Fellowship Program


Application for Kala’s 2023-2024 Fellowship and Special Program Award is open online at kala.slideroom.com! The deadline to apply is Wednesday, March 15 at 9:00PM, PDT.

The Kala Art Institute Fellowship is an artist residency award for local, national, and international artists. Artists producing innovative work in mediums including printmaking, digital media, installation art, social practice, photography, and book arts are encouraged to apply. Fellowship Awards will be given based on conceptual creativity, originality and artistic excellence.

The 2023/24 Fellowship competition will be chaired by Kala’s Artist Residency Manager Leyla Rzayeva. The jury is made up of Kala’s Artistic Director Mayumi Hamanaka, MoAD Interim Director of Exhibitions & Curatorial Affairs Selam Bekele, and Fellowship alumni artist Alisa Ochoa. In 2023, Kala will award six artists a $3,000 stipend, unlimited access to Kala’s facilities for up to nine months, one Kala class, and a culminating show in the Kala Gallery. The award is geared towards supporting artists in completing specific projects or bodies of work that would benefit from Kala’s specialized equipment in printmaking and digital media.

New this year we have funding for one of the six Fellowships to be designated for a veteran artist with support from Sustainable Arts Foundation (one who has served in the US armed forces), and one of the six Fellowships is designated for a parent artist (with a child under 18 at home). In addition, we have several additional parent artist residencies  that will be awarded during this application process (more info under Special Programs). If you are eligible for these opportunities, please note your interest in the parent artist fellowship and additional awards on Question 13 and your interest in the veterans artist fellowship on Question 14.

2022-2023 Fellowship Artists:
Khadijah Morley (Toronto, Ontario, Canada)
Sungjae Lee (Chicago, IL) – Instagram: @thony0806
Jessica Mehta (Hillsboro, OR) A special thanks to Sustainable Arts Foundation for supporting this Parent Artist. 
Rayelle Gardner (East Elmhurst, NY)
Paola de la Calle (San Francisco, CA ) – Instagram: @paoladelacalle
Lani Asuncion (Boston, MA ) – Instagram: @lani.asuncion

Honorary AIR Awardees:
Jenny Lin & Eloisa Aquino (Montreal, Quebec, Canada)

The 2022-2023 Fellowship competition was selected by Kala’s Artistic Director Mayumi Hamanaka and two guest jurors: Fellowship alumni artist Natani Notah and invited Bay Area arts professional, Kim Acebo Arteche, Co-Director at Berkeley Art Center.

2021-2022 Fellowship Artists:
Ting Ying Han (Los Angeles, CA)
Sahand Heshmati Afshar (Chicago, IL)
Alisa Ochoa (Costa Mesa, CA) A special thanks to Sustainable Arts Foundation for supporting this Parent Artist. 
Mariana Ramos Ortiz (Cabo Rojo, Puerto Rico) – Instagram: @la.habicuela
Ron Moultrie Saunders (San Francisco, CA )
Lena Wolff (Berkeley, CA ) – Instagram: @lenawolffstudio

Honorary AIR Awardees:
Ann Johnson (Houston, TX) – Instagram: @solesisterart
Pamela Ybanez (Oakland, CA)

The 2021-2022 Fellowship competition was selected by Kala’s Artistic Director Mayumi Hamanaka and two guest jurors: Print Public alumni artist Imin Yeh and Bamidele Agbasegbi Demerson, Chief Curator at the African American Museum and Library in Oakland.

2020-2021 Fellowship Artists:
Anthea Black (Oakland, CA)
Tavarus Blackmon (Sacramento, CA)
Elnaz Javani (Chicago, IL)
Natani Notah (Alameda, CA)
Jessica Sabogal (Oakland, CA ) and Shanna Strauss (Montreal, QC)
tamara suarez porras (Berkeley, CA )

Honorary AIR Awardees:
Sydney Cain (San Francisco, CA)
Adia Millett (Oakland, CA)
Nasim Moghadam (Palo Alto, CA)
Stuart Robertson (Stanford, CA )
courtney m sennish (Emeryville, CA )

2020-2021 Media AIR Awardees:
Alexa Burrell (Bay Area, CA)
Pegah Pasalar (Chicago, IL)
Naomi van Niekerk (South Africa)

The 2020-2021 Fellowship competition was juried by Kala’s Executive Director, Gallery Director and Artist Residency Manager, and a panel that included Media Award alumni artist Veronica Graham, and one invited Bay Area arts professional, Jovanna Venegas, Assistant Curator of Contemporary Art SFMOMA.

2019-2020 Fellowship Artists:
Pavel Acevedo (San Francisco, CA)
Jonathan Herrera Soto (Minneapolis, MN)
Pascaline Knight (Montréal, QC)
Sara Press (Sebastopol, CA )
Aay Preston-Myint (Oakland, CA )

Honorary AIR Awardees:

Michael Koehle ( Oakland, CA)
Jessica Sabogal (Berkeley, CA)
Gabriela Yoque (Oakland, CA)

The 2019 Fellowship competition was juried by Kala’s Artistic Director  and Gallery Director, and a panel that included Fellowship alumni artist Golbanou Moghaddas, and one invited Bay Area arts professional, Rhonda Pagnozzi, Curatorial Assistant, Oakland Museum of California.   

2018-2019 Fellowship Artists:
Dahn Gim (Los Angeles, CA)
Malisa Humphrey (Los Angeles, CA)
Yen-Hua Lee (Taichung City, Taiwan R.O.C.)
Mary V Marsh (Oakland , CA)
Keith Secola (Berkeley, CA)

Honorary AIR Awardees:

Cynthia Brannvall (Berkeley, CA)
Phillip Hua (San Francisco, CA)
Jennifer Justice (Alameda, CA)

The 2018 Fellowship competition was  juried by Kala’s Artistic Director and a panel that included one Fellowship alumni artist, Leah Rosenberg and one invited Bay Area arts professional, Cecile Puretz, Access & Community Engagement Manager of The Contemporary Jewish Museum.  

2017-2018 Honorary AIR Awardees:

Myles Dunigan (Lawrence, KS)
Casey Gardner (Berkeley, CA)
Joyce Ertel Hulbert (Berkeley, CA)
Anais Lera (Brussels, Belgium)
Cathy Lu (San Francisco, CA)

Our jurors in 2017 were Jamil Hellu, Alumni Fellowship Artist and Sage Perrott, arts professional and Adjunct Professor at Utah State University.

2016-2017 Honorary AIR Awardees:

Julia Goodman, Oakland, CA
Tom GreyEyes, Oakland, CA
Galen Jackson, Berkeley, CA

Our jurors in 2016 were Terry Berlier, Alumni Fellowship Artist and Cathy Kimball, Executive Director and Chief Curator, San Jose Institute of Contemporary Art.