The Fabric Workshop and Museum (FWM) invites students, postgraduates, and emerging artists from the U.S. and abroad to apply to the College/Postgraduate Apprentice Training Program (ATP). The ATP is a holistic experience enabling artists to develop skills in screenprinting large-scale repeat patterns on fabric to enhance their studio practice. Apprentices will also participate in the daily studio and museum operations, supporting FWM’s mission of stimulating experimentation and collaboration among leading contemporary artists and sharing the process of creating works of art with the public.
Apprentices have the unique opportunity to learn how to create a repeat pattern design by hand on mylar, mix custom water-soluble textile ink, register multiple layers, and screenprint their own designs including a four yard, one-color and eight yard, three-color repeat design on fabric. Each step of the process is expertly guided with the support of the FWM Apprentice Coordinator. Additionally, Apprentices will assist with projects related to education and public programming, visitor services, studio production, and the FWM archives. Apprentices present a short lecture on their work, and visit local cultural organizations.
This program is specifically designed for emerging artists with a solid studio practice who are interested in benefiting from the unique ethos of a museum with active Artists-in-Residence and a collaborative atmosphere focused on developing craftsmanship and conceptualism. As opposed to a technical program designed for careers in the textile industry, the ATP is focused on enabling artists to develop skills in screenprinting on fabric and find ways of integrating fabric into their artmaking.
Over the years, FWM has welcomed a diverse range of candidates working within a wide range of media. Apprentices have come to FWM from nearly every state in the U.S., as well as from China, Denmark, England, Finland, France, Germany, Ghana, India, Japan, Kenya, Scotland, and South Korea.
Sign up for our mailing list for program updates and information about upcoming Apprentice Alumni Artist Talks; check out our events page for other ways to stay connected. Please reach out to [email protected] with any questions.
Session Dates & Application Deadlines
Spring 2023 Session
January 11–March 31, 2023
Summer 2023 Session
May 24–August 14, 2023
Final Application Deadline: January 15, 2023
Tiered Application Fee System:
$15.00—Tier 1 applications available: November 1–January 1, 11:59 EST
$25.00—Tier 2 applications available: January 2–January 8, 11:59 pm EST
$35.00—Tier 3 applications available: January 9–January 15, 11:59 PM EST
Fall 2023 Session
September 20–December 15, 2023
Final Application Deadline: April 15, 2023
Tiered Application Fee System:
$15.00—Tier 1 applications available: February 1–April 1, 11:59 EST
$25.00—Tier 2 applications available: April 2–April 8, 11:59 pm EST
$35.00—Tier 3 applications available: April 9–April 15, 11:59 PM EST
As of March 2022, we now accept two professional references. Letters of recommendation are no longer required.
- Completed application questionnaire
a. How did you hear about The Fabric Workshop and Museum? (250 word max)
b. Why would you like to participate in The Fabric Workshop and Museum’s Apprentice Training Program? How will an apprenticeship affect your career goals and enhance your artistic practice? (500 word max)
c. Artist Statement (500 word max)
- 20 work samples (label files: “last name-file number”, ex: Parker-01; images and video under 2MB and attached as .jpg, .tiff, or .pdf; videos attached as .avi or .mov)
a. For large video/audio files please create a PDF file (one for each piece) that includes a video still and hyperlink to your vimeo, dropbox, etc.
- Reference list with file number, title, date, size, media, and, where applicable, conceptual intent (attached as .pdf or .doc)
- CV or Resume (attached as .pdf or .doc)
- Two (2) Professional References, must provide: Name, title, phone number, and email address.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the costs of the program?
There is a $175 studio fee to cover the costs of materials.
Is it a paid position?
The college/postgrad apprenticeship is unpaid.
What is the time commitment?
The time commitment is two days a week during Museum hours, Wednesday–Friday 10:00 am–6:00 pm. There is regularly scheduled “homework” to be completed independently by the Apprentice.
Do you have housing for nonlocal apprentices?
Apprentices must find their own accommodations.
How many apprentices are in the program at a time?
There are 4–5 apprentices during each session of the program.
If I am not a recent art school graduate, am I still eligible for the program?
You can apply even if you’ve been out of school for some time, as long as you are an emerging artist actively pursuing your career and can show a portfolio of recent work.
Do I need to have a college education in order to apply?
You do not need to have a college education as long as you have a strong portfolio.
If I am a commercial designer, would I be a good fit?
Because FWM’s mission supports contemporary art and artists, the applicants that we select are commonly focused on applying screenprinting and textiles to their own studio practice while gaining professional museum experience. The hand screenprinting process that FWM teaches isn’t necessarily applicable to commercial design work today.
How long will it be before I hear back about my application?
Typically, we are able to follow up with applicants regarding their status about 4 weeks after the application deadline.
What do you take into consideration when reviewing applications?
As we accept a small cohort of 4–5 apprentices, we want to make sure that the group will work together holistically and collaboratively. Balancing different mediums, backgrounds and experience levels. It is not required for applicants to have experience in screenprinting or fibers. The apprenticeship is not an artist residency. Applicants who do not know how to screenprint repeat patterns on fabric are preferred.
Why the tiered rate application system?
We’d like to make applying to the Apprentice Training Program more financially accessible. All applications in tiers 1–3 will be reviewed in the same pool for that term. There is no preference related to the date the application is received.
Questions? Please contact [email protected] or call 215.561.8888.