McCanna House Artist-In-Residence Program


McCanna, North Dakota


McCanna, North Dakota is a small farming community about 35 miles west of Grand Forks, just north of the town of Larimore. The McCanna family began farming the area in the mid-1800's, and it prospered into what was one of the largest Bonanza farms in the area. Margery McCanna Jennison inherited the family farmstead, consisting of the 1920 French country style farmhouse, a 40 x 70 foot steel building, and 9 acres of surrounding farm land. Including fruit trees, and endless open skies, McCanna allows for creativity to flourish. The McCanna house, however secluded, is located within accessibility to a thriving art scene and shopping opportunities in Grand Forks, and the small community living of Larimore.





North Dakota Museum of Art proudly presents a unique opportunity with the McCanna House Artist-in-Residence Program. This retreat consists of a 1920's farmhouse and large outlying steel building in the midst of the thriving farmland of the Red River Valley of Eastern North Dakota.


While the residency affords no dedicated media specific facilities at this time, the open mutable space of the house, barn and grounds affords opportunity for the creation of work in many scales. The powerfully vast physical space of the Great Plains allows the imagination to run wild, with the close proximity to large scale agriculture drawing one into the cycles of growth and harvest. Out of this open horizon emerges a peace and presence of mind uniquely conducive to creativity and artistic shift.


The solo residency consists of 2-4 week blocks throughout the operating year. Winter dictates that the house is only open from June 1st to the end of September. 


While there are no expectations for the artist to complete work during the residency, artists are asked to use their time wisely, and be aware of the transformative potential of time spent there. Artists will not be asked to teach classes, or give public lectures as a requirement of the residency.


Applications accepted until January 15th of each year. Residencies announced February 1st. Applications will reopen in February, after residences are announced. Preference given to regional artists, with remaining availability open to all.


Click here to access application form




•Free Wireless Internet
•Well lit French country-style farmhouse, detached 40 x 70 foot steel building, and large outdoor space with yards and surrounding tree lines.
•House has 3 full bedrooms, each with attached bathrooms
•New washer and dryer
•New electric stove in well appointed kitchen
•Screened in porch area with convenient BBQ
•A modest array of hand tools
•Opportunities to work with surrounding community groups
•10 miles from town of Larimore (pop.2,000), yet feels remote and private.
•35 miles from Grand Forks (pop.55,000), with its thriving art scene and good shopping/dining
•5 hours to Minneapolis and 2 hours to Winnipeg, Manitoba
•Well stocked library
•Fruit trees
•Surrounded by working fields producing soy beans, potatoes, canola, and more...
•Big weather





Note: The workspace is very raw at this point, and is not handicap accessible. There are no media specific studio areas and the large steel building has a dirt floor. Work space in that building consists of a long wooden bench, an assortment of hand tools and hardware, 220V (single phase) electricity, and a lot of open area with 20 foot ceilings. The steel building will be in use as a staging area for museum resources during the 2015 season, and only a limited area including a long workbench will be accessible for smaller projects. In future years, the whole space will be opened up for installations, projections, and larger 2D and 3D work.


Artists are Responsible for the following: Transportation, groceries, all art supplies, computers or iPads (if needed), $150 cleaning fee upon arrival.





Margery McCanna &

The McCanna House


Margery McCanna Jennison, ardent supporter of the arts, and a well-versed world traveler, gave her ancestral home to the North Dakota Museum of Art, after she passed away in April of 2010. She left the farmstead to the museum, with the understanding that it would be used to house an artist- in- residence program- a place where people could have the peace and solitude to unfurl the power of their imagination.


This allowed the museum to establish the state’s first, full-fledged, Artist-in-residence Program. The residency offers artists, composers, and writers unfettered time to work in a setting that preserves the history and integrity of one of North Dakota’s first architect-designed, country homes surrounded by rich, agricultural land. The house affords the resident artists a place to contemplate the visceral sense of space and change out here, and to allow this to inspire a blueprint of limitlessness.



Past Artists In Residence


Barbara Hatfield 

Lamar Peterson 

Claudia Bucher 

Marcie Rendon 

Steph Kunze 

Johnathan Campbell

Christopher Benson and Sue McNally 

John Colle Rogers

Tim Schouten

Todd Pate

Helgi Eyjólfsson

Vala Eyjólfsson

Carole d'Inverno

Pirjo Berg

James Culleton

Margaret Wall-Romana

Chris Pancoe

Micah Bloom

Lino Azevedo

Nicole Gagner

Kelli Nelson

Kimberly Benson

Blyth Meier

Allen Killian-Moore