I’ve been at Guldagergaard for a week now. Strange to think I’m already 1/5 of the way done with my time here. It’s been a pretty cool experience so far, and is clearly a great community.
GG is set up so that various artist come in from all different countries, staying in an old manor house, and working together in the studios, which at one time were the horse stables. We presently have 7 artists and assistants from Finland, Denmark, Canada, and the US, with a number of other folks wondering in for a day or two. The assistants spend part of the day firing kilns and what not, but work on their own projects too. We’re all working on our own work, but since we’re in a communal space, it’s a great set up for exchanging ideas and theory. The work of the other artists range from functional ware, to figurative sculpture, to wonderfully abstract glass pieces. The glass artist is here in order to figure out how to incorporate ceramic material into her pieces.
While everyone put forward proposals about what they’d be working on while they’re here, the set up is so inspiring and filled with new ideas that they may end up working in the entirely opposite direction. My proposal was to build a giant swarm of flying creatures as an installation. While I have quite a few additional ideas I think I’m going to explore, I’m going to keep going on the flying beasts as well at the same time.
Guldagergaard itself is very cool, as well. In addition to wonderful assortment of kilns and supplies, it also has extensive library of ceramic related reading material. And that’s not even mentioning its actually collection of ceramics, both in its gallery and in the house! I’ve been making sure to use a different mug every day, but I still need to go spend some time staring at the amazing work in the gallery. It’s tough to avoid feeling intimidated by the sheer amount of incredible work around.
It’s also located in the middle of a public sculpture park, with random members of the public wondering by on their bikes, and occasionally sticking their heads into the studio. My favorite part of the sculpture park is a giant earthwork spiral mound. By walking around it, you eventually reach the flattened top with a view of windmills, housing developments, and fields. When I walked to the top today, I walked right by a hare, hunkered flat, trying incredibly hard to convince me of its own invisibility.
My average day seems to be chunks of two to three hours in the studio, interspersed with exploring, eating, and talking with the other artists. I have access to a bike, and often take off in a random direction with a thermos of tea and my sketch book. The movement and the sight seeing helps me think. I’m generally in the studio until after 11 at night, which is actually a fun change for me – reminds me of my college days.
So that about sums up my observations on the place so far. It’s just a really great place to be and to be making art. I’ve uploaded some of the pictures I’ve taken so far to flickr!
Tags: ceramics, clay, denmark, guldagergaard
The experience sounds awesome! Thanks for posting about it, I have wanted to go to Guldagergaard since I found out about it two years ago but I feel I am not ready for it yet. I look forward to seeing what you develop there, the swarm of flying beasts sounds pretty cool.
I’m a ceramic artist/illustrator from Boston, and my son lives and works in Seattle, where you website says you are from. I love you work and your interesting blog here.
I sometimes work at Pottery Northwest, Seattle when I’m visiting my son to connect with the ceramic community there.
I just got an invitation, as you did, as a chosen ceramic artist to come to Guldagergaard this summer, July 2011. I’m excited too about the work I can accomplish there and the interesting environment of support with other artists.
I’m thinking ahead to prepare for what I can make in a month there and the scale so it’s easy to send it home.
one of your new fan club,
I’m so glad you’ve been enjoying my work and my blog. My time here at Guldagergaard has been absolutely great, if super busy. It’s definitely a new, intense experience of living, working, and talking about clay 24/7. The closest thing in my experience is far is the anagama firings that I do twice a year or so – just the process of sitting around with so many different clay artists over meals of good food and red wine. My guess is that you’ll love it!
However, I will say that I wasn’t lucky enough to be one of their invited guest artists, but rather I applied and was accepted as an artist in residence. It has been very nice though, since all of us, guest artists and artist in residence alike, share work space. It’s been very cool learning from everyone. Anyway, congratulations so much on the invitation! Let me know next time you’re in town, and we can meet up at pottery northwest!
I’ve been at Guldagergaard for 2 weeks and also have developed a
‘relationship” with the spiral octagonal earthwork which is in a direct sight line from my bed, through 2 tree trunks and a double smokestack somewhere in the distance behind the center of the work. I have been asking but so far have not found who the sculptor is who did the work. Do you perhaps happen to know?
I am working with the printing on clay symposium and would like to credit the correct sculptor on the work I am doing about this sight line. Any information you may have would be most helpful.
Also, by coincidence, Stephanie Osser who contacted you on this sight is here at Guldagergaard again now….