LEÑA artist residency is an artist-run, multi-disciplinary, gathering place for practicing artists and creatives in search of focused self-directed work weeks of exploration, research, or process. It exists to offer support in creative work without added barrier - getting work funded and getting work heard/programmed/seen requires a different kind of effort and skill and can pull the artist away from the work itself. Sometimes, it is nice to be able to simply access deep creation and thinking without justification, display, or pressure.
Pico Iyer on retreating: “as soon as I arrived in that place I realized that none of that [busy life] really matters and that by being here I would have so much more to offer my family and my friends. When I am at home .. a part of me is braced for the telephone to ring or the chime of you've got mail in the next room so I interrupt myself even if it doesn't interrupt me. If ever I am tempted to look at the stars I think, oh no there are a thousand things I have to do around the house or around the town. If I involved in a deep conversation I suddenly think oh the game is on tv I should do that. And so, one way or another I always cut into my own clarity and concentration when I am at home, it reminded me why sometimes people like me have to take conscious measures to have to step into the stillness and silence.”
LEÑA’s version of stillness and silence is located on British Columbia’s beautiful Galiano Island, the closest of the Gulf Islands to Vancouver. LEÑA is a short distance from Vancouver and the Vancouver International Airport (YVR) as it can be reached by an hour-long ferry from the Tsawwassen ferry terminal with or without a car or via a thirty-minute float plane flight from YVR’s south terminal.
|| SPACES ||
The main house has three single- or double-occupancy bedrooms with two bathrooms, a large shared kitchen and dining area on the main floor, and a lounging work space, visual artist corner, and reading nook on the lower floor. The barn-style studio building is approximately 400sq ft in size and includes a sprung maple dance floor, a seating loft, in-wall work desks, a quality sound system, programmable LED lighting, and an inviting front deck. The final building on site is a small 60 sq ft work shed nestled in the forest for solo, isolated work needs.
|| SURROUNDINGS ||
The eight-acre property backs onto Galiano’s Bluffs Park and makes hikes through forest to stunning Gulf Island views effortless. In addition, the island offers countless opportunities for hikes up to high points or down beaches and shore access and has restaurants and shops to enjoy.
|| PARTICIPATION ||
At present, artists-in-residency offerings are by invitation only. Open artist calls and applications will begin in 2020. While on site, work is self-directed and meals are self-managed (but often shared). The distraction-free and nature-inspired time is yours.
|| HOST ||
LEÑA Artist Research and Residency Centre is run by Dayna Szyndrowski, a dancer and photographer living in the house full-time, facilitating the week for artists-in-residency, asking how hard work days are going, and often found making dinner for guests. The site is shared with Gradient Retreat Center, a place for developers, makers, and code writers to take a week away from their regular lives to focus on creative work. Gradient is facilitated by Avi Bryant, a software developer who has led engineering teams at Stripe, Twitter, and Etsy.