Spain

Spain Art Residency Revisit Part 1

It's been a year since I spent a November in Cádiz, Spain for an art residency. At that time, I thought I would write about it here, but it ended up that I preferred to spend my time exploring the city or working in the studio rather than be on a computer.

I thought this November would be a good time to share more about this trip in detail. I can't tell you how much I've thought about this time in the past year. Going through the photos actually makes me pine for going going back. Throughout this month, I will be sharing the time I spent in Spain and Morocco.  

From San Francisco, I landed in Madrid. Shortly after, this tiny plane sent me from Madrid to Cádiz, landing me at my destination on November 1st, 2014. From the airport, the landscape looked a bit like the farmland in close by areas of California. The feeling of driving through and wondering what I was in for is the magical thing about travel. 

These are the city walls of old Cádiz. Arriving here and seeing this beautiful old place was the most exciting thing. 

The Gran Catedral along the promenade. Residents walk, run and bike this route around the city. I had many quiet moments wandering along it.

Cadiz cathedral sketch.JPG

I sketched this painting of Cadiz before I left. You can see the Gran Catedral in the background. 

My welcome tote bag, button and postcard that highlights where I stayed during my residency. You can see the location is right on the Atlantic Ocean. The Espacio de Creación Contemporánea was a former military barrack and now a gorgeous marble-filled museum space. The residency is on the top floor. 

This is the map of where all the Linea de Costa artists came from. You can see that artists have been selected from just about every continent. You can see my flag on the West Coast in California. 

This was my kitchen of the apartment for the month. There was hand painted tile, a washing machine and all the basics one would need. The bathroom also had similar hand painted tile work. 

Studio window blue sky.JPG

And the studio view I had everyday. I couldn't ask for anything better. 

More to come next week!

Linea de Costa Art Residency in Cádiz, Spain Pt. 2

I had started writing some blog posts while I was on my art residency in Spain. I ended up only publishing one of the many I had planned. I was too engrossed in the moment, whether making new work, talking with new friends, eating good tapas or quietly meandering. This series of posts will cover my time out there. There are a lot of photos and experiences to cover, so I had to split it up into easily digestible amounts. You can read the earlier posts on my first week in Cádiz, Spain and on texture and pattern inspiration. This one will focus on what a residency is.

While I was out in Spain, I kept getting questions from my friends here in the States about why I was out there in the first place. It seems that the concept of an art residency isn't much known outside of artists, and even then, not all artists know about them. Many people just thought I was going to school out there. 

Art residencies are meant as time and space for an artist to create and think about their work. Residencies are application-based, so you have to submit a portfolio or images and write a statement and bio. They usually provide housing, a studio and support for your work or a specific project. You may or may not end the residency with an art show or specific project, it depends on the program. Residencies operate worldwide and vary in their amenities. Some have kilns and printmaking equipment, others are much more simple. It just depends on what you are looking for. Residency costs vary from being all expenses paid to subsidized costs to very expensive. You have to do your research when finding one. 

Last February/March, I had a small list of residencies in mind to apply to. I was mostly interested in a couple in Barcelona, as well as one in Joshua Tree National Park and another in the Caribbean. During that time of the year, I am usually working on Valentine's Day orders, taxes and planning, so I missed the deadlines on all of these. I found one in Cádiz, Spain and was instantly mesmerized by the location after looking up photos online. I had to go to this one and this one only. Cádiz is on a narrow strip of land, almost like an island. It looks out on the open Atlantic and resides south of Portugal. 

The esplanade near the Gran Catedral. 

The esplanade near the Gran Catedral. 

We Have Overcomplicated Things , paper, ink, chair, bulb, 2014.

We Have Overcomplicated Things, paper, ink, chair, bulb, 2014.

I felt like the happiest person on earth when I was accepted to the Linea de Costa residency. It was the first residency I applied to. I received an email three weeks later stating "we find your proposal very interesting for Linea de Costa's goals." They later told me that the program is very competitive and receives many applicants. This, of course, made me feel honored and thankful to be one of the selected. The image above of my installation, We Have Overcomplicated Things, was one of the artworks I applied with. The program director really loved this one. 

One aspect of a residency is how many artists you will be there with. I have heard of some residencies hosting a single artist at a time, but I believe most are small to larger groups. Linea de Costa hosts 3 artists at a time with myself, Amy Podmore a professor of art at Williams College in Massachusetts and Juyoung Lee, a South Korean artist, there for the month of November. Both artists turned out to be amazing people. They were creative, fun and super inspiring to be around. I felt very lucky to have been there with these two. 

