Kolaj Institute partners with MERZ Workshop in Sanquhar, Scotland to offer week-long residencies for collage artists in April and September. Residencies are organized around a theme which results in a project that brings focus to the group’s engagement with one another. Submissions are reviewed on a rolling basis until space is filled. Artists are encouraged to apply well before deadlines.

ABOUT COLLAGE ARTIST RESIDENCIES

Collage Artist Residency: Scotland is a week-long artist residency designed for artists working in collage who seek to make art in community with other artists. The residency will unfold over the course of a week. Each day the group will meet in the morning for a presentation or workshop. Faculty will make presentations about place in art and strategies for incorporating place into one’s practice. Designed for collage artists, professional development sessions focus on artist practice: topics include Collage Theory; Sourcing Materials, Copyright, Appropriation; Developing Materials; Collaboration; and Collage in Presentation. Additional presentations speak to themes and projects specific to that particular residency.

In the afternoons, artists may choose to make art or take up an afternoon activity such as a walk to the River Nith and castle or a visit to the Tolbooth Museum or Saint Bride’s church or an afternoon trip via rail to Dumfries or Glasgow. Artists will have the opportunity to work one-on-one with faculty. In the evenings, we will convene at the Nithsdale Pub to informally share the experience of our days.

Our hope is that artists will return to their home communities with fresh eyes and be prepared to see their art practice and home communities in a unique way.

WHO IS THIS FOR?

Collage Artist Residency: Scotland is an in-person residency at MERZ Gallery in Sanquhar, Scotland centered on collage artists who want to develop their artist practice. Residencies are intended for self-motivated artists, regardless of the stage in their career, who want to develop their practice by exploring a topic or working method and collaborating with others to produce a final product and who want to develop a practice of working with place, historic sites or history associations, folklore or other themes to create and present art that embeds itself in non-traditional spaces and speaks to a general community about contemporary issues.

Residencies are open to any artist over the age of 21 from anywhere in the world. We look for artists who have a developed sense of practice (even if it is an emerging one) and those who have a strong connection to a community. People of color, indigenous people, and members of queer communities are encouraged to apply.

Upcoming Residencies 

April 2023
Passing Place

These sessions are now closed.

When artists approach a place as an archive, they draw out a deeper, more complex understanding of that place that enriches our understanding of our communities, helps us be better citizens, and empowers us to take better care of our neighbors. Using the rural community of Sanquhar, Scotland as a laboratory, artists will spend a week making artwork; learning about the place, its people, and its history; and discussing how art can capture, share, reflect, comment, and otherwise engage with a sense of place. We will hear from guest artists and local historians about Sanquhar. The goal of the residency is to develop an individual methodology for responding to place in one’s art practice and to make a work of art about Sanquhar that speaks to and about the people and land.

During the residency, residents will make a series of collages which will be shown in exhibition at MERZ for World Collage Day 2023 and at Kolaj Fest New Orleans 2023. Artists will also participate in a collaborative project during the Residency. After the residency, artists will be invited to submit 3-5 collages and a statement for inclusion in a book of collage about Sanquhar that will be published by Kolaj Institute in 2024.

September 2023
Folklore & Collage

Tuesday, 5 September to Monday, 11 September 2023
Wednesday, 13 September to Tuesday, 19 September 2023
Thursday, 21 September to Wednesday, 27 September 2023

Folklore is the imagination of the past as it is understood in the present. More importantly, folklore is how a community expresses itself to one another. In order for folklore to be transmitted over time, it must be nurtured. During a time when folklore is devalued by economic systems and dismissed by political power, artists play an important role in calling attention to and celebrating these important elements that shape community identity and reinforce communal ties. In times of crisis and collective trauma, these stories can be key to a community’s sense of resilience and ultimate survival. By engaging with these stories, artists can play a role in activating folklore for a community and facilitating their transmission. During the Folklore & Collage Residencies, artists identify stories from communities and make art which activates these stories. Prior to their arrival, artists will meet once virtually to meet one another and to discuss how to select the folklore on which they will focus during the residency. Read more about Kolaj Institute’s Folklore & Collage Project.

During the residency, residents will make artwork (a collage or series of collages) which will be shown in exhibition at MERZ Gallery in Sanquhar, Scotland in September 2023 as part of the Celebration of Folklore. After the residency, artists will be invited to submit 3-5 collages and a statement for inclusion in a book about folklore that will be published by Kolaj Institute in 2024.

Residency Costs & Logistics

RESIDENCY LOGISTICS

Artists are responsible for their travel to and from Sanquhar.

Artists may arrive anytime after 1PM the day before the start of the residency and must depart by Noon on the last day. Artists are expected to attend all scheduled sessions and be active participants in the community. We may use online tools such as Zoom, WhatsApp, and Google Docs to communicate and share information prior to and after the Residency. Technical support is available as needed.

