The Bellagio Experience
The Bellagio Residency program offers academics, artists, thought leaders, policymakers, and practitioners a serene setting conducive to focused, goal-oriented work, and the unparalleled opportunity to establish new connections with fellow residents from a stimulating array of disciplines and geographies. The Bellagio Center community generates new knowledge to solve some of the most complex issues facing our world and creates art that inspires reflection, understanding, and imagination.
Arts & Literary Arts Residencies are two to four weeks long. We are interested in applicants whose work is inspired by or relates to global or social issues. We also welcome applications for projects that will contribute to the Foundation's mission of promoting the well-being of humankind or in some way will connect with the Rockefeller Foundation’s issue areas. We strive to select a diverse cohort to ensure that interdisciplinary and international connections remain an integral part of the Bellagio experience. The Center welcomes collaborative residencies for two to four people working on the same project.
Collegial interaction with other residents is an essential dimension of the Bellagio experience. Meals and informal presentations of residents' work afford an opportunity for dynamic discussion and engagement within and across disciplines. During special dinners, residents often interact with participants in international conferences hosted in other buildings on the Center's grounds to help build connections and inform one another's work.
Selection Process and Criteria
The Selection Committee consists of an international panel chosen for their breadth of experience and knowledge of the arts and literary arts fields. The Committee members bring a wide array of perspectives in the arts and of global scope to nominate the most qualified applicants for a residency at the Bellagio Center. The Foundation seeks applications from outstanding creative artists at all career stages with a record of significant achievement in their field. The Foundation is specifically interested in artists and literary artists whose work is inspired by or relates to global or social issues. We also welcome applications for projects that share in the Foundation's work and mission of promoting the well-being of humankind. Applicants from developing countries are particularly encouraged to apply.
Selections are based on:
- how closely the art project compliments the Foundation's work and mission;
- the likelihood of the art project's impact within its field and/or on global and social issues;
- the quality of the proposed project;
- how innovative the project is;
- the ability of the applicant to articulate the project's purpose/meaning;
- the professional qualifications and achievements of the applicant; and
- the suitability of the Bellagio Center for the proposed activity.
In addition, reviewers will take into consideration:
- personal qualities that are likely to make an applicant a contributing member of an international, interdisciplinary community—curiosity, breadth of interests, ability to honor other viewpoints, and sensitivity to other cultures.
- since the Center aims to host an international mix of residents, the geography and nationality of those invited may be taken into account.
Facility and Travel Information
Residents are housed in two main buildings and each resident is given a private room with a bath and a study/studio, either adjoining the bedroom or on the grounds. High-speed Internet access is available free of charge in all bedrooms and most studies. A small library includes basic reference books and online research tools; the works of many former residents and those resulting from Bellagio meetings are also available. The visual artist studio is quite small, and not suited for large works or installations. There is no kiln or darkroom at the Center.
Spouses/life partners may accompany residents. Accommodations are not available for children, other family members, friends or pets. Room and board are provided to all residents and their spouses/partners, but they are responsible for their airfare and local transportation to and from Bellagio. However, the Foundation does have a limited travel assistance program, based on income level of invited residents.
Several resident suites are available for those with restricted mobility, and several of the buildings now include an elevator. Nonetheless, prospective applicants should be aware that the hillside setting of the facility and the surrounding area restricts the mobility of people who have difficulty walking or climbing stairs.
The Center is not equipped to provide medical services or assisted care. The nearest major hospital is in Lecco, a 40-minute drive away.