By Yaddo staff
Yaddo, the artists’ community in Saratoga Springs, New York traveled to Charlotte, North Carolina on May 22 as part of an effort to extend its reach across the country and reaffirm its commitment to serving artists working in a range of disciplines. Yaddo artist Beverly McIver and staffer Steve Dennin presented “Yaddo: The Residency Experience” at The North Carolina Dance Theatre’s beautiful facility. The enthusiastic group included visual artists, novelists, a playwright and a performer, some well-established and others emerging, from across the region, as well as a former Yaddo guest, the poet and writer Dannye Powell and a father of a current guest, Mitch Mitcham.
Organized in cooperation with NCDT, along with the McColl Center for Visual Art and the Charlotte Arts & Science Council, representatives from all three organizations attended the event, which concluded with a reception featuring delicious buttermilk biscuits, stuffed with VA ham. These local partners will continue to work with Yaddo to encourage artists from the Charlotte area to apply for a residency, around an upcoming August 1 deadline. For detailed information, go to www.yaddo.org.
McIver says of her visit to Charlotte:
“Going to Charlotte to speak with artist about applying to YADDO was terrific. The artists were quite receptive and asked lots of questions. I believe the presentation helped take away the mystery of applying and made it feasible for artist to imagine themselves at YADDO. I loved sharing my personal experiences about being at YADDO. It’s a magical place. I described YADDO as a place that takes care of you. You are fed three meals a day, given a lovely private room and a private studio in which to create your work. I also talked about how inspiring it is to be around other artists who feel the same passion for their craft as you feel for yours. I’ve been to many artist colonies all over the country, and YADDO is by far my favorite. I love the location, the chef is world class and the work spaces are inspiring. The only downfall to attending YADDO, is that if you eat the delicious desserts that are cooked every night, you will likely gain a few pounds. The crowd laughed as if they thought that was a fair price to pay for the experience. I think that artist in Charlotte will apply to YADDO. I think it’s a viable option for them and that they will take advantage of it.”
The presentation in Charlotte was made possible with support from The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, which awarded Yaddo a $125,000 grant to fund residencies of four to eight weeks for eight artists, working in a variety of mediums, and drawn from eight cities where Knight Foundation invests. In addition to Charlotte, the locations include Akron, Ohio; Macon, Georgia; San Jose, California; St. Paul, Minnesota; Detroit, Michigan; Miami, Florida; and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The artists will be given private living and studio space at Yaddo, and, if needed, financial aid to help cover costs such as lost income, transportation, and childcare – expenses that might otherwise prevent an artist from accepting the offer of a visit to Yaddo.