Light Grey Art Lab is a community oriented arts organization dedicated to bringing practicing artists together to exhibit, collaborate, learn and share.
Because of your involvement and dedication to the world of art and design, you have been invited to join a small team of hand-selected creators and academics on a journey of discovery, collaboration and inspiration to one of the most inspiring and fragile landscapes in the world. Dipping into the Arctic Circle, Iceland's landscape is a paradoxically gorgeous mixture of fire and ice, home to fragile (but hardy) varieties of lichen, bird-life, and glaciers .
This year's 5 night residency will take place on August 13, 2014 through August 18, 2014 in Southern Iceland at the Ysta-Bæli farmstead near the city of Vik. We have rented an old farm-house as the home-base of our exploratory journey, where we will share concepts, conversations and experiences.
We want to invite you to join us in a collaborative journey that incorporates learning, discovery and exploration amongst a rugged, majestic landscape as create and stretch our creative practices amidst the landscape. Not only are we hoping that your experience renews a sense of wonder in the way you make, but it can also influence the creative processes and considerations of your students, colleagues and peers. We have an opportunity to learn from each other's practices in a collaborative environment, engage in rich discussions about our work and about the world we live in.
Light Grey Art Lab founders Lindsay Nohl and Chris Hajny have traveled to Iceland twice in the last several years on a journey to explore their own creative practice and to be influenced by the landscape. Each journey has inspired new perspectives, not only in creating, but on the fragile nature of places like Iceland's shrinking glacial formations, a hardy culture, and an ancient history. Our art and our lives have been transformed by what we've learned from our travels to Iceland. We also wish to reference the hard work and studies of individuals like James Balog, the National Geographic photographer-turned-scientist, whose interdisciplinary approach to landscape has inspired him to be an advocate of the space, as well as how we see the world.
The environment in Iceland is entrancing on a grand, and primal level, and we wish to bring leaders in the arts world together here to learn and share thoughts on creativity, problem solving and ideation, and learn more about why we need to use our power as creators in art, illustration and design to change minds and make an impact upon our return.
Our trip will include 6 days in Iceland, starting in Reykjavik, Iceland's capital city. We soon depart for the rugged terrain and head to an old farmhouse where we will spend the next 5 nights creating, sharing processes and making day trips to some of Iceland's most majestic and secluded spots.
The southern area of Iceland is packed with natural wonders such as the famous (and well trodden) Blue Lagoon, Geysir, and Gulfoss... as well as off the beaten tracks of land that lead directly up to the tongues of Vatnajokull, Iceland's largest glacier. Crystal clear water breaks upon black basalt beaches and volcanic landscapes are softened with mounds of spongy green moss and lichen.
We have rented an old farmhouse on the south side of Iceland where we will host lively discussion about process and creating, as well as host studio time for those individuals that are inspired to create. Family style meals will be prepared and we will be renting two 4 x 4 vehicles to take day trips out to the wilderness where we'll have plenty of time to explore and experience Iceland to it's fullest.
Transportation to and from the airport will be provided and we will be providing a schedule of activities to all involved before the trip as well as information on how to prepare for your trip so you have a comfortable and incredible time.
Below is a gallery of images of the space we will be staying and a few images of the surrounding landscape. You can see the set-up of our accommodations, with full-kitchen, 2 bathrooms, and a series of bedrooms with varying sleeping arrangements.
How we learn and create
Part of the experience we are looking to create involves a willingness to embrace experimentation, sharing concepts and conversation, and engaging in new ways of ideating. As part of the program, we have set out to include some incredible objectives for our trip.
• Each morning we'll join for coffee, tea and a continental breakfast as we prepare for the day's trip. Bagged lunches will be prepared before departing and we'll meet to chat about the day's activities.
• As we start our day, we'll head out on a day trip to a different exotic location. These will include hikes to a variety of secluded natural wonders, where we'll spend the day exploring, sketching, and experiencing. How you spend this time will be up to you, and we'll be providing a series of optional exercises or prompts for those people wishing to challenge themselves.
• As part of our exploratory journey, we will be recording (audio and video) our explorations, conversations, and the results of our collaborations. We wish to capture the spontaneity of some of our moments as well our reflections on the process as it unfolds.
• We will return in the evening to a family style dinner, followed by a round-table discussion and sharing about the day's events.
