Founded in 2010, ACRE is a non-profit organization based in Chicago designed to support emerging artists develop, discuss and present their artistic practices.

As a community-coordinated effort to provide emerging artists with an accessible, equitable, and interdisciplinary residency and exhibitions program, ACRE has welcomed over 1,000 visual artists, sound artists, musicians, performance artists, writers, curators, scientists, chefs and others to its Wisconsin and Illinois communities.

ACRE’s residency takes place every summer in rural Southwest Wisconsin. The residency facilities include numerous buildings which provide for expansive communal work spaces, a screen-printing studio, an outdoor wood shop, an art and tech facility, a sound studio, a fibers studio and a ceramics studio. Shared accommodations are hand built from salvaged timbers and furnished with individual bathrooms, kitchenettes, and decks. All meals are provided, and are prepared daily using ingredients grown in the surrounding area, which is renowned for its organic and sustainable agriculture and dairy farms.

Residents have the opportunity to expand upon their individual practices and take part in optional programming within a collaborative community. A number of visiting artists are invited to conduct studio visits and present lectures, discussions, workshops and other non-traditional programming. ACRE hosts 20-25 residents during each 14-day long session. 

Over the subsequent years, ACRE endeavors to provide further opportunities for exposure, community building, and professional development to its alumni. ACRE works to cultivate an active alumni network providing connections, resources, exhibitions, public programming, performance, and other opportunities following the residency program. All alumni are also given web space on ACRE’s digital flat file, which is used for consideration for participation in exhibitions and other opportunities. These efforts complement other activities and programming designed to create the conditions for a thriving and enduring arts network.