West Harlem Art Fund’s Visual Muze is a unique storytelling residency and retreat. It provides visual artists, performance artists, multi-media designers, and writers the opportunity to explore narrative forms within collaborative projects, works in progress, guest lectures, and crafts. Participants can choose to work independently or in teams to create original works in print, film, public performance, or digitally for a culminating exhibition. Process, creative strategy, and inspiration will be emphasized. See quotes from Visual Muze artists on their time in the residency below as well as photo highlights from West Harlem Art Fund’s 2020 season on Governors Island.

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2020 Residents:

Visual Artists
Kraig Blue
Dario Mohr
Marie E. Saint-Cyr (pictured, Innovative Space)

Hilary Brown
Yehuda Hyman
Kate Pettit

Welcome to Harlem

Landscape Design
Austin Arrington

Justin Michel (Exalt Youth Intern)

Conrad Levenson (pictured, Personal Goal Post)

Visual Muze

The opportunity to be an artist-in-residence on Governors Island was a great and nurturing experience for me this past summer during the Epidemic. The natural setting, on an island surrounded by water, standing barefoot amidst the great old trees in Nolan Square inspired me to create a dance/storytelling work drawing from ancient Jewish mysticism.”
Yehuda Hyman, Dancer/Choreographer

Governors Island is an oasis away from the city, an incredible sanctuary to dance and focus on the work without distractions or anxiety from the ongoing pandemic. Highly recommended for rejuvenation and inspiration!”
Kate Pettit, Katharine Pettit Creative - KPC

Our collective’s residency on Governors Island has been a truly reflective and rewarding experience. Our creative work has been progressing through deep exploration and discourse, all informed by the Island’s unique natural environments, histories, and inhabitants. We will continue to integrate these findings as we move forward with this performance project.”
Hilary Brown-Istrefi, HB² PROJECTS

I am very grateful to Savona and Nadia for providing this opportunity for us as artists. Savona has spared no expense to provide interdisciplinary resources for us to use, including a 3D printer, natural dyes and dying workshops, A sound room for sound art, a photo studio and even musical instruments. Many of these have pushed me to consider work beyond my painting, sculpture and installation background. It is a pleasure to be an Artist in Resident here, and am excited to present a fireplace installation project that I’d been working on, next year.”
Dario Mohr, Visual Artist

My time on Governors Island has been very productive and peaceful. During this pandemic to have a safe haven to produce work, share work with other creatives, and enter a new environment has benefited my practice immensely. The staff, and in particular, the security staff have been impeccable.”
Kraig Blue, Visual Artist

Highlights from WHAF’s 2020 season on Governors Island

Planting a garden in front of WHAF’s Nolan Park house

Building raised plant beds for the garden

Natural dye workshop in WHAF’s Nolan Park house

Professional development day with Earth Matter