happen on schedule, and no one seems to care.

When planning to come to Fishers Island, you should know that life is dictated by the ferry schedule. You should also realize that you cellular phone is likely to function poorly, if at all, and that sometimes the internet just goes out for a day. Mail doesn’t arrive when your online tracking says it has, and you don’t dare ask where it is. Everything— everything—is a little bit more expensive.

In exchange for these inconveniences and peculiarities, you might cook your dinner over a bonfire on a completely deserted beach, or go swimming in the Atlantic in late September. If you're walking down the road in the rain, someone will pull over and offer you a ride. You will learn everyone's name, and every single person you pass will raise his hand in a friendly "island wave." Try plucking an oyster out of the sound, or sailing out of the harbor past a family of seals, and perhaps you'll feel as we do: it's a very odd place, but we never want to leave.

Here’s a video, by Andrew Deutsch, that might give you an idea of what life here, and in The Lighthouse Works’ fellowship program, is like.


Before beginning the online application, please prepare your materials thoughtfully. Incomplete applications will be rejected unread. All applications must be submitted through the online application system.

Artist Information

The application form is very straightforward and involves some basic questions about you, your work, and your preferences. You may also upload your CV or resume, if you'd like.

Work Samples

Please submit your work samples by uploading media within the online application. For technical support, see the Help page on the SlideRoom application or contact For other issues or questions, please contact us.

Visual Arts

Please upload up to ten digital images of your artwork. The file size for each image cannot exceed 5 MB. Please, only one piece per image. Two of the ten images may be detail shots, installation views, or video, when appropriate. If you are a video artist, all ten files may be videos. Please do not include your name anywhere in the work sample files.

Note that we do not have extensive facilities or equipment for sculpture and fabrication, nor do we have a high-tech media lab. If you have questions about whether you could complete your work in The Lighthouse Works facilities, please contact us before applying.


Please submit a writing sample by uploading a PDF file in manuscript format in a 12-point legible font. Files cannot exceed 10 MB each. The title of the piece should appear on the top of each uploaded file, but your name should not appear anywhere in the file in order to keep our jury process anonymous.

Poets - 5-10 poems in a single PDF document (15 pages maximum).
Fiction Writers - No more than 15 pages, double-spaced
Nonfiction Writers - No more than 15 pages, double-spaced
Playwrights - No more than 15 pages.

Music Performance and Composition

Performers, please upload 6-12 audio files through the online application system. Audio files are limited to 30 MB in size. Please do not include video or use your name unless absolutely necessary in order to show your work.

Composers, please contact us for further instructions about audio recordings and scores.

Statement of Fellowship Intent

Please upload a Microsoft word (.doc) document or PDF file including a statement of 500 words or fewer. This is a chance to tell us about your work and how you would use the opportunity of a fellowship.


If you are chosen as a finalist for a Lighthouse Works fellowship, we'll email you to request the contact information of a reference who can speak to the quality of your creative work and to your character. It may be wise to make your reference aware that you may be calling on him or her.


We currently are not accepting applications.

The next call for applications will open September 1, 2015.

October 1, 2015



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