Artist in Residence Program Archives | Hawaii's First Coworking Space
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Call for Artist-in-Residence 2018 Applications

 

Apply now for our 2018 BoxJelly+Fishcake Artist-in-Residence (AiR) Program, an opportunity to create new work for a solo exhibition in Honolulu, Hawaii in the heart of Kaka’ako. 

We’re looking for artists who work in contemporary art practices and forms with big ideas and the ambition to execute them.

Spring Term starts February 1 – April 30, 2018.

Summer Term starts May 1 – Aug 30, 2018.

Fall Term starts September 1 – November 30, 2018.

Each 3-month residency includes:

  • A “clean” studio space suitable for artists working in digital arts, video, photography, illustration, fiber arts and textile design. We cannot accommodate painting, woodworking or ceramics.
  • A solo exhibition at The BoxJelly, the premier co-working space for urban creatives in Hawaii! We will provide press, marketing and hosting costs of the opening reception. All sales from the exhibition go directly to the artist.
  • BoxJelly Dedicated Studio membership (a $1500 value).
  • An opportunity to earn a spot on Fishcake’s roster of local and international artists and designers.  Fishcake sells artists’ work in two retail locations, and through their interior design studio, Fishcake Works.

The residency does not include exhibition costs, artist stipend, transportation or housing. We cannot offer a visa for international applicants. For visiting artists, we may be able to offer temporary lodging, pending availability.

The next application deadline for the AiR Program is December 15, 2017. 

Step 1: Apply Here

Step 2: Email materials below to laurie (at) theboxjelly.com

Submissions must include:

  • Project proposal: 1-2 pages in length, outlining a plan to create a body of work to enhance BoxJelly’s space. Include a detailed list of techniques and materials, outlining project logistics, supply and labor needs, and budget
  • Artist’s CV
  • Digital zip file containing 5-10 samples of your most recent work with an inventory sheet
  • Artist Statement
  • Other Supportive Material (optional)

 

 

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Life Inspired Art

I began to sincerely make work about vulnerable elements of my own life after a studio visit with a close friend of mine, Zina.  At that time, Zina had been making work about her father and his friends’ lives in Iraq when they were in their youth. Utilizing old photographs and narratives from her father, the paintings were vibrant, and intriguing. Most of all, they radiated an endearment that was palpable. Standing in Zina’s studio that evening, we began to naturally talk about our lives and the inherent inspiration we garner from our experiences as women who’ve had to flee our home countries for relative safety in the USA. In the middle of this conversation, as she is wont to do, Zina turned to me and gave me the very heartfelt criticism that I should begin to make work that was primarily about significant moments in my life.

For a very long time, I made work that was inspired a bit by my experiences but was mainly about the lives of people and refugees I interviewed. Although these works were in line with topics I was interested in: memory, trauma, identity, and sensory-to-language translation; they did not speak directly about my own experiences. Instead, offering others a space to speak about their own experiences, acted as a sort of buffer to having to address my own history or translate my experiences. In Zina’s studio that evening in Oakland, her statement acted as a mirror to my thoughts. I had been thinking about the exact same thing, but hesitating from fear of vulnerability. Sometimes, all you need to make a decision, is a loved one holding a mirror up to you. In my case, the conversation with Zina was exactly the push I needed.

Today, I am working on series of works about momentous experiences that shaped my life.  For my residency at Box Jelly and Fishcake, the main concept is ‘Motherhood’. The root of this is in the early loss of my mother to an act of violence.  The sprout of this is my recent pregnancy. In the first month of my residency at Box Jelly and Fishcake, I had planned already to make work about my mother: my memories of her, the pain of losing her to violence, and letting go of the power it’s held over me. Then I learned I was pregnant, and suddenly it became more imperative to do this work now.

The Artist’s Mother

Looking back, what made Zina’s paintings of her father and his childhood friends endearing wasn’t just the colors, or line-work of the paintings. It was also the emotional connection of Zina to the subjects, their memories, and a deep longing for a home loved and lost to time and circumstance. The pieces I am making about my mother will neither recreate her, nor come close to fully defining who she was. By exploring the fragments of her that I still have with me: memories of her singing to me, lifting me to her hips, moving around my grandmother’s yard. Memories of running up to her, burying myself in her skirts, hugging her legs. As well as elusive memories of the moments surrounding her death. I hope to build an exhibit that, as a whole, will give a sense of what she meant to me and the implications of a life lived under the shadow of loss.

