The Rapid Response FAQ’s

What kind of support does Eyebeam offer for Rapid Response For A Better Digital Future?

Rapid Response for A Better Digital Future will unfold in two phases. In Phase 1, the planning/idea stage, 25 $5,000 grants will be made available for top applications, gathered through a free open call, open from April 21 until May 30. In Phase 2, the project/development phase, five of those recipients will be awarded up to an additional $25,000 to build their ideas into actionable projects, based on their potential for real-world impact.

The program will offer public online platforms for participating artists to share their work and research, as well as opportunities to engage with Eyebeam’s prestigious alumni and expert network.

Robust virtual communication, expert consultation, skill-sharing, and group critique and conversation will be provided to the supported artists, facilitated by Eyebeam.


How is Rapid Response For A Better Digital Future expanding to support former Eyebeam Residents? 


Thanks to the support of Henry Luce Foundation and the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Eyebeam is now better able to honor its commitment to the community of artists we have supported in our 20+ history. We have now expanded the program to support an additional 5 artists who have been part of the Eyebeam Residency program at any time in the past. All applicants will apply through the same online form. An added question on the application will now ask ‘Are you a former Eyebeam Resident?” 


How many total artists will be supported by Rapid Response For A Better Digital Future in each Phase?


In Phase 1, a minimum of 27 artists will be selected to participate, which includes two additional artists by nomination from the Open Call Advisory, in partnership with La Becque and Swissnex | Boston


In Phase 2, a minimum of 5 artists, selected from the initial group, will be selected to participate.


How long is this opportunity?

The Rapid Response for A Better Digital Future will run in two phases:

  • Phase 1, Idea Development, 30  artists: Mid-July – September 1
  • Phase 2, Project Development, 5 participating artists from Phase 1, September 4 – early 2021


How will my work be presented?

Participating artists will share their work and research conducted during Phase 1 publicly online at the end of the period regardless of their project’s state of completion. The public sharing will take form compatible with the work, in consultation with Eyebeam staff. 

What am I committing to?

Participating artists must commit to attend all scheduled engagements for the duration of the work period. This will consist of online expert consultation, skill sharing, and group critique and conversation provided to the supported artists, facilitated by Eyebeam. A schedule will be shared once applicants are accepted.

Who is eligible to apply?

Individuals and collaborative projects may apply. A single person (21 years or older) must be responsible for committing for the term of engagement, and will serve as the point person for communications and payments. Collaborating applicants should reflect a history of working together in the context of art making.

Our collaborative project is part of or in partnership with a 501(c)3, are we eligible to apply?

While collaborative projects may apply, It should be clearly demonstrated that the project is an artist collaborative application, and not a 501(c)3. 501(c)3 organizations are not eligible to apply. 

I’m an Eyebeam alum. Can I apply?

Yes, you can. We have expanded the program to support 5 alumni artists in Phase 1 who have previously participated in the Eyebeam Residency. All applicants will apply through the same online form. An added question on the application will now ask ‘Are you a former Eyebeam Resident?” These 5 artists will also be able to apply to Phase 2. 

I am not an American Citizen. Am I eligible to apply?

International applicants are welcome and encouraged to apply, and you are not required to live or work in the US during the period of this grant. This program is being run virtually. 

Please note that if you are not a US citizen and you are planning to work in the US during the period of this grant, if you do not have a visa to work in the US, all grant payments are subject to an upfront 30% withholding tax. 

What do you mean by surveillance capitalism? 

Simply put: the commodification of personal information, usually by digital means, and its impact on societies around the globe. Eyebeam is interested in broad interpretations and viewpoints, from the perspective of artists and technologists. A number of Eyebeam alumni have responded to digital collection and commodification of personal data in imaginative ways over the years. Of note are projects by Tega Brain, Surya Mattu, Alex Galloway, Laurel Ptak, James Bridle, Zach Blas, and more. Our full alumni list can be found here

Eyebeam acknowledges the term’s popularization in 2014 by social psychologist, Shoshana Zuboff through her 2019 book, The Age of Surveillance Capitalism

Can my project that is released into the public domain also host work that is licensed or proprietary? 

