2020 Photo Urbanism Fellow Barnabas Crosby at the inaugural Neighborhood Narratives Youth Photography Workshop, Photo by Anthony Artis

Looking for photographers to apply for a 2022-2023 fellowship with our latest initiative, The Restorative City, focusing on health equity and the built environment!

The Design Trust for Public Space, in partnership with the Museum of the City of New York (MCNY) and NeON Photography, is now accepting fellowship submissions from photographers for the Design Trust’s latest public space initiative, The Restorative City, focusing on health equity and the built environment. 

Project Overview:

We believe that photography is vital to understanding our shared environment and is a powerful tool for illuminating the city’s complex public realm. The Photo Urbanism Program was founded in 2001 to support the creation of new work that explores the natural and built environment of New York City, and surpasses strictly editorial and documentary imagery. 

The 2022 - 2023 Photo Urbanism Fellow will create a self-driven plan to photograph and document the core focus of The Restorative City initiative. While the project will look at policy and design changes required to confront health equity, the role of the Photo Urbanism Fellow is to use a range of artistic and journalistic photography and videography to capture the human, personal narratives that exist within community wellness. 

Job Description:

The Photo Urbanism Fellow will dedicate 5% of their fellowship to administrative tasks such as attending meetings, invoicing, and tracking expenses. 20% of the fellowship will be to provide mentorship to youth photographers and the remaining 75% will be to developing project work, including, but not limited to, photographing, editing images, developing programming, and exhibition planning. 

The fellowship award includes a $15,000 stipend and a solo exhibition.


  • Two youth photography workshops
  • One final solo exhibition- including a written description of work/project, and a minimum of 5 final images (digital and print; size to be determined)


The Photo Urbanism Fellow must be based in New York City and be available to participate in meetings with the Design Trust, NeON Photography, and the Museum of the City of New York. The Design Trust will act as a resource and thought-partner and will arrange two critiques with local photographers. The fellowship requires a 6-month commitment, based on a mutually agreed-upon work plan.

Restorative City Background:

In New York City, an individual living in the South Bronx has a life expectancy of 69.5 years, while a resident of the Upper East Side has a life expectancy of 89.5 years, 20 years longer. Where we live matters, and where we live is too often governed by exclusion, racism, and discrimination. As part of the Design Trust’s mission to advance collaborative public space initiatives, The Restorative City: Building Community Wellness through Public Space initiative sought out new ideas through an open request for proposals (RFP) to empower community action across NYC’s five boroughs and elevate public health to a central precept of public policy and urban design. The Restorative City is a call to action for urban planning, design and public policy professionals, and all those involved in shaping the physical environments in which we live, work and play. 

Selection Process:

The decision of the jury will be final, private, and without appeal. All applicants will be notified in October 2022.

The selection jury will include: 

*Jury still in formation.

Submission Guidelines:

DEADLINE: Thursday, October 6th at 11:59 pm Eastern Standard Daylight Time 

ELIGIBILITY: Applicants must be at least 21 years of age and eligible to work legally in the United States. Full-time students are not eligible due to possible time restraints, but part-time students may submit. Applicants must be based in New York City in order to concentrate on the local content of the fellowship. Applicants with 5-7 years of photography experience preferred. Experience teaching and youth engagement are preferred. The selected fellow must be able to commit to a 6-month long fellowship, with an average time commitment of 8 - 12 hours a week starting November 1st. 


  • November: Photo Urbanism Fellow begins 11/1
  • December: initial review of fellows work and concept
  • February: midpoint critique; 4-day youth photo workshop led by Photo Urbanism Fellow 
  • March: 1-day Youth Photo Workshop led by Photo Urbanism Fellow 
  • April: final solo exhibition 
  • May: last week of fellowship; Evaluation and offboarding

MATERIALS: All application materials must be submitted to fellowship@designtrust.org by 11:59 pm on October 6th, 2022. Materials that do not meet the following criteria will not be presented to the jury. 

  • Work samples: A portfolio of three (3) jpg images showing representative work made within the last three years. Applicants are encouraged to include some images that demonstrate their approach to the urban environment. 
  • Written materials: Save the following as one PDF named "lastname_firstname.pdf."
  • Project proposal and a brief description explaining your approach to the topic of capturing the essence and stories of public health and public space in response to The Restorative City. Explain (a) why you are interested in this topic; (b) what you propose to do; (c) how this topic relates to your work; (c)what experience you have had working with youth or teaching photography. Maximum 300 words. 
  • Artist statement describing your approach to photography and the type of camera(s) you use. Maximum 150 words.
  • Artist resume including your education, exhibition history, mailing address, and email contact. Maximum one page.
  • Image list with corresponding image #, title, date, and location
  • Letter of recommendation: One letter of recommendation must be submitted directly from the recommender’s email account. The recommender should know the applicant personally and be familiar with their work. The letter should specifically address the applicant's professional capacity to carry out a self-directed project. 

The 2022 Photo Urbanism Fellowship is supported in part by the NYC Department of Cultural Affairs.