Free Artist Residency Campaign

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Above: two of the properties being considered for the Artist Residency.

A two-month long KickStarter campaign slated for mid-February, 2016 intends to raise $500,000 USD from 500,000 artists contributing $1 each. Appropriate property will be purchased outright. The Artist Residency will be FREE for one or two month stays for anyone who donates $1 during the campaign.

Properties under consideration include a guest house on an island and an inn near the Rocky Mountains. Both sleep around twelve people. Writers, painters and musicians and other Artists in Residence would be responsible for transportation to and from the location and for their food.

This could be a viable model for future acquisitions by artists for a variety of purposes including exhibition and performance spaces, recording and art studios, and housing for elderly artists.

Stay up-to-date by joining the FaceBook group for The Black Dot Museum Artist Residency.

February 15, 2016
I’m working on the KickStarter text and associated image.

Normal History Vol 168 by David Lester

$500,000 USD

Free Artist Residency for writers, musicians and artists who donate during this campaign.


This campaign intends to raise $500,000 USD from 500,000 artists contributing $1 each to buy a guesthouse or inn to be run as a Free Artist Residency.

My name is Jean Smith. I’m the singer in the underground rock duo Mecca Normal – a participant in D-I-Y culture since 1984.

“Fiercely independent, consistently evolving creatively, always challenging assumptions, hers and our own, it’s no exaggeration to say Jean Smith has influenced generations of musicians with her band, literary rock duo Mecca Normal.” – Newtopia Magazine

I am a good egg who has agitated on many fronts and aimed to inspire others for over 30 years.

In this visionary social experiment, your $1 donation goes towards the outright purchase of a $500,000 USD Artist Residency where you can stay for up to two months to work on an art, music, film or writing project.

Your $1 donation entitles you to stay at the Artist Residency free of charge. Artists are responsible for their own food, transportation and basic chores. Subject to space available. No application fee. Return visits are encouraged.

There are two things.

1.) The Campaign
2.) The Artist Residency

Two separate visionary social experiments.

1.) Attempting to get 500,000 individuals to donate $1 to buy property.
2.) Buying the property and running it as a free Artist Residency.

More than likely this campaign to raise $500,000 to buy the guesthouse will fail. It requires a certain amount of inspiration to see that it could actually work, and that it could be repeated elsewhere to create performance, rehearsal, studio and exhibition spaces. It could even turn out to be a way to create permanent housing for elderly artists.

The viability of this campaign is hinged to three things
1.) effectively communicating an unrealistic and confusing concept
2.) an inspired reaction = sharing via social media
3.) securing 500,000 $1 donations

Yes, it all seems quite impossible, but yet… I think it should be attempted. What I’m talking about is really just a bunch of land with some buildings on it that artists can stay in while they work on various projects. Why does it have to be nearly impossible to have a place like this and the time needed to create?

Certainly the voices of reason bring up inherent problems associated with buying a guesthouse to run as an Artist Residency.

Q. How will general maintenance, taxes and ongoing expenses be paid for?
A. There could be one room held for paying visitors. The two properties I’m considering are both on Trip Advisor, so there will be travelers who find the property that way.

Q. Where is this?
A. Properties under consideration include a guesthouse on a small island and an inn near the Rocky Mountains.

Q. Are you going to live there?
A. No, I’m going to continue doing all the things I normally do. It’s a building, people. Go and stay in it! Various arrangements for necessary management will be explored.

Q. What if…?
A. Let’s figure some of these things out as they arise. It is a work in progress, I admit that. Of course 500,000 people can’t all go at once. An application and scheduling process will have to take place. The main thing is that it will be free to apply and free to stay.

Q. Is it going to be owned as a non-profit or… ?
A. I will be the legal owner. It will be legally left to an appropriate art or activist community.

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