Kaneko, Ree

Founder of the Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts, Ree Kaneko discusses the history and importance of artist residency programs, and gives her first-hand account of what residency jurors are looking for in an artist’s application.

“After you’ve been in the arts long enough and look at enough work, you can recognize when someone has mastered a skill with their material. Then, after a while, you start looking for the talent and creativity –what it is that you want to support.”

Ree Kaneko founded the Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts in 1981, serving as Executive Director until early 2001. From 1980-84, Kaneko was the Founder and Director of Alternative Worksite, an Artist-in-Industry Program. She received a BFA from the University of Nebraska at Omaha where she was honored with a Distinguished Alumna Award in 1991. Kaneko is also a founding board member of the Alliance of Artists Communities.