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Smithsonian American Art Museum Fellowship Program


November 1.

The Smithsonian American Art Museum and its Renwick Gallery invite applications for research fellowships in the art, craft, and visual culture of the United States. Fellowships are residential and support full-time independent and dissertation research. Recipients will be part of the oldest, largest, and premier residential fellowship program in American art. To learn more about the program, visit

The museum hosts fellows through the Smithsonian Institution Fellowship Program (SIFP), and also awards its own named fellowships to candidates from the SIFP pool. Only the one SIFP application is necessary. Applicants must identify a member of SAAM’s research staff to serve as primary advisor in order to be in residence at this museum. They are also encouraged to notify the potential advisor in advance of their application. Applicants to the Smithsonian Institution Fellowship Program who propose a SAAM primary advisor will automatically be considered for the museum’s named fellowships:

  • The Will Barnet Foundation Fellowship funds a full year of research on topics related to American modern art, including its influence on later generations.
  • The Joe and Wanda Corn Fellowship is endowed by their former students Mike Wilkins and Sheila Duignan and supports scholars whose research interests span American art and American history. The recipient will be jointly appointed at SAAM and the National Museum of American History and will draw on the resources of both museums.
  • The Douglass Foundation Fellowship in American Art supports a full year of predoctoral research in American art.
  • The Patricia and Phillip Frost Fellowship is offered to support research in American art and visual culture.
  • The George Gurney Fellowship funds a six-month research appointment in American sculpture in honor of the distinguished career of SAAM’s former curator of sculpture. Residencies should take place June–December or January–August. 
  • The Joshua C. Taylor Fellowship is intermittently awarded and supported by alumni and friends in memory of the museum’s former director and founder of the fellowship program. 
  • The Terra Foundation Fellowships in American Art foster international research on American art and visual culture prior to 1980 that relates to the collections of the Smithsonian Institution. Fellowships of three to twelve months are available at the predoctoral, postdoctoral, and senior levels to scholars from abroad who are researching American art or to US scholars with an exceptionally strong international component to their study. Distinguished recipients at the senior level are eligible for an augmented stipend of $60,000 for a twelve-month appointment.
  • The William H. Truettner Fellowship supports six months of research in recognition of Mr. Truettner’s career of nearly fifty years as a curator of painting and sculpture at SAAM. Residencies should take place June–December or January–August. 
  • The Windgate Foundation supports a yearlong fellowship for the study of American craft.
  • The Wyeth Foundation Predoctoral Fellowship is awarded for the advancement and completion of a doctoral dissertation that concerns the study, appreciation, and recognition of excellence in all aspects of American art.

PhD candidates, postdoctoral researchers, and senior scholars from any field who are pursuing research on American art are eligible to apply.


3–12 months

Fellowship Category Stipend Research Allowance

Senior Fellowships
- for scholars at least seven years beyond the Ph.D.

$55,000 per year* up to $4,000 per year

Postdoctoral Fellowships
- for scholars up to seven years beyond the Ph.D.*

$55,000 per year up to $4,000 per year

Predoctoral Fellowships
- for doctoral candidates to conduct dissertation research.

$40,000 per year up to $4,000 per year

Stipends are prorated for periods of less than twelve months. Additional allowances will be provided to help with temporary relocation to the Smithsonian and the cost of health insurance. Senior-level recipients of the Terra Foundation Fellowships are eligible for an augmented stipend of $60,000 for the full year. 

* Senior-level recipients of the Terra Foundation Fellowships are eligible for an augmented stipend of $60,000 for the full year.


Amelia Goerlitz, Chair of Academic Programs
Telephone (202) 633-8353


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