The Aesthetic Union was created out of a desire to collaborate. Though printing has long been a method for artists to duplicate their work, it is a craft that requires years of dedication to master. When an artist collaborates with a Master Printer, a new type of artwork is created. From the artist’s hand, to the printing plates, to the press, and finally to the printer’s eye, the image is altered in every step. The final product is a different specimen, transformed through the alchemical process of a craft that has been around for centuries.

The Aesthetic Union is a thriving letterpress print shop located in the Mission District of San Francisco. We specialize in custom work and fine art editions that stretch the boundaries of letterpress, blending bold aesthetics with traditional methods.

In the spirit of transformative collaboration, The Aesthetic Union invites you to submit a proposal to our artist in residence program.

We are looking for candidates who thoughtfully execute their concepts and exhibit a strong sense of individual style. Our mission is to expand the vision and versatility of the artists we host. Previous experience with letterpress is not required, but all pieces created during the residency must be works in print.

The program will take place in August of 2016 and includes:

One month in our studio to create your project

A $1,000 stipend for materials

A mid-residency lecture

An exhibition of your new work in our gallery

Lodging in San Francisco can be arranged if needed

Our shop is outfitted with the following equipment:

1952 Heidelberg Cylinder Press (15” x 20.5”)

1974 Heidelberg Windmill Press (10” x  15”)

1910 Chandler & Price Press (10” x 15”)

44” Epson 9600 Inkjet Printer

a4 photopolymer platemaker

Paper drill and guillotine

An assortment of other equipment

The skill and knowledge of our Master Printer

The Aesthetic Union will provide the following support over the course of your residency:

Preliminary Support Before you arrive in San Francisco we will arrange accommodations as needed and help to resolve any logistical concerns. We will also provide research recommendations for your perusal before the residency begins.

Production Support We are dedicated to the development of your work and to the excellent implementation of the resources we provide. The Master Printer will be your primary point of contact throughout the course of your residency, providing you access to expert guidance and over twelve years of professional printing experience.

Exposure The residency will include two valuable opportunities to discuss and showcase your new work: a mid-month lecture and a gallery exhibition at the end of the month. Both of these events will be promoted by The Aesthetic Union through numerous press, professional and social media channels. In addition to these events, we will arrange studio visits with local artists and printers to maximize your exposure to our vibrant community. Since our shop occupies the Heath Ceramics collective building we have unique opportunities to reach a large audience in fields of both craft and art.

Selection Process Submissions will close on May 1st, 2016. Applicants will be notified May 31st, 2016.

How To Apply Applications may be emailed to

or sent via postal mail to: The Aesthetic Union 555 Alabama Street Suite E San Francisco, CA 94110

Proposal Guidelines An in-depth description of your project (2 or 3 pages). Include your thoughts on materials, process, and design. Also include any sketches, roughs, mockups, or previous versions of your project. In addition, please note any previous letterpress experience (not required) and whether you will need housing accommodations.

We look forward to your submission.