Oscar Howe Curatorial Fellowship

The Oscar Howe Curatorial Fellowship is a semester-long project for American Indian students currently enrolled at USD who are interested in learning how to curate Native American art exhibitions. Each spring, two fellows will be selected to produce a professional, museum-quality exhibition utilizing the Oscar Howe permanent art collection. The fellowships include opportunities to travel, research and learn more about exhibition curation under the direct guidance of the University Art Galleries' staff, Native arts curators throughout the United States, and the Oscar Howe Curatorial Fellowship selection committee. Fellows receive stipends of $3,000 each and will be expected to work 10–15 hours per week during the spring semester on the creation of an exhibition. The exhibitions will be displayed in the Oscar Howe Gallery, located in historic Old Main, during the following fall semester.

Eligible applicants will be enrolled at USD during the fellowship semester and must be a registered member of a tribe in the United States. Students from any major or minor concentration are encouraged to apply. Two students will be selected to participate in the fellowships.

For more information, please contact: 

Michelle St. Vrain
Director - University Art Galleries


Northern Plains Indian Art Residency

See the NPIAR brochure for more information.

The Contemporary Native Arts Program (CNAP) at USD seeks applicants for the first Northern Plains Indian Artist Residency (NPIAR). Artists who are registered members of a tribe in the Northern Plains region are eligible to apply for the residency. The artist-in-residence will spend the entire month of June living and working at USD, located on the banks of the Missouri River in Vermillion, South Dakota. The artist will be expected to work on a new or ongoing visual arts project. 

This prestigious artist residency includes a generous stipend package, including a general living stipend of $3,000, a materials stipend of $3,000 and a technology stipend of $3,000. All food and lodging is covered by the CNAP program for the artist's four week stay. The artist will use the USD art department facilities to work toward the completion of their visual art project. The goals of the CNAP program at USD is to support Native artists from the upper Midwest, including those interested in combining traditional native arts practices with new media approaches, technology-based methods, or artists wishing to broaden the distribution of their art using technology and/or social media. The purpose of the Northern Plains Indian Artist residency is to encourage Native artists to access and use technologies for the preservation, dissemination and enhancement of their artistic work. The CNAP program also encourages emerging and mid-career American Indian artists from the upper Midwest to recognize their audiences  and develop a career path that is successful according to their own assessment of artist purpose and well-being. The residency will offer guidance on how to develop career plans and trajectories in either commercial or nonprofit sectors.

To apply and learn more about the residency, view the application form.  Completed applications should be sent to:

Michelle St. Vrain, NPIA Residency Committee
University Art Galleries
414 East Clark St.
Vermillion, SD 57069

NPIA Residency operates under two assumptions:

  • Many Native artists learn to work in media such as painting, drawing, ceramics, and photography at art programs throughout the United States, but few receive training and exposure to traditional Native art practices at many schools.
  • Emerging and mid-career Native artists desire more guidance to develop a career plan in tourist art markets and/or nonprofit art sectors

The Northern Plains Indian Artist-in-Residence will be selected by a review and selection committee that will change every year.