The view from my work desk in the studio.

The view from my work desk in the studio.

The location was really something else. I looked out on this view everyday, though sometimes it was overcast and stormy. It made me feel like I was working on a boat. I can't tell you how much having the sea this close makes me happy. The apartment I was set up in was very nice, but just did not compare with this view. For more on the studio space and apartment see my first post in this series

If you're interested in an art residency, you can look them up on the following sites:

For some great articles on finding, preparing for and funding your residency:

One of the biggest things I took away from this residency was letting go of old habits and stale ideas. There's nothing like a change of location to reinvigorate your senses. If you have any questions about residencies, feel free to ask me in the comments below. 

Stay tuned for the next post in this series!

Textures and Patterns of Cádiz

There's no shortage of texture and pattern inspiration in Cádiz. From old and crumbling to new and shiny, beauty is found everywhere here.

Love this scene, but what really gets me are the swirling marks in the white area.

Love this scene, but what really gets me are the swirling marks in the white area.

The corrugated roof is perfectly dirty and aged.

The corrugated roof is perfectly dirty and aged.

There's something about the shades of greens and blues in the window above.

There's something about the shades of greens and blues in the window above.

I could have done a whole post on the doors here!

I could have done a whole post on the doors here!

Yes, even the gray brick street caught my eye.

Yes, even the gray brick street caught my eye.

Horse door knockers.

Horse door knockers.

Hand knockers

Hand knockers

Inside a historic bull fighter's bar. So much to look at in this place.

Inside a historic bull fighter's bar. So much to look at in this place.

The prettiest chainlink fence.

The prettiest chainlink fence.

Ah, the pattern of these stones in the plaza near my house are mesmerizing.

Ah, the pattern of these stones in the plaza near my house are mesmerizing.

Spotty pink bricks on the studio rooftop with moss growing between.

Spotty pink bricks on the studio rooftop with moss growing between.

Linea de Costa Art Residency in Cádiz, Spain Pt. 1

This is my fifth day in Cádiz, Spain and I'm in love with this city. I felt right at home. The pace, the food, coffee, air, ocean and people are magnificent to say the least. I battled through some jet lag for the first few days, but I'm doing great now. 

The studio view from the huge rooftop terrace.

The studio view from the huge rooftop terrace.

I'm out here for the Linea de Costa art residency in the Espacio de Creación Contemporánea. It's a beautiful marble-filled gallery next door to the Universidad de Cádiz. The artist studios view the ocean with waves pounding the ancient city walls and boats sailing by. I've always dreamt of a seaside studio and I always dreamed of studying abroad when I was in college, so this is pretty surreal and satisfying. I feel spoiled to be here.

Espacio de Creación Contemporánea (ECCO)

Espacio de Creación Contemporánea (ECCO)

The grand stairwell at ECCO.

The grand stairwell at ECCO.

An installation in the atrium at ECCO.

An installation in the atrium at ECCO.

The building I'm working in is a former military barrack built in the 18th century. It was renovated and now houses a beautiful museum and gallery space. The gallery where I will be showing is gorgeous. I'll show you photos in a couple of weeks.

My workspace in the art studio.

My workspace in the art studio.

The other artist here is fantastic. She has a few really interesting projects going from textiles to video and masking tape. It's inspiring to have her in the room with me. She's from the US, Massachussets specifically, where she is an art school professor. We're having a good time hanging out and creating. 

The local art supply store and their dog.

The local art supply store and their dog.

The art supply store, Piccolita, has a lot of great supplies. The owner and her daughter were so helpful and friendly. It's in the same square as the Museo de Cádiz and maybe 8 short blocks from the studio. 

The interior exterior of my apartment.

The interior exterior of my apartment.

The small, yet perfect little kitchen.

The small, yet perfect little kitchen.

I'm making a lot of comparisons with the States while here, especially in my art making process. I love how the living spaces are so much smaller. We're always looking for more and more room in the US, when we don't really need that much space. Eggs aren't refrigerated here (as in much of the world outside the US) and instead of dryers, you hang your clothes to dry on a line. 

The beautiful colors of Cádiz.

The beautiful colors of Cádiz.

So many boats.

So many boats.

Little A-frame

Little A-frame

I have been sketching and playing with ideas for my installation at ECCO. I also created this little A-frame house in about a day and a half. It was fun playing architect! 

My installation at ECCO opens on November 27th. 

Gotta get back to work!