About Artist Residencies & How To Apply

A woman in a uniform shirt and hat photographing yellow flowers in the prairie.
Photographer Linda Staats at work in the prairie in 2008

Linda Staats

Herbert Hoover National Historic Site offers a residency of eight weeks during the months of June, July and August. The National Historic Site provides lodging and a secure place for equipment and supplies at no cost to the artist. During the residency, the artist interacts informally with the public, presents public interpretive programs, and contributes a piece or pieces of work for the site to utilize.

2019 Artist-in-Residence Program

Herbert Hoover National Historic Site is not yet accepting applications.


Selections will be made based on merit and how the artists' work can communicate the park's national significance and its relevance to park visitors.

Responsibilities & Duties

The Artist-in-Residence (AIR) will be enrolled in the Volunteer-in-Parks (VIP) program after reading and signing form OF-301A, Volunteer Services Agreement. The agreement will outline the artist's duties related to the goals of the residency. It may be terminated by either the AIR or the National Park Service at any time.

The artist works an average of 40 hours of work per week in the park or other approved locations. Days and hours of work will be worked out before the residency begins. The artist provides park staff notice each morning about his or her activities and likely whereabouts.

The artist is responsible for all supplies and materials needed for his or her artwork. Reimbursement may be available for some out of pocket expenses incurred during the residency.

Within three months after the residency, the AIR will complete and deliver the final products of the residency.

Within one year after the residency, the AIR will provide one public presentation in the artist's home community on the artist's experience and of the artwork produced as a result of the residency, along with some form of documentation to the park.

Lodging & Area Information

The artist will be lodged for free in one of the historic homes at Herbert Hoover National Historic Site. Water, electricity, and gas are included. Free parking is available either behind the houses or on the street. The house may not be accessible to persons with disabilities.

The house is furnished and air-conditioned. It has a telephone line for local calling. A washer and dryer are in the basement. The kitchen is fully equipped. The park will provide sheets, blankets, and towels. The AIR may want to bring an alarm clock, a fan, a light blanket and DVDs.

The house has exterior locks and an alarm system. If park staff needs to enter for maintenance work, they will contact you 24 hours ahead of time. In case of an emergency, park staff will contact you immediately before entering.

Churches, medical care, and groceries are available in West Branch (population 2,100). Iowa City (population 70,000) located 10 miles west, offers excellent medical care, cultural and recreational activities.

Working With The Public

The artist is encouraged to interact with park visitors as they interpret the variety of cultural and natural resources of the park, including its historic structures, artifacts, cultural landscape, creek, and tallgrass prairie.

Identifiable portraits of persons are not permitted without their written permission. The park will provide the artist with a model release form to obtain permission.

The artist will present at least one 60-minute public program during their residencies. The programs may suit the artists medium, interest, and experience, but must be approved by the AIR coordinator.

Artists must provide their own supplies and equipment for these presentations.

Studio Space, Storage, & Access

Aside from lodging, the park does not have a dedicated studio or storage space for artists. The AIR coordinator will work with the artist to find suitable places in the park to work and to store equipment and supplies.

The artist will be given a key and an alarm code only to his or her quarters. The AIR will not have access to the park's computer network.

The AIR may have access, with permission from the Chief Ranger, to public historic structures during park operating hours. He or she may work behind barriers if there is no apparent risk of damage to the structures and museum collection, and no safety hazard for visitors. Furnishings and museum objects may not be rearranged or touched without the permission of the Chief Ranger.

Access to the Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum, administered by the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), is excluded from this arrangement. The park or the artist may make additional arrangements with NARA as needed.

Last updated: October 25, 2018