To be eligible to apply, the component that is supported by Eyebeam, needs to be released into the public domain and made non-commercially available. The component does not, however, need to ensure that everything created or hosted on it also be released into the public domain.  If that work, not directly supported by Eyebeam, is licensed and proprietary that is acceptable.

Is this opportunity entirely virtual?

Yes, it is. The cohort will engage in online activities facilitated by Eyebeam.If selected, you do not need to be located in New York or move to New York to participate. If opportunities for in-person gathering becomes possible, we will work with the participants on coordination. 

What is the Eyebeam Center for the Future of Journalism?

The Eyebeam Center for the Future of Journalism (ECFJ) is an experimental grant-making program that supports artists and artist-journalist teams producing innovative and revelatory journalistic work for major media outlets.

What other services do you provide?

We have an ever-growing list of partner organizations that provide additional advisorship and support. Participating artists also gain access to our dynamic community of well over 500 former Eyebeam Residents through our listserv, a valuable resource for opportunities as well as a place to pose questions and bounce ideas off of experts in the field.

Do you provide health insurance?

No. Eyebeam does not provide health insurance.

My project is already established and ongoing and I am seeking funding for its continuation. Am I still eligible to apply?

While artists may submit applications for projects which have already begun, Rapid Response For A Better Digital Future is focused on supporting, firstly, new ideas. If the applicant wishes to apply for a new component of a project already in progress, please focus the application primarily on that new component, and why it is vital to participate in this program for its growth and success. 

What is the criteria for selection in Phase 1?

  • Alignment with Eyebeam’s values:
    • Openness: All the work here is driven by an open-source ethos. 
    • Invention: We build on ideas to generate new possibilities. 
    • Justice: Technology by artists is a move towards equity and democracy.
  • A dedication to the guiding question, “how do we begin to exit surveillance capitalism as the dominating form of digital life?” through one or more of the provided lenses, as outlined in the open call. 
  • Clear artistic intentions and goals.
  • A purposeful relationship to technology.
  • Social urgency and potential impact.


Do I need to submit work samples when applying to Phase 1?



What are some tips for the Phase 1 application? 

  • Read through the application guidelines prior to beginning and follow the word limits in each section.
  • In the first round, each jury member, in reality, is likely to spend less than 15 minutes on your application. Clarity is paramount.
  • Explain why Eyebeam specifically is the right place for this project.
  • Be clear and concise in explaining what you would like to do.

Do you have some tips for the video or audio statement portion of the application?


  • Treat it like an opportunity to introduce yourself and your work.
  • Reading is ok, but try to share your idea simply and in an informal way that gets the viewer interested and wanting to know more.
  • You do not need to edit this statement.


What happens once I submit my application?

You will be able to save the draft of your application as you progress until the application deadline. Upon submitting your application, you will receive an automatic confirmation message. You will not be able to make any edits to your application after it has been submitted or after the application period closes.

I can’t use the Submittable application. How do I apply?

Email us at [email protected] at least one week before the deadline, and we’ll send you a form.

What is the jurying process like?

All applications will be reviewed by an internally selected group of jurors representative of the field of arts and technology. The jury will assemble a shortlist of applicants to be selected for interviews to then determine the final awardees. In mid-June we will announce the selected participating artists of Phase 1, then in September, we will announce Phase 2 participating artists. 

Who has the opportunity to apply to Phase 2?

All participating artists in Phase 1 will have the opportunity to apply to Phase 2.

What if I am not selected to participate?

All applicants will receive a response notifying them of the final status of their application. We know that preparing an application is an investment, and want to thank all applicants for their time. Applicants who are selected for interviews, but not selected for funding, will receive feedback specific to their application. 

How can I stay in touch with or get updates?

Please join our newsletter Friends & Family Newsletter, here you will receive updates from our active network of alumni, world affairs in the field of art and technology, curated reading lists, and inside looks into the Eyebeam archive.