St. Roch Community Church believes that thriving communities participate in and benefit from creativity, expression and self-reflection. The arts are a major conduit for these types of values, and art-making is a practice deserving plenty of time for exploration, revision, and access to audiences. We believe that the best art is made by well-supported artists. As a church body and as members of this neighborhood and art community, we see evidence of God's creativity and generosity scattered amply throughout our lives. We delight in extending generous time and welcome to dedicated emerging artists. By offering nine months of space and support for a resident to invest in their practice, we find artists can deepen the quality and impact of their work in significant ways. Since we were founded in 2008 due in large part to the vision of our director, Aaron Collier*, we have hosted 10 resident artists from a variety of backgrounds; each person has been a unique and valued member of the community during their time here.
St. Roch is a body of committed, humble Christians; our artists have come from both practicing as well as church-adjacent or skeptical backgrounds. We are truly interested in knowing why and how interaction with a church is compelling to the resident, and welcome a variety of perspectives.Rather than offer a model of withdrawal and short-term or project-oriented productivity, we envision a space in which the artist has copious amounts of time to research and develop a significant body of work as they pursue a professional calling in the arts. In the heart of New Orleans and in the midst of the complexity of a gentrifying neighborhood, we provide a combined live/work studio space located on the same property as the church building, office building, and youth resources building (it's like a little corner of a city block, a hive of varied activities unfolding daily). Other than the space, we offer a modest monthly stipend to cover the costs of supplies and daily necessities, a welcoming community and connections across the city and the art scene, and an end-of-residency exhibition. The residency is designed to immerse the artist within our thriving, hospitable congregation and neighborhood.For images of the residency, and links to prior residents’ websites, please follow this link.