Courtney Johnston, Director of the Dowse Art Museum, will chair a panel of four local and visiting artists who will share their experiences from international artist residencies. They are Marc Brandenburg (Germany), the 2016 Goethe Institut artist in residence; Etienne de France (France), the 2016 Te Whare Hera artist in residence alongside New Zealanders, Sian Torrington and Erica Sklenars who have recently returned from residencies in Asia.
The Council’s Arts Portfolio Leader, Councillor Ray Ahipene-Mercer strongly supports the value in International Residencies for local artists. “These residencies are more than being able to work on your art uninterrupted for a few months; it’s an exchange of ideas, culture and often friendship.”
International Connections: Artist Residency Forum gives artists an opportunity to speak about their own experiences and for other artists to listen and find out how they can join the residency ranks.
This year artists will discuss why they participate in residencies, their achievements and challenges, what they leave behind and what they take away, and how they help position Wellington as an internationally connected capital city.
This is the second annual residency forum, the first, held in 2015, heralded the beginning of a residency network. Wellington City Council, Asia NZ Foundation, Massey University, Goethe Institut, French Embassy and Randall Cottage have partnered to support artists, cross promote and share resources so that residency programmes don’t happen in isolation.
In September 2015 for three months, performance and video artist Erica Sklenars flew to China, Beijing for her Red Gate Residency.
“My three months in China were a whirlwind journey through the thriving worlds of the artist-run art scenes, and the experimental, underground and pop music scenes.” Erica says.
I found these communities very welcoming and open to collaborations, and was almost overwhelmed with opportunities to participate. It was amazing to see this in such a huge city, and my experience has informed my practice in ways I am only beginning to understand.”
Each year, Wellington City Council and the Asia NZ foundation select a Wellington-based artist to take part in a residency at the Red Gate Gallery, Beijing. To find out more or to apply go to wellington.govt.nz/beijing-exchange
The forum is presented in partnership with Wellington City Council, Goethe-Institut and the French Embassy.