Engine seeks a Festival Artist in Residence (FAiR) to create deep engagement through art, connecting the Biddeford community together by inviting community members to participate in the creative process.

During the residency, the FAiR will facilitate relationships and inspire deeper levels of engagement and connection. Our community will receive the tools to continue this work post-residence.

The FAiR will be asked to achieve two important objectives for community engagement: 1) to create opportunities for interaction and collaboration that are communal, visible and evocative, and 2) to leverage the connections we share with one another, our experiences with the past and present, and our desires for a better future as a springboard for enacting change.

Process, not Product. While the end product is important and should be a tangible thing, the engagement and art-making process are equally important. This residency is for artists who are passionate about investigating how intentional, meaningful relationships with communities create positive change, thought, and action.

Proposals. Proposals should clearly illustrate how the artists’ creative practice will create sustainable, visible impact. Artists should expect and embrace that their original idea may evolve based on interaction and collaboration with the community. The impact may vary from the artist’s original intent.

Artistic Expertise: Artists may utilize the following artistic expertise and skill as tools: Visual (painting, printmaking, photography, illustration, collage, animation, sculpture, graphic design, etc.) Literary (poetry, speculative fiction) Performance (installation, dance, theater, spoken word, sound design, music production, experimental music, etc.) New Media (video, interactive design, gaming, etc.) Environmental (architecture, environmental design, urban permaculture, sustainable urban farming, etc.) 

Proposals should: 

  • Describe a project that promotes art as a vehicle for addressing the socio-economic conditions specific to our underserved neighborhoods in the Biddeford area.
  • Emphasize both process and product. Allows room for discovery and project development based on relationship building and community-based experiences occurring during the residency.
  • Challenge the image of the “individual artist” by focusing on collective work, where community members and youth are engaged as equal partners. Inspire curiosity and critical thinking.

ELIGIBILITY: Our FAiR residency is open to artists or artist collectives that meet all of the following criteria: 

  • Is at least 21 years of age.
  • Can provide examples of past work.  
  • Have worked on collaborative, community-based projects within the last five years.


Please provide the following via email to Physical hard copy proposals will not be returned.

Timeline: Proposals must be received by 11:59PM July 1, 2021.

Project Proposal Summary (PDF please, 1000 words maximum): Describe the proposed project. Describe media and materials. Explain how collaborative engagement with community will be addressed, and intended impact. Use clear and direct language. 

Work Samples:

  1. Proposals must be accompanied by a minimum of 5, maximum of 10 electronic samples illustrating the artist’s previous work. No physical work samples will be accepted. 
  2. Videos must be submitted as links and must be no longer than 2 minutes; excerpt is acceptable. 
  3. Images must be submitted individually, as jpegs (no larger than 5MB, each). 
  4. Website links are recommended as an additional and do not substitute for required work samples.
  5. Written work must be submitted as a PDF, no more than 5 pages each; an excerpt is acceptable. 
  6. Audio files must be submitted as links, no longer than 2 minutes. 
  7. Resume/ Curriculum Vita/ Previous Exhibition List: Maximum 3 pages per artist / each member of the collective. 

Selection: Artist or art collective will be selected by committee. The FAiR candidates will be required to have experience having facilitated public engagement and place-making/keeping projects. Shortlisted candidates will be presented to the community, in a public meeting format, which will make the ultimate decision on who is appointed FAiR. The goal of such a communal selection process is to ensure the shared passion and excitement for the in-depth work required of the FAiR.

Proposed Project Schedule. The residency will begin on or around August 1, 2021 and culminate at the 2021 Fringe Fest & River Jam Fest on August 20 and 21. Depending on the location of selected artist, work may begin earlier.

This project is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts. To find out more about how National Endowment for the Arts grants impact individuals and communities, visit