I always wanted to be offered a summer art residency. You know the dream. It involves perfect food at a lovely dining room table or magically appearing at your door. You have a cozy little cabin or an urban warehouse studio in an exciting part of a large city. Ocean, desert, mountains, lakes, or forests surround you. You have no real responsibilities except to your art. A convivial group of fascinating, talented artists would provide incisive feedback and hilarious, refreshing evening play. And of course I would blissfully, effortlessly, and ceaselessly create my new theme. And the Art Gods would say, “It is good.”
I wanted the feeling of leaving home, but underneath that, what I sought was a support structure outside the ordinary for creating art intensively for two weeks. Heck, I’m an artist, with a good studio and great arts community. My job is to create, so why not create my own summer residency? My colleague Karina Nishi Marcus and I devised the Caerus Artist Residency.
Caerus runs from July 8 through July 21, 2012. It’s a work-in-your-studio residency, shared virtually. I was inspired by a Philadelphia artist who created his own summer residency in his own studio, and Nanowrimo, National Novel writing month, when writers all over the country commit to writing 50,000 words in a month period, receiving support and sharing online in a specified pocket of time.
Caerus (Ky-russ) is a lesser-known godlet. He’s the slippery opportunity in time, as opposed to the linear clock. We might call him inspiration or flow. Artists seek him. Sometimes it seems that time for creating art is being devoured in our consumer culture. We need to invite Caerus, or Kairos, sacred time, into our studios. Who knows which windows of inspiration might open for us?
We’ll focus on creating time for art for two weeks, minimizing other commitments as we can. At the end of two weeks, we’ll celebrate. You choose how much time you can devote to your art and fill in the free application form to join us. Caerus will be a forum for posting comments and photos on your process.
I’ve chosen to commit four hours a day in-studio. I’ll be working on the large pieces of the Dionysian project, and a new project I’ll reveal during the residency. As in a residency, I’ll have special arrangements for food and recreation, and minimize my other life duties.
Come on, it’ll be fun. Whether your studio is a computer or a dining room table or a beautiful atelier, whether you have 15 minutes a day or 8 hours a day, you can participate in the Caerus Artist Residency.