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Sandalwood and Memory of Place

My time here at Box Jelly and Fishcake has continued to be inspiring. During a meeting last month with collaborators to discuss an upcoming performance, I ran the concept by Maura Fujihira. She immediately had two simple questions that completely changed the direction of the work. The piece I was working on, Cleanse, is a performance of an act of mourning that involved me cleaning and washing a space in Ward Warehouse, as a final act of nurture and gratitude before it would be torn down. Maura asked: “What soap will you be using?” and “What will you be wearing?” In that moment, I had assumed that what I would be wearing would be something white but hadn’t thought beyond that.  I also wasn’t confident in my decision for a dress.  I discussed my options with Maura and was much more confident in my choice at the end.

In terms of the soap, I had originally thought that I would use an African Black Soap I had procured from a natural product shop in Nigeria the last time I was there.  My reasoning for this was that the piece, Cleanse was a way for me to mourn my mother who passed away in Nigeria when I was a child. While describing the decision to Maura, I recognized that I felt no particular connection to the soap itself aside from the fact that it was from a shop in Nigeria. I didn’t immediately decide to change the soap, but it stayed in the back of mind. It was a very important part of the performance and as such, it was important that it also had a strong connection to the piece itself. That night, the conversation with Maura came to mind again. She is quite intuitive and sensitive in an ethereal way. Something about her choice of the question lingered. I fell asleep that night thinking that I needed better intention in the decision of the soap used for Cleanse.

The next day, my videographers and I went on a site visit of the space to plan the performance.  After our meeting, I mindfully strolled about all of Ward Warehouse to prepare myself for the performance. Lost in thought towards the very end of my walk, I came upon Island Soap & Candle Works. Walking in, I met the owners and their lovely young adult children, Kimo and Tiare. Both had grown up knowing the family business in Ward Warehouse. They told me of the countless hours they spent as children in the space watching their parents work. Tiare had no memories of the family business not being located in Ward Warehouse. Both expressed feeling sad about the closing of the space but also looked forward to the next phase of the business they had watched their parents build and were themselves also helping develop. The family not only sold soaps and candles in the space; they also created their products in the back of the Ward Warehouse space. Kimo and Tiare showed me the new series of soaps they were working on – beautiful decadent pieces carefully crafted from a complex combination of soaps that rivaled pastries in any French patisserie. It was apparent that they loved what they did and unmistakable that they grew up working in the field. I decided at that moment to describe my project to them and ask for a recommendation on a soap.

Sandalwood – ‘iliahi in Hawaiian – has a strong influence on the history of Hawaii. Six high-quality species of the tree once grew so abundantly on the islands that the Chinese referred to the Hawaiian Islands as the Sandalwood Mountains. Through the foreign trade of Sandalwood – Hawaii’s first major export – King Kamehameha I was able to procure weapons in which to aid in his conquering and unifying of the islands. That trade lasted between 1790 and 1825. On August 1st, 2017, I bought two barsof Cedar Sage Sandalwood soap from Island Soap & Candle Works at the suggestion of local soap makers, Kimo and Tiare. Both bars were made in Ward Warehouse. They were made of natural ingredients, had a neutral aesthetic, and carried a beautiful faint fragrance of sandalwood.  I used one of them in my performance of Cleanse on August 2nd, 2017 to scrub the walls and floors of Ward Warehouse. I intend to use the second bar in a second performance at BoxJelly + Fishcake during my exhibit. As this second piece develops, I will share more.

Nanci Amaka

 

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Settling Into The Space

My time here at BoxJelly and Fishcake has so far, been very productive in many unexpected ways.  As a conceptual artist working with the challenging concepts of trauma, memory, and identity, I was unsure of what would come from my time here at a co-working space and interior design organization.  I must say that I have been thoroughly impressed with: the counsel I have received, the space itself, and the freedom to explore and build on my concepts.

