Critical Writing Fellowship

 

Eyebeam and Momus Critical Writing Fellowship (2022-23)

Call for Applications

Momus and Eyebeam are now accepting applications for the second iteration of their Critical Writing Fellowship. This paid opportunity provides sustained mentorship, editorial support, and network-building to an early-career art writer or critic. Over an 8-month period of research, dialogue, and drafting, the Fellow will produce a feature-length text to be published in Momus. Two Shortlisted Fellows will also be commissioned to produce text for publication in Momus.

This year, the mentorship will be overseen by the critic and writer Rahel Aima, who reflects on working with emerging critics as being “the most rewarding part of what I do.” She continues, “I am very excited to be a mentor with Eyebeam and Momus, two organizations with a longstanding—and demonstrable—commitment to supporting emerging critics and broadening access to the arts.”

Through this bridge-building collaboration, Eyebeam and Momus are able to support new art writers while pursuing their shared objectives of extending artistic knowledge, increasing access to art publishing, enabling sustained mentorship, and reading our cultural text more deeply. 

Program Details

Ideal Candidate: An early-career art writer / critic with some publishing experience, the desire to be edited and evolve, and a clear voice. We will be giving preference to those writing from a decentered or historically marginalized position. 

Honorarium: $4,000 USD for an 8-month fellowship. 

Time Commitment: The Fellow is expected to spend a minimum of 5 hours per week on their writing and research, and in communication with their Mentor and the Momus editorial advisors. The Mentor will have up to three hours a week available for working with the Fellow, in the form of reading, editing, and communication. 

Shortlisted Fellows: Two Shortlisted Fellows will be commissioned to write a long form piece for publication in Momus, with the guidance of the Momus editorial team.

Mentor Bio: Rahel Aima is a critic and writer from Dubai. She is editor of BXD: The Postwestern Review, an associate editor at Momus, and was the founding co-editor of THE STATE. Her writing has appeared in 4 Columns, Artforum, Art Agenda, Art in America, Artnet, ArtReview, The Atlantic, Bidoun, Bookforum, frieze, Garage, Harper’s Bazaar Art Arabia, Mousse, The Nation, New Republic, and Vogue Arabia, among many others, and she regularly contributes exhibition texts, catalogue essays and book chapters. Aima was a recipient of the 2018 Creative Capital Arts Writers grant. Her current research focuses on climate, terroir, and urban infrastructure, and she is at work on a collection of essays about where oil meets water in the Arabian Gulf and how we became postwestern.

Adjudication: Applications will be adjudicated by Rahel Aima and Arushi Vats, the 2021-22 Critical Writing Fellow, along with Lauren Wetmore, Associate Director of Programs, and Sky Goodden, founding publisher of Momus.

Application Instructions

Please send your application as a single PDF to residency@momus.ca by Sunday December 18, midnight EST. The application should contain the following:

  1. A 1-page letter of intent describing why you are applying for the fellowship and the area of interest you would seek to engage in through the fellowship.
  2. A C.V. (no more than three pages long)
  3. One published writing sample with the option of including a second writing sample (option for second sample to be unpublished). 

Equity and Inclusion Commitment

Eyebeam and Momus aim to create a hub for conversation and practice-sharing that is aware and responsive to systemic inequities and invests in the meaningful inclusion of historically-marginalized groups and voices. Both organizations are committed to and value diversity in their programming, as defined by gender, race, ethnicity, disability-status, age, sexual orientation, immigrant status, and socioeconomic status. With a history rooted in innovation and collaboration Eyebeam and Momus’s programs and publishing are grounded in artist-community dialogue and support meaningful access to technology for everyone.

Eyebeam and Momus’s programs aim to prioritize support for the following communities by prioritizing their involvement: Black artists, Disabled artists, People of Color, and Indigenous artists. Please share how your experience and goals engage one or more of these communities when you apply.

Inaugural Critical Writing Fellowship (2021-22)

Arushi Vats, 2021; Eugene Yiu Nam Cheung (image credit: Agustín Farias); Simon Wu (image credit: Thomas Blair).

Critical Writing Fellow 2021-22

The inaugural Critical Writing Fellowship is awarded to Arushi Vats, a Delhi-based arts, literary, and culture writer who participated in the Momus Emerging Critics Residency (August 9-20), followed by an 8-month writing incubation period and sustained mentorship with writer and critic Nora N. Khan. Her text in Momus is forthcoming this fall. Vats has also been in deep engagement with the Democracy Machine at Eyebeam, which seeks to upend traditional artist-support models by handing full authority to artists to self-generate new branches of connectivity and creating new forms of equitable support.