Essential collage making supplies are available. This includes cutting mats and tools, glues, materials, and substrates. Small and large format printers are available, as is a scanner.

On-site and Off-site housing is available.

COSTS

The cost of the residency for artists staying on-site is $975USD. On-site housing is designed for individual artists. Each artist has their own bedroom, but kitchen and bathroom facilities may be shared.

The cost of the residency for artists staying off-site is $750USD. Upon acceptance, artists will be given a list of housing options with which they can make their own arrangements. Housing costs in the village range from £40-155 per night, with a number of options in the £40-60 range. Off-site housing is designed for those artists with unique needs or those who may be traveling with a companion.

The residency fee includes one meal per day, 24-hour access to workspace, and general collage making tools and supplies. Artists are responsible for their own travel to and from Sanquhar, additional artist materials, and additional meals.

No artist will be turned away for lack of funds and the organizers will work with artists to build a financial aid package and support artists as they seek additional funding as needed.

How to Apply

Application Process

The submission process asks applicants for:

• Contact information
• Artist or Writer Bio (50-250 words)
• Statement of Artist or Writer Practice (50-300 words)
• 5-7 images of artwork or samples of writing
• Statement of expectations
• Asks questions about your work and needs

Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis and invitations are sent to applicants until space is filled.

QUESTIONS
If you have questions, send an email.

Artist Commitment

Upon invitation, artists will be assigned a session. Artists may arrive anytime after 1PM the day before the start of their residency and must depart by Noon on the last day.

Artists are expected to attend all scheduled sessions and be active participants in the community. We may use online tools such as Zoom, Slack, and Google Docs to communicate and share information prior to and after the Residency. Technical support is available as needed.

This Residency requires artists to be in Sanquhar, Scotland in the morning on the first day of their residency through the morning of the last day of their residency. Artists are responsible for their travel to and from Sanquhar. Accommodations and one meal per day are included as part of the Residency fee.

After the residency, artists will be invited to submit 3-5 collages and a statement for inclusion in a book of collage about Sanquhar that will be published by Kolaj Institute in 2024. By participation in the residency, artists grant Kolaj Institute, Kolaj Magazine, MERZ Gallery, and Maison Kasini permission to publish the text and images in book form and in the promotion of the project and book. Any original work made during the residency remains the property of the individual artists with all rights retained.

About Sanquhar, Scotland

Sanquhar is a rural Scottish community with a rich agricultural and manufacturing heritage. Located on the River Nith, the area has been an important crossroads going back to Neolithic times and is the site of several prehistoric British forts and a Roman outpost. A 15th-century castle ruin overlooks the town. Mary, Queen of Scots came to Sanquhar in May 1568 after her defeat at the battle of Langside. In the 17th century, Sanquhar was the site of unrest during the Covenanting period when Scottish Presbyterians fought to maintain the Church of Scotland. Agriculture, coal mining, and wool production and related industries such as knitting and carpet making flourished in the 18th century. The town hosts the world’s oldest working post office (established in 1712) and the world’s oldest curling society (formed in 1774). The Church of St. Bride’s sanctuary was dedicated to a lost, then found World War I soldier. The village of Crawick on the edge of town had once been known as a haven for witches. The Tolbooth Museum was designed by the influential 18th century Scottish architect William Adam.

Sites of Interest: Tolbooth Museum, Sanquhar Castle, Crawick Multiverse, Old Town Hall, River Nith, Saint Bride’s Church, Sanquhar Declarations Monument, and A’ the Airts (home to Sanquhar Knitting Patterns).

About MERZ Workshop

About MERZ Workshop

 Located in the former lemonade factory in Sanquhar, Scotland, MERZ is the project of artist and filmmaker David Rushton, who is developing once derelict and neglected sites into art spaces. In addition to MERZ, he has turned a former abattoir into ZIPStudio for local and visiting artists and the Museum of Model Art. Also on site are the art-houses dedicated to Kurt Schwitters and Hannah Höch for short stays (with kitchen, shower and toilet), a second small studio with accommodation (Tadpole), a pop up cinema/further exhibition or studio space (No 5), and an unheated studio and sculpture green in addition to the work-shed and yard around the MERZ gallery and Bothy. MERZ is the permanent home to the Schwitters’ Army Collection of Collage Art.

WEBSITE

Past Residencies in Scotland

Collage Artist Residency: Scotland

September 2022

Held over three weeks in September 2022, Collage Artist Residency: Scotland-September 2022 was an in-person residency at MERZ Gallery in Sanquhar, Scotland centered on collage artists who want to incorporate history and folklore into their artist practice. Residents made artwork for an exhibition and book.