Posted by: jeanne | November 3, 2008

living in uncertainty

i’ve “borrrowed” some photos i found of the studio cottages at the cill rialaig project. here’s what i’ve found on the internet.

 view of studio and living room, from the sleeping loft

it’s november of the year before i’m due to go off for a residency in ireland. i’m not sure of the dates yet, or how long i have. it’s still under negotiation.

 veiw of the studio

and by negotiation, i mean that i haven’t yet heard back from the administrator about when i can come. they’ve been busy with an exhibition (or they’re already annoyed with me), and aren’t geting back to me about when they have dates available. so i wait impatiently.

 view of the living room

i spent several emails asking for a range of dates, when it occurred to me that they didn’t know when i was asking about, so i clarified that. i want to go in september, but they have a 3-week period in october that i asked them to pencil in. so i’m waiting impatiently.

 the cute little bedroom. i plan to borrow bedding from my sister

i hope the wind howls thru the cracks; i love that noise, and i know it’s the beginning of the rainy season (which is a joke, there’s no beginning to a circle), so i’m thinking it’ll be stormy the entire time i’m there. that’ll mean no long walks, but on the other hand it’ll be loads of time to work. maybe i can borrow a pair of wellies and an anorak.

 somebody’s visit to somebody’s studio. comfy looking chair

my sister has already asked if she can come stay a week with me, and i’ve already told her that i’m going to want to start work immediately, and she can spend the night when she drops me off and again when she picks me up. i’ll see all my friends in dublin when i get there a week ahead of time, or when i get back off residency and prepare to go home.

 somebody’s studio. not my work

i can’t wait to get my dates settled. not because i can get my ticket yet, because the agencies only go 331 days out when selling tickets, and it’s more like 345 at this point (i’m not going to count it out).

 the wee cozy kitchen

the reason i can’t wait to get the dates settled is because i’ve got so many questions, and don’t want to be a pest and ask everything at once.

 cottages both ruined and restored on a sunny day

i’d like to get an inventory of what’s in the cottages, but i have no hope of that. i might get that on a residency in the states (but only to sign in case i’m inclined to steal anything), but they’re not that anal in ireland, thank god.

 the view, ah the view. it’s why i’m going back

but i need to know what studio equipment’s there, so i can bring what i need if it’s not. i need to know if there’s an easel, a pallette, can i thumbtack paintings to the wall. do i supply my own fuel, how far is it to the shops for milk, where’s the nearest pub, where’s there an internet connection. things like this.

 it’s a trek to the nearest village, but who cares?

and so the waiting, while part of the best part of the experience, is going to be difficult because i’ve got so much waiting to do until next fall.

 the back end of the cottages. did i mention the view?

and other uncertainties. like will i be in good enough health to go? like will i get sick like i have been doing whenever i leave my home to go somewhere? like will there still be a world as we know it to journey from (all my friends say the sky is falling because of the financial crisis).

a map of the place

it occurs to me that most all of the art i’ve seen people do in cill rialaig has to do with the area. i actually plan to do a quick painting a day of the view out of the cottage door, the view across the bay, the view out the window, or the view down the road, depending on conditions. but as for my main body of work, i’m not sure. i already know that i’m taking my dyes with me, and fabric, and will be working on the images for a quilt that i’ll complete when i get back. that’s pretty much a no-brainer. of course i’ll want to do my surroundings in fabric. but i know better, having been on loads of residencies, than to predetermine what i’m going to be working on, because the place itself will inspire me. obviously it has inspired most of the residents to paint cill rialaig, and i’m kind of hoping it will inspire me to do something completely different. we’ll see.

picture credits: photos taken from the following sites (so nobody thinks i’m stealing them):



  1. Just to say Hi. I just received a residency date of Jan 6 – 20 2009, in case you get to be there at the same time. Thanks for gathering all the pictures, it’s hard to find information, with no Cill Rialaig website. Hope it all goes well for you.
    Kind regards
    Brenda Malley


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