• Throughout the week each artist will be asked to lead a casual mini workshop on ideating, sketching, techniques, or another personal process with the rest of the group. Our objective with this is to expand each other's practice and to explore within our creating.
• The rest of the evening is open for creating, relaxing or otherwise!
• Transportation will be available for all participants to and from Reykjavik on our start and end dates.
The cost of a spot in our residency is $1300 USD.
The price of the workshop covers all meals, transportation, gas, and lodging for 6 days and 5 nights in Iceland. The airfare is not covered and is the responsibility of the guest. We recommend Iceland Air as they have great fares, but there may also be other airlines that offer great deals to Reykjavik.
What to expect:
• We will be sharing an old farm-house with a variety of sleeping options. In Iceland, it is normal for most guest houses to request that visitors bring sleeping bags, and this is how we intend on traveling. Please bring your sleeping bag. The trip itself will be cozy and simple, but comfortable. All guests will be provided their own simple bed / mattress and rooms will be double or triple occupancy. We will try our best to accommodate room-mate requests. Creative couples will most likely receive the small rooms with double beds, and individual travelers will be in shared rooms, with single beds. More information will be provided upon sign-up.
• Iceland is quite rugged, so we suggest bringing a variety of warm, layered clothes including a waterproof jacket and boots.
• Since we are right about at the Arctic Circle, it will be light out about 22 of 24 hours.
• The weather ranges from 50 to 70 decrees depending on our location, and the temperature drops at night and when we are near large patches of ice.
• We suggest bringing portable sketching materials, a water bottle, sunscreen, sun glasses / hat, a flash-light and a small first-aid kit and sleeping bag. It is also helpful to carry a watch, as cell phones are fickle and you may not want to carry them with you when we go out (it is expensive to call internationally and the reception isn't that great).
• If you decide to bring any electronics, remember an electrical outlet adapter! (Or few!) We suggest bringing any photo equipment that you may want to carry.
• If you would like to know more about the history of the areas we visit, the Lonely Planet Guide to Iceland is a great resource. There are also many free guides around Reykjavik - as Iceland has a great program for visitors and they provide comprehensive guides for free because of their healthy tourism industry. We will also be providing some information on the spaces and places we visit along the way.
• We will help facilitate all schedules including arrivals, departures, programming and schedule for our tours.
• In the weeks before our journey we'll provide all participants with a travel guide and resources list in order to help prepare for the trip.
• The cost of the trip is non-refundable, so please feel free to ask any questions.
Giving Back to the Community
As part of this collaboration, we will be hosting an exhibition at Light Grey Art Lab celebrating the process and the outcome from our time in Iceland including a published work about the ideas, process, sketches, and experimentation that came out of our time together. This includes artwork created while on our trip, as well as artwork created afterward that was inspired by your time abroad. The schedule for this exhibition will be provided shortly after registration and we will give you more information on dates and times.
We wish to host a screening of the movie Chasing Ice - featuring the work of photographer and naturalist James Balog, at Light Grey Art Lab following our journey as well, and will be reaching out to contact several climate-change specialists to hear their perspective via our podcast. Since we host programming at Light Grey Art Lab that incorporates an educational aspect of making, we wish to begin conversations renewing our practice through this experience.
We will also be hosting a series of podcasts created during our stay that features audio-diaries and reflections of the participants, which we will ask you to be a part of while we travel. These will be shared on the internet as well in the hopes that we may share our experiences with our own communities and those beyond our reach.
The idea is that, as creative forces, we may be able to learn and be inspired by each other in ways we may never have had the chance, through working together, exploring and learning.
As innovators and instructors, we have the ability to experience this landscape like many people can not, through physical and artistic exploration as well as reflection through our creative and academic work -- with the potential to share our knowledge and our visions of this shrinking landscape.
Below you'll see the location of our farm-house (in pink), along with a more detailed map of our exploration. We will be traveling by 4x4 and will be on the road the majority of the day, and returning by night. We have a prime location for the experience, as it's centrally located between many of Iceland's wonderful natural landscapes.
Thank you, in advance, for your interest. Please let us know if you have any questions about the experience, or anything else and we would be happy to accommodate.
please email: firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions
We hope you can join us for this year's Iceland Residency Program. To secure your spot in the program, please send a request to Lindsay Nohl: email@example.com.
Founder, Light Grey Art Lab