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The American Institute of Thoughts and Feelings Residency Program is located on-site at the residence-as-institute / institute-as-residence house in Tucson, Arizona. The program is in a pilot period as 2020 marks its first year open to public applicants. The program is open to emerging and established artists, writers, performers, and healers of all disciplines who wish to develop or complete a project during their stay. Residency lengths range from 10-30 days.

Image: Works from Justin T. Nalley’s 2019 Winter Residency. 

Application Deadline: Sunday, February 9th 11:59pm PST

Application fee:
$7.00 until February 2nd 11:59pm PST, afterwards $15.00

Venmo: @institute-thoughts-feelings
Paypal: thoughtsfeelingsinfo@gmail.com

Residency period: 1 March – 31 August 2020

Application guidelines:
Please pay the application fee via venmo or paypal and send an email to thoughtsfeelingsinfo@gmail.com with the following :

1.  Subject “___NAME___ AITF residency application”
2.  Name, pronouns, city of residence, discipline
3.  Top three preferred timeslots with length of stay
3.  Letter of interest
4.  Link to online portfolio (website, instagram, vimeo, etc)
    OR attach a .pdf with 5-10 work samples
5.  (optional but helpful) Attach CV or resume

Accommodations: Residents are provided with a private bedroom in a three-bedroom house that is furnished with a twin bed and a small writing desk. Residents will have access to a shared bathroom, living room, a large clean communal kitchen, laundry, and wifi. Residents will also have access to the home’s outdoor space which includes a covered patio, fire pit, sculpture garden, and a 10x15’ uninsulated garage for studio work.

Collaborators, partners, dogs, and children are not unwelcome, though accommodation capacity is limited and resident groups needing additional sleeping arrangements would first require a conversation.

Please note that there is a sweet long-haired dog that lives at the house.

Program fees:

10 day residency­ – $150.00
14 day residency – $200.00
1 month residency – $360.00

There are a limited number of slots available for artists seeking a residency opportunity without the financial means. Please indicate in your application if you are seeking a total or partial fee waiver.

Other costs: Residents provide their own transportation, food, and supplies during their stay. Transportation from the Tucson airport can be arranged if needed.

About program fees: AITF is artist-run and a labor of love. The project is an experiment which continues to shift, react, and grow. The residency program fees are intended to help offset the costs of running the project at large, which thus far have been paid for out of pocket by the artists and organizers involved in AITF since its conception in Fall 2017. We hope to one day achieve a program that is fully funded and able to offer stipends to residents, but for now this iteration is what’s within our means.

Offerings: What residents are provided with will largely depend on the goals and desires described in individual applications.

All residents will be given time and space, likely sunshine, documentation of their work, social media coverage (with consent), and will be included in a publication to be released after the season’s conclusion.

AITF is open to facilitating programs that are of interest to residents within our mutual capacity. This may include an offsite project, reading, workshop, lecture, performance, community dinner, studio visit, or open studio hours. With that, process, failure, respite, conversation, organic development, and wonderment are higher on our list of values than productivity and capital. There is no obligation from either party to create a quantifiable outcome during residents’ stays, though there is certainly possibility.

What to Expect: The tone of a resident’s visit may vary depending on the season and programming schedule, which mainly runs mid-October through mid-June. The house is shared with AITF director Annie Swiderski, who in addition to running the project maintains a part-time job and a personal studio practice. Residents can expect a fair amount of solitary time during the day, with possible invitations to go on a walk, share a meal, go skateboarding, or attend a dance party, art event, or other Tucson gathering in the evenings. At any given time two resident quarters may be filled and other friends of the project may be hanging around the house.

If there is an AITF event taking place, residents are invited to participate in set up if they’d like to help. However, there is no expectation for residents to provide free labor during their visit or to give the gift of an artwork after their stay.

A note about summer months: Tucson summers are extreme weather, sometimes reaching temperatures over 110º F. During the summer residents will be given the opportunity to do studio work inside the house, which has central AC. July, August, and September are Tucson’s monsoon season, which are hot but also magical in their own way with dramatic sunsets, rain fed rock pools, and shifting humidity throughout the day. During the summer Tucsonans who are able tend to stay indoors throughout the day and go out in the early mornings and at night.

The Area: AITF is located in the Rincon Heights neighborhood of Tucson, just east of downtown, south of the University of Arizona, and on the traditional land of the Tohono O’odham people. Tucson is located one hour north of Nogales, MX, and two hours southeast of Phoenix, AZ (by car).

Geographically Tucson is conducive to biking and walking and the house is centrally located close to downtown and public transportation, though this depends on the season. There is on-site and on-street parking for residents who are able to bring their vehicle.

Accessibility: The house is an old 1940s adobe that is not ADA accessible. It is one story, though there is one step up to the entry doors in the front and the back. The driveway is gravel, the indoor floors are wood, and the back patio is dry-laid brick. The bathroom is small with a bathtub. The basement gallery can only be accessed by a steep set of stairs from the outside of the home. There is currently no handrail.

Our Mission: The American Institute of Thoughts and Feelings is an artist-run experimental project space located in Tucson, Arizona. The project and its constellational branches seek to examine and reflect upon human sentiment through research, inquiry, and community engagement. AITF aims to provide an accessible platform for contemporary art to residents of Tucson and the Sonoran Desert region.

The institute grounds include a gallery space with rotating exhibitions and a sculpture garden that can be viewed from the adjacent alleyway. AITF is located at a private residence and is only open during events and by appointment.

For any questions regarding accessibility or other program details, please email Annie at thoughtsfeelingsinfo@gmail.com


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