Walker Art Center Design Studio
Skip to main content

Visit the Gradient, our online design publication.

Insights Design Lecture Series

Watch lectures by some of the most adventurous designers practicing today.


Minnesota by Design is a web-based initiative by the Walker Art Center to document the rich landscape of design across the state. The Minnesota by Design site was conceived as part of the Walker Art Center’s celebration of its 75th anniversary as a public art center. Although the Walker has presented contemporary architecture and design since its founding in 1940, there is no official collection of such objects at the museum. By eschewing the object-centered nature of most museum collecting and its attendant issues of conservation and connoisseurship, the Walker was free to explore design in the larger context of the cultural and social issues from which it arises and in which it resides.


Intangibles was an online collection of art objects that have no physical form, existing side by side with the very tangible items already for sale on the Walker Shop site. See the objects.

Since 1980, the Walker’s Design department has maintained a graphic design fellowship program that provides recent graduates (both undergraduate and graduate) the opportunity to work in a professional design studio environment.

The Walker Design Fellowship provides unique insight into our renown design department, working in close collaboration with an inspiring cohort of designers, curators, artists, and other cultural producers at the institution. The Walker’s design department provides a welcoming working environment, with full access to tools and mentorship through this full-time employment on a one-year term. Previous fellows have went on to do incredible work around the world, as well as here at the Walker.

We are searching for designers who are open to learning and collaboration, while being comfortable and adept at developing projects for both print and screen. Ideal candidates will be firmly grounded in visual design principles and the print and digital design processes. The work that fellows gain experience on and contribute to will include exhibition identities and collateral materials, as well as online publishing initiatives, campaigns, and signage.

The fellowship offers an excellent opportunity for continued growth and honing your skills through participating in the design process. The fellow will join an accomplished team of professionals known for creating culture-leading work. Immersed in the Design department, fellows gain a deeper understanding of design and editorial work in an art institution;

work on projects with deep, rich, interesting content; and are expected to produce work to the highest standards of design excellence. Fellows are involved in all aspects of the design process, including meetings and presentations through production and development, further expanding their professional experience.

Selected from a highly competitive pool of applicants, fellows come from graphic design programs throughout the United States and abroad. We are committed to encourage and welcome candidates from various backgrounds and education, granted they have a great interest and demonstrated rigor in design, visual communication and the arts.

Program Specifics
  • Fellowship begins in September and lasts one year.
  • Fellows work full-time in the department.
  • Compensation: $40,000 for the fellowship year with a $2,000 relocation allowance and excellent benefits.
  • Fellows are eligible to receive benefits such as paid vacation and sick days and health and dental insurance.
  • Non-U.S. citizens must possess a valid work visa for the entire fellowship period.
  • Applicants must possess a four-year undergraduate or graduate degree in graphic design.
  • Macintosh proficiency in Adobe InDesign, Photoshop, and Illustrator software is required.
  • Working knowledge of HTML5, CSS/SASS, and Basic jQuery/JavaScript beneficial but not required.
  • Knowledge of motion graphic applications and digital video production beneficial but not required.
  • Interest in contemporary arts and current design and cultural issues desired.
  • Successful applicants must have good communication and organizational skills and be able to meet tight deadlines.
  • Walker Art Center is an EOE/AA Employer.
How to Apply

Please wait for the position to be posted on the Walker’s job board. Once it is posted, please use the job application site to submit the following application materials: a letter of interest, a résumé, names and contact information of three references, and a PDF portfolio containing 8-10 examples of graphic design work (no larger than 19 MB).

Frequently Asked Questions

Can the fellowship be shorter than one year?

No. Because of the extensive training and preparation the studio undertakes to train fellows, a one-year commitment is necessary.

Can I apply for the fellowship while I’m still in school?

Since the fellowship is decided in the summer and begins in the fall, only those individuals who have graduated or will have graduated by the time the fellowship begins should apply.

What kinds of projects do fellows work on?

Fellows work on a variety of projects representing a full-range of the departments at the Walker—whether film/video screenings, performing arts events, visual arts exhibitions, new media initiatives, or educational programs. These can vary in size and scope from a postcard invitation to a multiple-page brochure to a series of collateral pieces for an exhibition. Fellows also assist other graphic designers in the department with long-term projects such as exhibition catalogues and promotional campaigns.

What is the review process?

The design staff meets to review all applications. Typically, a short-list of finalists is assembled and is invited to interview on-site with members of the department. During this visit, candidates are requested to present their work and are invited to view the work of the department.

When will I know if I am a finalist?

We will notify all candidates of their disposition by the end of June. Start date for the fellowship will be at the beginning of August.

Can I interview even if I am not a finalist?

Unfortunately, because of the number of applicants and to maintain fairness in the review process, we are unable to conduct interviews with any applicants who are not considered finalists.