Application Guidelines

Become a 2016 Saltonstall Fellow! Apply online by January 2.

We accept New York State writers and artists for residencies in the following categories:


  • Poetry
  • Fiction & Creative Nonfiction
  • Photography (film or digital) & Filmmaking
  • PSVA: Painting | Sculpture | Visual Arts


We are happy to announce that we are using Submittable again this year, an easy, online submission manager. If you are not already signed-up with Submittable, you will need to register for a free account. Submittable helps make the application process smooth and simple for you and for us.


We believe in and value a diverse community of creative individuals. To that end, we hope that all artists and writers feel welcome to apply for a residency, regardless of one’s level of education, experience, race, age, sex, religious belief, marital status, sexual orientation, gender, or national origin.


If you have applied in the past and have not been selected for a residency, don’t be discouraged! Our juries change yearly, so you have a legitimate chance every year. For example, this past season (2015), two of our visual arts Fellows, two poets, and one photographer had applied in the past and had not been awarded a residency until they re-applied this year.

Preparing your application material:


More detailed application instructions specific to each discipline are included within Submittable. However, in all cases, we ask for the following things:


Basic personal information and a preference regarding residency dates


A resume (not seen by the jury.) This can be any length and can be named whatever you’d like.


Contact information for 2 personal references (not seen by the jury.) Please note: we are not asking for letters of reference. Nothing should be mailed or emailed to us. We are simply asking for the contact information for 2 people who can act as personal references for you.


An artist’s or writer’s statement. For all disciplines, we ask for a 500 – 750 word statement about your work. Please keep this brief and specific to the work you are submitting.


Work samples and a file list (for visual artists.) This is the most important part of your application. Poets, we ask for 15 pages of work; fiction and nonfiction writers, we ask for 30 pages of work. Visual artists and photographers are asked to submit 10 images, and filmmakers are asked to submit 1-2 samples of their work, up to 5 min. in length. (Again, more detailed information is contained within Submittable.)


A $25 application fee, payable with a credit card or via PayPal


We convene a different jury for each discipline, and they change each year. Jurors serve anonymously. Your application is considered solely on the merit of your work sample and your artist’s and writer’s statement.

What does “blind” mean, and why is it important?


We are conducting a blind jurying process this year. This means that your application will be assigned a number by the Saltonstall office. Your work and statement are presented anonymously to the jury, and it is the only part of your application that they see. The jury will not know who you are. They will not see your name, your resume, or your references.


Because of this, it is very important that you do not identify yourself in any way within your statement or work samples.


Do not include information such as your name or your age. Do not “credential” yourself. Your statement should not mention where you went to school or where you’ve been published, exhibited, etc. Simply talk about the work that the jury is reviewing.

One month? Or two weeks?


Applicants may apply for either a month-long residency or a two-week residency (not both). Applicants may apply in more than one artistic or literary category, however a complete and separate application for each category is required.

Residency alumni:


Alumni of Saltonstalls residency program can now re-apply for a residency every other year. (i.e. 2014 Fellows are eligible to re-apply for a 2016 residency.)

Two absolute requirements


All applicants must be at least twenty-one (21) years of age. The residency program is open to legal residents of New York State (all counties). This means you must be living and working in the State of New York at the time of your application and at the time of your residency (if awarded.)


Applicants should seriously consider whether the quiet, communal, working environment of the colony suits their temperaments and work habits. The Foundation requires that those selected for residencies firmly commit to spending their awarded residency period at the colony.


We strongly encourage all applicants to apply on-line. Please call our office at 607-539-3146 if you are unable to apply on-line, and we will work to accommodate you.



Please visit our FAQs page for other commonly asked questions about our residency program.



** Click here ** to go to our Application page. Our Submittable portal is located there.


“Though I’ve been a resident of Ithaca for four years, it wasn’t until my time in Saltonstall that I was able to really reap its beauty. It was like discovering fresh soil–I wrote more than I wrote in an entire year, and the sacredness of that silence and solicitude helped me write without anything else weighing me down. Saltonstall was a marvelous gift.” – Sally Wen Mao, poet, Ithaca (2014)


“Saltonstall was a gift of focus and clarity; poems and bodies of work with which I was having trouble, I finally could make real progress. I could be a full-time poet, every day, reading, writing, rereading, rewriting. It was a deep, nourishing joy. Poetry is sustenance and Saltonstall allowed me to feast, to savor. Discoveries made at Saltonstall are ones I will carry with me for years to come.” – Chen Chen, poet, Syracuse (2014)


“I loved every minute of my experience at Saltonstall–I felt completely supported and nourished on all levels of experience. I am ever grateful.” – Susan D’Amato, visual artist, Syracuse (2014)


“This is such a treat and a refreshing contrast from the distractions of the concrete jungle of NYC. I am so focused and have gotten more work done on my film project in one week than I did in two months back home… I wish Saltonstall was my backyard!” – Betty Yu, filmmaker, Brooklyn (2015)