Looking back over a joyful and busy year of residencies in 2022, we are feeling proud of what we have achieved to date.
- We have supported 94 creatives, from diverse backgrounds and locations, allowing them the time, space and pace to develop their work, through focus, experimentation and play.
- We have created a home from home, where new friendships have been established and new ideas developed through cross-disciplinary and cross-cultural exchange.
- And we have certainly witnessed the positive impact this moment has had on the development of the resident’s work and, in many cases, their mental health and ongoing quality of life.
We’d like to begin this post with a huge THANK YOU to all of our new friends who came to stay, who had the confidence to travel overseas once again, despite the ongoing risks following the pandemic, and an ongoing belief in the value of cultural mobility as an integral part of the work life of a creative professional.
‘…I rested. I renewed. I reflected.’ Grace Marquez, 2022
Read about their experiences in their own words here.
FOCUS ON 2022
We have welcomed guests from 17 countries now, but it wasn’t until this year that we had our first French resident, Charlotte Paillieux, who travelled to us from Paris.
It was the French sunshine that drew Cassandra Shier Hasanov from Canada, as she was searching for a suitable space to create Cyanotype prints. In complete contrast Anna Tregloan’s focus during her residency was on ice and for two weeks we found bizarre frozen installations melting throughout our outbuildings and gardens. Lien Cornelissen used her time to write a musical, filling the studio with her powerful voice and joyful piano, Gaylord Brewer to write an ode to the French pastry Le Jésuite and Catherine Butterfield to write the outline for a new screenplay, directly inspired by the experience of being in this royal city of Nèrac. Julia Feld loved the region so much she bought a house!
‘…an atmosphere of interest and support without ever feeling overly invasive.’ Anna Tregloan, 2022
We continue to be impressed by how hard our residents work while they are with us. Truly driven individuals, with focus and passion for their craft.
Find out a little about what our residents have been up to here.
STUDIO FAIRE PRESENTS
We had the pleasure of presenting two events in 2022, the first, a VIP event at the property and the second a public event in the town and on Facebook live.
We were so pleased to see so many good friends and new faces at our Open Studio in July. Visitors scurried through the candle lit barn to find a treasure trove of found objects and mixed media artworks, created by Kimberley Bass, saw images of past works by Ellen Bleiwas and listened to two moving readings by Berna Mason. A feast soon followed!
Later in the year we hosted ‘For the Love of Caves’ at La Taverne d’Henri, Nérac, and on Facebook Live, presenting film and artwork by Grace Marquez inspired by her diving in French caves just prior to her residency, accompanied by an ambient, atmospheric soundscapes played by Emily Adele Williams on her cello.
The Facebook Live recording is still available to see here.
FEATURING STUDIO FAIRE
A lovely article was written about Studio Faire by journalist Caroline Calvet in the local edition of the Sud Ouest in October.
‘Les artistes se bousculent pour séjournet chez Julia Douglas and Colin Usher, dans un écrin de vielles pierres, de calme et de verdure propice à la création…’
‘Artists jostle to stay with Julia Douglas and Colin Usher, in a setting of old stones, calm and greenery conducive to creation…’
Read the full English translation (with links to the original) here.
SUPPORTING STUDIO FAIRE
The house has fallen strangely silent now that the season is over until April 2023, when we will be gearing up once again for a full year. We are already fully booked for next year and already accepting applications for 2024, so if you are interested in applying, see available dates here and don’t dilly dally!
Of course we’re not sitting idle though! We’ve already removed some fabulous 1960s wallpaper and tiles from, what will be, our resident’s second bathroom. Now we await the assistance of the specialists to add a new toilet, bath and sink. Once we have two bathrooms we can also renovate another bedroom to allow us to offer four residencies at a time.
Our long term ambitions are to expand to be able to offer six residencies at a time, alongside creative learning programmes for people in the local community, by improving accommodation and studio spaces (renovating the barn pictured above).
We also aim to offer funded residency awards for those who do not have the ability to self-fund. We will do this by allocating a percentage of all residency fees to funded opportunities and continuing to seek external support from individuals and funding bodies. If you, or someone you know, would like to support Studio Faire at this critical time and help it reach its full potential then we now have one-time and annual options for supporting Studio Faire and its future residents.
‘The experience will resound in my life and work for years to come; I am certain of it.’ – Michelle Lewis, 2022
INTRODUCING HENRI QUAT’
And finally, say hello to the newest member of the household, Henri Quat’ \kat\, who arrived hungry and desperate on Halloween night as we sat around the fire pit with our final residents! Resident Shanna McNair had already spotted him earlier as he wove, panicking, through the traffic, crying with starvation and dehydration. She persuaded us to feed him a little and we soon fell for his cheeky charm.
Now chipped, snipped and up to date with his jabs, he’s here to stay it would appear, as he hasn’t ventured far from the house since! He’s playful, unpredictable, bonkers and cuddly. Just as a kitten should be.
Outnumbered by animals we prepare ourselves for the winter, with knowledge that the house will soon resound again with human laughter.
Until then, we send you our warmest wishes for a happy festive season!
Julia & Colin
‘Fold it’ napkins by Julia Douglas in the Dining Room (Photo Colin Usher)
Cassandra Shier Hasanov in the Garage Studio (Photo Colin Usher)
Diving film still by Grace Marquez
French resident, Charlotte Paillieux in the hall (Photo Colin Usher)
Studio Faire’s studios to be renovated (Photo Colin Usher)
Resident’s bathroom to be renovated (Photo Colin Usher)
Henri Quat’ (Photo Colin Usher)