Hi there, I was invited to undertake a 6 week residency at www.yaddo.org earlier this year. From my understanding it is one of the most prestigious residencies in the US. I was actually awarded a residency in 2020 but it was postponed due to the pandemic and so they reached out to me earlier in the year to move it to this spring. I also must commend them for the further support they offered me, making a contribution to my flight costs from Ireland.
The residency was only half capacity due to the covid restrictions so there was actually only 12 AIRs at the time I undertook the residency programme and that depleted to a final 6 by the end of the residency term. This is unusually for Yaddo as historically there are rolling residencies so the place is usually hopping with people.
The studio I was offered was fantastic. As was the accommodation. There are two fabulous chefs who provide 3 meals a day ( open kitchen, packed lunch and 3 course meal dinner). I actually was so jaded from my recent bout of covid myself that the fact that someone cooked for me as just the respite that I needed. (I have 3 kids at home so a break to daydream over ideas and contemplate new work was just a complete gift).
Over all I would say that Yaddo is a wonderful residency probably for writers and music artists but it appears that the set up for visual artists is not up to par with contemporary residency programmes. It would be better if there was more cross over with perhaps a more curated programme where by artists/curators/visual art media artist and writers are programmed together. That is not to say it is not a joy to listen to Poets, and musicians but a greater more tailored programme would be much better which maybe blocks of Visual producers at the same time. I was very fortunate to get on very well with my fellow artists who were predominantly from the literary arts ( and even a pending collaboration brewed as a result) but I was rather lonely and felt a little like a spare wheel from time to time.
The residency though I would recommend to anyone who just wants time to step out of the deadline driven production run of arts practice and just to get a bit of time to recuperate.
Some other residencies I have undertaken which I may post about also are:
Banff Centre (Canada)
Kunsthalle Szombathely (Hungary)
Kunsthalle Kaunas (Lithuania)
Vermont Studio Center ( Fellow)
Headlands Center for the Arts
Kennedy Space Center AIR programme ( now defunct circa 2007)
Tyrone Guthrie Centre (IRL)
Irish Museum of Modern Art (IRL)
Musee La Garoxxtia (ESP)
Firestation studios (IRL)