Searching for grants

Money – I think this a topic many artists and people in the arts hate talking about. The reason is mostly because of the difficulty of attaining it. I have problems with getting it for the residency as well, and it pains me that the artists invited must pay some of the costs. I’m working as hard as I can to reduce these costs to a minimum.

Below are some funding resources. These can be helpful even for those artists who will not participate in the residency this year.

Of course, good places to start are local Arts Councils, Associations and Foundations, local Polish organizations (i.e. Polish-American associations). If any of you have good sources or leads, please add them in the comments and I will try to add them to this list. The list below is of course tailored mostly to the needs of artists going on residencies, but not exclusively. I hope it is of help for everyone.

ChangingRoom – Big online database

Trust for Civil Society in Central and Eastern Europe

Foundation Center

Kulturkontakt Nord Mobility Program

Lab for Culture

Open Art Projects

European Cultural Foundation Mobility Grants

Andy Warhol Foundation (may be for institutions only)

If I find anything else, I will update this post. Please let me know if any of the links aren’t working.

P.S. – If any of you have good funding resources for NGOs in Europe, specifically Poland, I would be much obliged.

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One of the most interesting Polish painters from Podlaskie

As I mentioned previously, I would like this blog to serve not only as information about the residence in Bialystok, but also function as a place for information about contemporary Polish artists, Polish art in general, Polish culture, music, food, as well as regional information about Bialystok and Podlaskie province – of course, stuff you won’t find in most guidebooks or art books (in English).

Today, I present Leon Tarasewicz, one of the most interesting contemporary Polish painters. Leon Tarasewicz comes from the village Walily in the Podlaskie province located near the eastern border with Belarus. He was born on March 14, 1957 and continues to reside in Walily. He studied at the Fine Art Academy in Warsaw (1979-1984) and debuted in Galeria Foksal in 1984. Since then, his work has been widely exhibited in Poland and around the world.

Tarasewicz’s work challenges the ideas of what painting and art are. His paintings are monumental, architectural installations, where the viewer is not a passive viewer – we are able to physically experience the “paintings”. These works exceed the traditional understanding of painting. In his work, painting in not limited to the canvas – it covers floors (like at the Venice Biennale in 2001), pillars, ceilings, entire walls. It isn’t flat, but three-dimensional. Some installations are like mazes, where the viewer literally gets lost in the painting – or maybe the comparison should be to a fun house; the artist uses the architecture of his paintings along with mirrors to completely disorient the viewer.

There is a lot more I could write about this artist, but I think this is enough for today.

I hope this inspires you in your own work.

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Applications for summer 2010 AIR in

So, I believe I have received the last of the applications for the summer artist residence, which will take place in July and August. I have emailed everyone whose application I have received, so that means that if you sent in an application, but haven’t received a confirmation of receipt from me, there are only two possible reasons:

  • a. I haven’t received your application or
  • b. my email didn’t get to you.

Either way, you should get in touch with me.

I must admit the decision will not be an easy one. There are many great artists who make really interesting work with very compelling reasons for wanting to come to Bialystok. Alas, a decision must be made, and 6 artists will be invited to come to Bialystok for the summer. Soon the committee will confer and I will inform ALL applicants of whatever decision is made by February 15, and then with the permission of the chosen artists, I will post who will be coming in July.

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Receiving applications

I have been receiving applications all week, and I’m writing to everyone whose application I have received. If you haven’t received an email from me, that means I haven’t received your application yet.

The committee will meet at the beginning of February and I will email everyone informing of the decision in the first half of February. I will also post the accepted artists on here. There are many really interesting proposals, so the decision will not be an easy one.

I also hope to hear about a grant I applied for sometime in February. Hopefully that means that I will be informing the accepted artists that the residence cost is lower than they had expected.

Keep your fingers crossed.

Soon I will post about Leon Tarasewicz, a painter from Podlasie, and Sarakina, a band from Bialystok.

Sign up for email updates so you won’t miss information about the residence. You’ll also learn about Polish artists, musicians, food and culture.

Leon Tarasewicz with one of his paintings.

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A photographer from Bialystok

I would like this blog to not only provide information about the Art Factory Bialystok residence, but also about Polish culture, music, food, and artists. I’ve already mentioned the Warsaw Village Band.

Today I am featuring a photographer from Bialystok, Jedrzej Wojnar. Jedrzej really has a wonderful eye. I met him in a bit circuitous way when I was looking for a wedding photographer. Jedrzej photographed my wedding, and my husband and I to this day love looking at the photographs. The reason I hired Jedrzej was not because of his wealth of experience as a wedding photographer, but because I really loved his artistic photos and I thought he had an eye for light, which is a rare gift, indeed.

Jedrzej received his MA in Sociology from the University of Bialystok. He does photography full time photographing weddings commercially, working for the local daily Gazeta Wyborcza, as well as on his own artistic projects like BRAMA. BRAMA (which means gate) is a project documenting an old neighborhood of Bialystok – the old 19th c. wooden houses, the cobblestone streets, etc. – which may not exist in the near future. Unfortunately, the link to that project online is no longer functioning, but here are links to his site and photo blog.

What do you think of his work? Are there any Polish artists you are interested in learning about?

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Only 3 days left

Just a reminder that there only 3 more days left to apply for the Art Factory Bialystok residence this summer. The deadline is a postmark deadline, which means you must mail the application by Jan. 16. If for some reason you cannot make it by that deadline, but you really, really want to apply, please email me. I will probably give you a few more days.

Two more things:

1. I am in the process for applying for a grant that I hope will help lower the costs for artists this year. Please keep your fingers crossed.

2. I’ve decided to nix the trip to Biebrza National Park, and instead we will go to Warsaw for three days. We will visit museums and hopefully meet some interesting people in the Polish art world. I think this will be much more useful and educational.

Soon I will feature some contemporary Polish artists.

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