Artist in Residence

In order to further support artists, Union Project created our Artist in Residence program. This residency provides the opportunity for an emerging artist to focus on their artwork and build their body of work, while taking part in a thriving ceramics community and serving the greater Pittsburgh community through teaching community arts programs and classes.

Erica Nickol

Erica Nickol is a ceramic sculptor who lives and works in Pittsburgh. While in residency at Union Project, she will be teaching workshops, building partnerships with community groups, and pursuing her own artwork.  Erica primarily uses porcelain, which she is drawn to because of the dramatic transformation it goes through when fired to a vitreous and sometimes translucent material. Erica received her Bachelor of Architecture degree from the University of Notre Dame in 2005 and her Master degree in Fine Arts in Ceramics from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia in 2012. 

To learn more about Erica and her work, visit her Facebook page or webpage.


Evan Church

Evan Church is an international artist who was born in California, and raised in Africa. During his residency, Church will work on his current series of watercolor and oil paintings depicting life on East Africa’s Swahili Coast.

“As an American raised in Malawi, Zimbabwe, and Kenya, I’ve grown up between cultures. Everything I do is a communication between the two primary cultures in my life, western and African. I have learned so much from Africa. I feel an obligation to share my experience through my art and show that the lives of African people are beautiful and meaningful. I want people to hear the stories and realize that we can learn from people who live so simply”

Church has worked in Africa as an aid worker for multiple humanitarian organizations and also spent three months backpacking along the Swahili coast, mainly in Zanzibar. The people he met during this time greatly influenced his artwork. 

Church will hold open studio hours throughout September on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 11-1 and Wednesdays from 7-9, to meet with visitors and discuss his artwork and techniques. Church will also be available during the Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council’s Arts Community Happy Hour on Thursday, September 26 from 5:00-7:00 pm. Groups or classes interested in a studio visit with Church are welcomed and asked to contact Jenna Vanden Brink at to schedule a visit.

Funding for Evan Church’s residency was provided by the Advancing Black Arts in Pittsburgh Grant, a joint program of The Pittsburgh Foundation and The Heinz Endowments.

To learn more about Evan and his work, visit his webpage.

For inquiries and additional information about our current Artists in Residence, contact Jenna Vanden Brink at 412-363-4550 x222, If this residency program does not meet your needs, please contact Jenna to discuss other opportunities.


AIR Application.Fillable.pdf91.07 KB