My first interaction with BoxJelly and Fishcake was during their introduction of the Artist In Residence (AIR) program at the Artist In Conversation (AIC) Q&A talk. After the Q&A, I was able to tour the space, and get my bearings of what it could allow in terms of art production. I also met several of the creatives already working there. In my initial proposal, I had intended to develop ‘Sensoria’ – a series I have been working on that centers around the concept of paradoxically translating sensory information. During my interview with Laurie Sumiye, and Keiko Hatano, they encouraged me to continue working on my performances as that was what I really wanted to work on.  Although it wasn’t immediately clear how I could translate performance work into their space, nor exhibit it after my residency, I was encouraged to do the work anyway as it was interesting and relevant.  I was, and am still, very grateful for their trust in my work and concepts.

I began my residency in July and have been very happy with it.  The AIR space is located in the inner sections of Fishcake and provides ample space to work; including a gorgeous large work table, ample storage and quite a bit of privacy. It resembles a studio and I immediately felt at ease creating a dry ‘mess’. The residency also comes with 24-hour access which comes in handy when I have to come in at odd hours to work. I will say though, that my favorite part of the space is the ability to meet with several collaborators and teams to discuss projects I am working on. In those cases, it is very easy to buy them coffee at Morning Glass and then settle in at a communal table and meet in a professional setting away from the mess of my studio table.

I am curious and excited about what the rest of my time here at Box Jelly + Fishcake will yield. The counsel I have received as well as the artistic freedom to develop my work has been generous and I am very grateful for it.  I have been able to work as I usually do – intuitively and open to nuance, while maintaining a discipline of concept. I cannot say that I am surprised to find that I have been able to work this way here; as I had no clear expectations.  But I will say that I am thoroughly enjoying the experience.

Nanci Amaka

 

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Artists in Residence, in Conversation: A Recap

 

 

 

 

Last Wednesday, in collaboration with Fishcake, the BoxJelly kicked off a fun evening of raffle prizes and info-packed conversation with its inaugural artist in residence, Amelia Samara and Laurie Sumiye, our second artist in residence and newly appointed coordinator of the program. Through this presentation- style conversation, audience members learned more about this unique opportunity and what it takes to become our next artist in residence.

 

The two artists started by introducing themselves: Amelia grew up in many places, a factor which she attributes to shaping her work and interests. She remarked that while in school, there was perhaps a disproportionate amount of emphasis on the conceptual aspect of art while very little to no attention on the business side.  After graduating with BFA in Fiber Arts from University of Hawai’i, she tried to grapple with how to actually make a living as an artist coming from a background where “making beautiful art for the sake of just making beautiful art is not encouraged.”

 

Born and raised in Mililani, Laurie Sumiye took an 18 year hiatus from the islands until returning to the Big Island where she began a documentary focused on an endangered native Hawai’ian bird called the Palila. During her time away from Oahu, she pursued an undergraduate degree in Art and Communication, worked in web design and advertising, and then earned a filmmaking degree at Hunter College.

 


 

 

 

 

Both artists agreed that this residency provides the unique opportunity to understand the professional side of your career as an artist. With a very supportive network of people from both the BoxJelly and Fishcake, you will have people to talk to and bounce ideas off of. The program provides a chance to explore and develop your practice, but also works within a mindset that reassures you that it is okay to create something to sell. Amelia commented that it was a pretty intuitive process, which she entered without knowing exactly what she wanted to do, although artists are required to submit a proposal as part of the application process. While Laurie noted that the program helped keep her on track, by setting deadlines (now 3 months, instead of 6) it also helped her engage with an audience, and connect what she is interested in with a local audience. She now feels that she is at a point where where her art making is a sustainable career, and left the audience with a statement: “It’s possible to live in Hawai’i, to make a living doing what you love *and living in Hawai’i*. You don’t have to go somewhere else, and there’s support for what you do [here], that was my biggest revelation.”

 

Applications are due June 15 at midnight. More information about the program can be found here.

 

The event was live streamed on Facebook, watch now:  link: https://www.facebook.com/fishcake.hawaii/videos/10155274611678632/

 

Below is an outline that highlights the types of questions asked in the conversation and by the audience along with it’s corresponding times in the live stream recording:

 

14:40 — What was the process like of having an exhibition at the BoxJelly and the selling work at Fishcake?

