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The MacDowell Colony


The MacDowell Colony is the leading artist residency program in the U.S., annually providing Fellowships to 250 creative artists of all disciplines. Artists are given time and space to make art, resulting in a remarkable collective contribution to American culture. “The best things in life are not things but transformative ideas and emotions – the very currency of art and the amazing output of this colony," according to filmmaker and MacDowell board member Ken Burns.


To promote the arts and increase appreciation of the arts as a national value by offering creative individuals of the highest talent time, space, and an inspiring environment in which they can produce enduring works of imagination.


Founded by composer Edward MacDowell and Marian MacDowell, his wife, the Colony celebrates 100 Years of Giving Artists the Freedom to Create in 2007. Artists testify that a MacDowell residency has a profound impact on the substance, breadth, and direction of their work, enabling them to think, experiment, and collaborate with other artists. For many emerging artists, the Colony provides an atmosphere of encouragement and professional acceptance. More than 6,000 writers, visual artists, composers, filmmakers, architects, and interdisciplinary artists have enjoyed the vital elements of a MacDowell Fellowship: a private studio, room and board, and a dynamic community of fellow artists working in all disciplines. Fellowships are awarded solely on the basis of talent, as determined by rotating panels of experts in each discipline, who review over 1,700 applications a year. MacDowell’s 32 separate studio buildings, located on 450 acres in Peterborough, New Hampshire, are regarded as among the best in the field. Many artists participate in MacDowell’s outreach programs, which bring the creativity and energy of the Colony to hundreds of children and adults annually. The MacDowell Colony is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, tax-exempt organization that relies on contributions to operate its residency program. Artists do not pay residency fees.


Works inspired, conceived and created at MacDowell go on to be published, exhibited, and performed around the world, touching the lives of countless people. Colony Fellows have won 67 Pulitzer Prizes, 10 MacArthur Foundation Awards, and scores of Rome Prizes, National Book, Sundance and Academy Awards, among their distinguished honors. Colony Fellows have become pivotal figures in American culture, including James Baldwin, Leonard Bernstein, Willa Cather, Aaron Copland, and Thornton Wilder. Recent Fellows include Jonathan Franzen, Alice Sebold, and Alice Walker. The Colony was awarded the National Medal of Arts "for nurturing and inspiring many of this century’s finest artists."


United States


100 High Street

Peterborough, NH 03458

Phone: (603) 924-3886

EIN: 13-1592242

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