Inaugural Critical Writing Fellow: Arushi Vats

Arushi Vats is a New Delhi-based arts, literary, and culture writer. From a highly competitive applicant pool, Vats astounded us with the clarity of her vision, the strength of her early publishing experience (including platforms such as MARCH: a journal of art & strategy, Alternative South Asia Photography, The Karachi Collective, and Critical Collective), and the depth of her resonance with Nora N. Khan’s practice. Further, Vats’s ambition to write on art “as a site for both lyrical affinities and radical challenges” aligned meaningfully with the goals of the Fractal Fellowship at Eyebeam.

In addition to publishing in cultural venues including LSE International History and Write | Art | Connect, Vats has published short stories and poetry in The Gulmohar Quarterly, Hakara Journal, and PIX Quarterly. She has also authored several curatorial essays, including for a volume titled The Constitution of India at 70: Celebrate, Illuminate, Rejuvenate, Defend, published by Safdar Hashmi Memorial Trust in 2021. Vats was featured on Momus: The Podcast (Season 5, Episode 6) reading from and discussing Exit the Rehearsal: A Body in Delhi, published by Runway Journal.  

Inaugural Mentor: Nora N. Khan

Nora N. Khan is a critic, curator, and Executive Director of Project X Foundation for Art & Criticism. Her research focuses on experimental art and music practices that make arguments through software, machine learning, and artificial intelligence. Her two short books are Seeing, Naming, Knowing (The Brooklyn Rail, 2019) and, with Steven Warwick, Fear Indexing the X-Files (Primary Information, 2017). Forthcoming this year are The Artificial and the Real (Art Metropole) and AI Art and the Stakes for Art Criticism (Lund Humphries). Khan publishes criticism and essays frequently in publications like Art in America, Artforum, Flash Art, and California Sunday, and has written commissioned essays and monographs for exhibitions at Serpentine Galleries, Chisenhale, the Venice Biennale, Centre Pompidou, Swiss Institute, and Kunstverein in Hamburg.

Khan’s research, writing, and curatorial practice extends to a large range of artistic collaborations, which include librettos, performances, and exhibition essays, scripts, and a tiny house. In 2020, as The Shed’s first guest curator, she organized the exhibition Manual Override, which saw 30,000 visitors in two months, and was covered in Vogue, 4Columns, and The New York Times. You can read more about her work here.

Inaugural Shortlisted Fellows: Simon Wu and Eugene Yiu Nam Cheung

We were overwhelmed with compelling submissions to the inaugural Momus / Eyebeam Critical Writing Fellowship, and are delighted to announce that Eyebeam is supporting Momus in commissioning two shortlisted candidates, who will publish feature articles with us in 2022. Simon Wu is a writer and curator based in Brooklyn and Philadelphia. . His writing has appeared in publications including Art in America, BOMB, The Drift, frieze, and Momus. He is an alum of the Whitney Independent Study Program and a curator with the Racial Imaginary Institute. He is a 2021 grantee of the Andy Warhol Foundation Arts Writers Grant.

Eugene Yiu Nam Cheung is a writer based in Berlin, and founding editor of institutional critique platform Decolonial Hacker. He studied art history, gender studies and law at the University of Sydney, and is currently the curatorial assistant at the Julia Stoschek Collection, Berlin. In 2021, he was awarded the International Award for Art Criticism.

 

 

About Momus

Momus is an international online art publication and podcast that centers slow looking and brave positioning in art criticism and art writing. Since 2014, Momus has become a trusted reference for those wishing to reflect on contemporary art with greater focus than online platforms typically allow. Momus regularly hosts mentorship opportunities for emerging art writers, editors, and publishers. For more information please visit our About page.

About Eyebeam

Established in the Chelsea district of Manhattan in 1998, Eyebeam was founded as a resource for artists to engage creatively with technology in a setting that encouraged experimentation. Today, they continue to be a resource for artists and technologists alike as technology’s effect on society grows increasingly complex and problematic. In all of their work, they strive to amplify artists’ ideas that carve a path towards a more just future. Since 2001, the core of Eyebeam’s programming has been their Residency, which evolved into a digital-first Fellowship in the last year. Every year they provide professional guidance, studio space, expert advice, and a significant cash award for up to 30 artists whose practices engage with the most pressing issues of our time. Unlike other fellowships, Eyebeam encourages inquiry-based practices through which artists can experiment and initiate critical dialogues with one another that are centered around technology’s effect on society. By supporting a multiplicity of artists responsive to systems of oppression, Eyebeam includes narratives that better reflect the existing plurality of genders, races, ethnicities, abilities, ages, sexual orientations, citizenships, and socioeconomic statuses in support of an expansively inclusive vision of a better future. Read more here.