Voices Of The Wilderness, an artist-in-residence program on the Tongass National Forest, Chugach National Forests and Western Arctic Parklands, is still accepting emailed applications for residencies in Tracy Arm-Ford’s Terror Wilderness, Petersburg Ranger District Wilderness, Nellie Juan-College Fiord, Sitka Ranger District Wilderness and Western Arctic National Parklands. Emailed applications must be received no later than 11:59 p.m. Alaska time March 1.
The Voices of the Wilderness artist residency is modeled after traditional residencies in the national parks — with a twist. Instead of staying at a remote wilderness cabin, participating artists are paired with a wilderness ranger and actively engaged in stewardship projects, such as research, monitoring and education. The idea is to give artists a sense of the stewardship behind America’s public lands through artistic exploration. The hoped-for result is artwork that communicates something of the meaning of these lands.
During their residency, each artist will assist with some basic ranger duties, which may include boarding a tour boat to provide education, participating in research projects, such as seal counts or climate change studies, walking a beach to remove litter, or other generally light duties. However, an emphasis for the artist will be experiencing the wilderness and exploring how to communicate its inspirational qualities through their artwork.
Residencies are open to artists and arts professionals in all media, including visual artists, musicians, filmmakers and writers. The residency period runs June through September; specific dates vary according to the residency.
A panel of professional artists and Forest Service or Park Service employees will select artists based on artistic merit, their statement of purpose, and appropriateness to a wilderness residency. Selections will be made by mid May.
Each artist will be provided the same safety training as other volunteers (includes aviation and boat safety, kayak safety, use of radios and satellite phones, and review of Job Hazard Analyses). The Forest Service and National Park Service will provide transportation to and from the field, camping and kayaking gear, and in most cases, food as well.
Following their residency, each participant is expected to donate one piece of artwork to the hosting federal agency for use in publicizing the values of the public lands. Donated artwork should be representative of our public lands and communicate its inspirational or other values. Artwork should be delivered to the appropriate Ranger District within six months of the residency.
Artists are also expected to provide one public presentation within six months of completing their residency, such as a slide lecture, demonstration, or workshop that publicizes the program and connects the community to its public lands. Other examples include a performance, explorative hike, or participation in the public lecture, such as the Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center Fireside winter programs.
For more information, visit www.voicesofthewilderness.blogspot.com