 

18:30 — The most surprising thing?

 

22:40 — What’d you do after the residency and how did it help you move forward in your practice?

 

24:50 — Did you find that in being in this space, in this community, affected your art at all?

 

28:24 — Tension between commercial aspect of selling vs. conceptual, conversation-sparking art. Is there one?

 

29:39 —How Laurie chose birds as her subject.

 

36:39 —What would be useful to know for applying if you had not done this before? Whats required of the artists?

 

43:00 — Lessons learned as program alumnae. If you could do things differently knowing what you do now, what would you do differently?

 

48:09—Pricing work?

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Artist in Residence Program

CALL FOR BOXJELLY+FISHCAKE ARTIST IN RESIDENCE

We are now accepting proposals for BoxJelly+Fishcake Artist in Residence (AiR), a 3-month opportunity to create new work for a solo exhibition in Honolulu, Hawaii in the heart of Kaka’ako, an urban neighborhood with proximity to the beach, shops, restaurants, bars and local events.

We’re looking for bright, enterprising creatives who work in contemporary art practices and forms with big ideas and the ambition to execute them. 

The Summer Residency is 3 months July 1st to September 30th.

The residency includes:

  • A workspace (a clean studio space suitable for artists and designers working in digital arts, video, photography, illustration, fiber arts and textile design).
  • A solo exhibition at The BoxJelly, the premier co-working space for urban creatives in Hawaii! We will provide press, marketing and hosting costs of the opening reception. All sales from the exhibition go directly to the artist.
  • BoxJelly Dedicated Studio membership (a $1500 value).
  • Creative mentoring with BoxJelly Arts Coordinator Laurie Sumiye.
  • A one-on-one portfolio review with Fishcake Art Curator Keiko Hatano.
  • Consultation with Fishcake Co-Founder and Chief Creative Maura Fujihira and Fishcake Showroom Manager Cassie Louie on selling artwork and design products.
  • An opportunity to earn a spot on Fishcake’s roster of local and international artists and designers.  Fishcake sells artists’ work in two retail locations, as well as direct to homeowners and businesses through their interior design studio, Fishcake Works.

The residency does not include exhibition costs, artist stipend, transportation or housing. We cannot offer a visa for international applicants.

Submissions must include:

  • The application form
  • Project proposal: 1-2 pages in length, outlining a plan to create a body of work to enhance BoxJelly’s space. Include a detailed list of techniques and materials, outlining project logistics, supply and labor needs, and budget
  • Artist’s CV
  • Digital zip file containing 5-10 samples of your most recent work with an inventory sheet
  • Artist Statement
  • Other Supportive Material (optional)

Please email your application and materials to laurie@theboxjelly.com

FINAL DEADLINE: MIDNIGHT HST, JUNE 15th 2017

DEADLINE EXTENED: MIDNIGHT HST, JUNE 16th 2017.

 

To arrange a space visit and for all questions, please contact:

Laurie Sumiye
Arts Coordinator, BoxJelly
laurie@theboxjelly.com

 

FAQs

How do I apply for the Artist in Residence program?

Jump over here and submit an application by June 15th!

Can we apply to the next seasons AiR Program? 

Yes, we will be accepting Fall ’17 and Spring ’18 applications in a couple of months.

Who will be deciding on the submissions?

A panel of creative folks the artist will be working with from Fishcake and BoxJelly.

Is there a fee to apply?

No!

Is there an artist’s stipend?

Nope, sorry, just a space.

How big is the space?

About ~150 sq ft or so.

What do you mean by “clean studio space”?

It does not refer how neat you are! The larger space is shared with designers and folks who work on computers. This means no painting, wet media, or materials that give off toxic fumes.

What are my transportation/parking options for getting to and from the event?

Parking is FREE at the Ward Warehouse parking structure located one block from the BoxJelly on the corner of Ward Ave & Auahi St (across from StarBucks). There is also a drop off loading zone right in front of the BoxJelly.

How can I contact the organizer with any questions?

Give us a call M-F 8am – 8pm (808)769-6921 or email us info@theboxjelly.com

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