San Miguel Art Residency

The Program


This one-month residency is designed for emerging to mid-career artists of all nationalities to advance their work in an immersive private studio environment while engaging in the vibrant cultural interchange of San Miguel de Allende and nearby cities. We provide experiences through visits to cultural sites and museums in a range of different cities including Guanajuato Capital, Mexico City and Teotihuacan.

The San Miguel Art Residency is an opportunity for each individual artist to design their experience depending on their interest. This program provides trips to and experiences at sites of interest (as mentioned above), as well as workshops, lectures and artist talks. Our aim is to create a space for dialogue between artists of different disciplines and cultural backgrounds with an interest in drawing, painting, arts & crafts-makings, textiles, writing, photography, experimental art, digital design, sculpture, installation and performance.

To see more information about excursions, workshops, lectures, and artist talks included in the program and things to do around San Miguel de Allende, click here.

If you have any questions about the program, application process, or travel and housing arrangements, please write us an email at

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Apply (Yourself)



Application opens: February 10th, 2019

Application deadline: May 30th, 2019

The total cost of this residency is $2,500 U.S. dollars, but there are scholarship opportunities available.

Applicants will be notified starting May 1st via email. After this date, applications will be accepted on a rolling basis until May 30th. Acceptances are based on a review of the application and portfolio by a committee.

Scholarship: All applicants are eligible for scholarship consideration. For more information, please email

Applicants must be at least 18 years of age at the start of the program.

* If you are interested in being considered for a scholarship, please specify it in your statement of intent.

application instructions:

Send the following materials to

  1. Statement of intent - a letter introducing yourself and your practice, what you hope to achieve during your stay here and what medium you will be working in.

  2. CV

  3. Five (5) samples of your work (use file extensions gif, jpg, mpg, png).

  4. Link to your artist website or any work on Vimeo, SoundCloud, YouTube, or other digital platform.

Applicants who are accepted are required to make a $500 USD deposit to secure their place before June 1st via PayPal.

What’s included?

  • Private room with bedding

  • Private studio space

  • Transportation to field trips (as mentioned above)

  • Artist Talks

  • Wi-Fi

  • Use of kitchen space/kitchenware

  • Utilities

  • Shared bathroom (one on each floor)/personal towels


What’s not included?

  • Flights/transportation to San Miguel de Allende

  • Food

  • Art supplies

  • Trip expenses (entrance to museums and food)

  • Laundry: While the house doesn’t have laundry facilities there is one around the corner

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Getting There



The residency is located in downtown San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato, Mexico. It is a popular travel destination and has a number of transportation options from surrounding metro areas.


from cdmx

The easiest way is to schedule a Bajío Go service shuttle to pick you up if you are flying into the airport. Alternatively, there are direct buses from the airport to San Miguel de Allende or Querétaro. Otherwise, Primera Plus and ETN bus lines have daily trips to San Miguel de Allende from the Estación del Norte bus station.

from querétaro

ETN and Primera Plus bus lines provide several bus services a day to San Miguel de Allende, alternatively, you can schedule a Bajío Go shuttle service to pick you up from the airport. They can drop you off directly at the residency house.

from del bajío airport

The best way to travel to San Miguel from the Bajío Airport is to schedule a Bajío Go shuttle service. Alternatively, Uber or taxis are available for a higher price.

 The residence house

You will be living and working in your studio in a newly renovated private house a block away from the main plaza in San Miguel de Allende. The downtown area of San Miguel is a vibrant neighborhood with art galleries, theaters, live music venues, coffee shops, restaurants, stores, and colonial architecture, which reflects its rich history. Worth mentioning is the Guanajuato International Film Festival, which takes place in the month of July and is free to the public, with a great selection of international films.

San Miguel de Allende is a remarkably multicultural city. This is due to an influx of cultural tourism dating back since the 1940's. While the residency can be a great opportunity to brush up on your Spanish speaking skills, it is not necessary to speak Spanish to attend this program, as all the artist talks will be in English. It is easy to get around speaking just English in town. 

The house you will be staying at consists of three floors and it includes a kitchen, 4 private rooms, 4 studios, 3 bathrooms, an outdoor living area, a terrace and a courtyard. Each artist is assigned their own room and studio work space within the same house. In order for collaboration and sharing of ideas, artists must be respectful of each other’s space.

While we invite artists of all disciplines to apply, the studios are not suitable for instrumental practice, large scale sculptures or loud playback sound.

The location, while allowing you to experience the vibrant life of San Miguel de Allende, might be noisy at times.

The house as it is old is not equipped to host people with disabilities as there are stairs throughout the house.

Each artist is given their own key to the house, room and studio. A 25 dollar key security deposit is required, which will be returned upon departure.

The high temperatures hover between 73 and 88 degrees Fahrenheit. During the summer in San Miguel de Allende it rains often.

While the downtown area is the safest area, it is not recommended to walk alone at night by yourself.

Mexico’s visa requirement changes from country to country. Please check what the visa requirements are for your country.


San Miguel de Allende is a beautiful city located in the high plateau of Mexico, widely recognized on a global scale for its historical value, which in 2009, gained its inclusion in UNESCO’s list of World Heritage sites. Founded at the beginning of the 16th century by Spanish friars in an ancestral indigenous territory and due to the abundance of water and generous nature of this region, San Miguel reached a high economic development towards the end of the Viceroy era, especially in the production of textiles. The vigor of this industry earned San Miguel’s fame and wealth, which is reflected today in the civic and religious architecture of this final period of Spanish dominion. This economic splendor was also one of the determining factors of the insurgence, placing San Miguel at the center point of the Independence movement at the dawn of the 19th century.

After more than a century of blunder and decay, San Miguel went through an unexpected and quite remarkable cultural rebirth in the midst of the 20th century, which since then has marked its reputation not only as a tourist destination, but also as a “Mecca” for artists from all backgrounds, yearning for a propitious space for creative endeavors. The foundation of the Escuela de Bellas Artes (School of Fine Art) in an old colonial convent, by the visionary initiative of the painter and intellectual Felipe Cossío del Pomar, and by the North American writer and philanthropist Stirling Dickinson, attracted young artists to this forgotten town. Among this youth came Diego Rivera, Carlos Mérida, Roger von Gunten y David A. Siqueiros, along with a crescent number of creative folk from North America and other nationalities. Many of them made San Miguel their home, and since then have become part of the diverse local population. New art schools, studios and galleries have emerged with the years, as well as diverse art festivals, reinforcing the prestige of this city. And today, despite the growth of tourism, San Miguel has maintained its personality and character, which is marked by many decades of intense artistic and cultural activity.

our mission

Our mission is to provide a space for the research, production and exhibition of works tied to the local arts community of San Miguel de Allende. While in residence, the artists will benefit from a vast cultural exchange in a stimulating environment while employing their time on creating new work and/or delving deeper into a subject of their choosing while exchanging ideas with their colleagues.

who we are

The San Miguel Art Residency was created by Sabina Arias, a musician and visual artist from San Miguel de Allende. Her family has been an integral part of the community for many decades, and is active in supporting the local arts community. Before receiving a double degree in Art and Jazz Studies from The California Institute of the Arts in Los Angeles, Sabina realized how influential her upbringing in San Miguel was not only to her own creative process, but how inspirational this city has been and continues to be for many artists from all backgrounds. The San Miguel Art Residency is an effort to create bridges between the San Miguel arts community and artists from around the World, as well as to continue the legacy of cultural exchange which is the essence of this very special place.