Friday, May 1, 2009

Homeless Chateau Artist Residency Program

Ground is broken and the foundation laid for the Homeless Chateau artist residency program, here in Beacon, New York.  Set in a private garden in the Hudson Valley, fifty miles north of NYC, the Homeless Chateau is ten minutes walk from Dia:Beacon, fifteen minutes from Beacon's Metro North train station, and five minutes from Main Street shops, restaurants and galleries.   

Artists-in-residence will live and work inside the 4 x 4 x 8-foot structure for up to a week at a time.  The Homeless Chateau is expected to be the smallest fully self-contained artist residency structure in the world.  It contains a sleeping mat, single-burner propane camp stove, shelves for storage and a (non-stinky) chemical toilet.  Power is provided directly to the structure and water is available from an outdoor spigot, nearby.  Artists must bring their own sleeping bag, food and art supplies.  Filtered drinking water is provided.

The Homeless Chateau is a three season structure with one four-foot square window and one four-foot square door for cooling and light.  Both are fitted with insect screens.  A compact electric fan is provided for the warmer months and an electric heater for the cooler months.  The structure is located in a shady part of the garden to aid natural cooling, and is also protected by an 8 x 12-foot tarpaulin.

Artists-in-residence have access to a shower inside the property's main structure, a converted 1900 school gymnasium.  There is an option to rent a 600 square-foot day studio in the main structure for $50/day ($350 for a weeklong residency).  This includes access to a utility sink, toilet, washer and dryer.  There is no charge for living and working in the Homeless Chateau.  At some point in the future, it is hoped that grants will cover the day studio fee and that stipends may also be offered. 

Coming soon:  The origins of a tiny residency program, and polyurethaning the modular components to make them ready for assembly outdoors.  Stay tuned!

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