2000, Anthony Campuzano

2000

Anthony Campuzano

I fell deeply in love and I developed my studio practice during my summer at Skowhegan in 2000. The love didn’t last but I often say I learned how to be an artist during my summer at Skowhegan. In 2000 I unfolded my things and pinned my inspirations up on the wall of my studio with the big windows in Upper Barn. I learned so much taking walks, thinking, opening up, listening to others, and being so in love.

I constantly am inspired and challenged in my work by those I met the summer of 2000 at Skowhegan. I use the lessons I learned there everyday in my studio, recalling them when I am in dialogue with my ideas and trying to figure out how to articulate the ways, needs and means to go forward (and look back). The best summer of my life.

2001, Betsy Alwin

2001

Betsy Alwin

The Saturday morning critiques were one of my favorite things. More than just seeing what people were doing, they were a way to discuss studio thought processes and share discoveries. I remember walking in the afternoon light around to different studios as a group and feeling so connected, so in the present moment. It was such a generous time.

2003, Hong Zhang

2003

Hong Zhang

Attending Skowhegan truly changed my perspective as a Chinese graduate student in the US. There were lots of first time experiences in Skowhegan: being with 65 artists on a daily basis, sharing meals and bedrooms, learning fresco painting and making an outdoor site specific installation, eating lobster at the last dinner and marshmallows around campfire, the costume party and talent show.

My biggest challenge was making my first outdoor installation using nontraditional materials. I went on a “dumpster trip” with a group of artists and found an old children’s school desk. I let it sit in my studio for a while because I did not know what to do with it. One day while walking, I saw fallen branches in the woods and discovered a green lawn behind Bernarda Shahn’s studio. I was inspired by their beauty and shared my idea of creating an outdoor installation with resident faculty Nari Ward during a studio visit. He encouraged me to pursue creating the installation even though I had never done one before. I spent one month collecting the fallen branches from the forest and using a little wagon to transport them back to the lawn behind Bernarda’s studio. A week before the residency ended, I invited my peers and faculty to see the finished work and welcomed their comments, including Bernarda who came near the end of the residency.

Skowhegan residency provided me with a time and space to think and work outside my comfort zone and challenged me to take risks and grew as a professional artist.  

2009, Ester Partegás

2009

Ester Partegás

I loved to walk the road that connects the cabins to the main Campus. I loved doing that walk alone and with people, I loved it in daylight and in the dark at night. There was something transformative about it—a daily ritual that reminded me that we were in the middle of the woods, and it always felt magical!

We had a few participants that were always ready to dress up and start a dancing party anywhere. They often showed up in my cabin in their best improvised costumes. They would come, put on music, dance, have a quick drink, and leave. I loved those spontaneous visits!

It probably was their warm up for bigger, more secretive or more exciting parties somewhere else.

2013, Lindsay Preston Zappas

2013

Lindsay Preston Zappas

The instant openness and care that the community has for each other at Skowhegan is a lesson in humility, transparency, and mutual support. These are things that Skowhegan perfectly modeled that I’ve not only tried to bring forward into my local art community in Los Angeles, but also adopted as a mantra for my daily existence in the world.