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Call to Artists: Collage the Planet: Environmentalism in Art Artist Residency

A six-day, in-person collage artist residency in New Orleans

Virtual Sessions: Monday, 18 March 2024, 4-6PM EDT and Saturday, 13 April 2024, 1-3PM EDT

In Person: 1PM on Tuesday, 16 April to Noon on Sunday, 21 April 2024

Final Deadline to Apply: Sunday, 10 March 2024

In recent years, activists have taken to staging protests in museums as a way to draw attention to the pressing issues of climate change and in doing so suggest the art world was somehow at odds with the goals of humanity having a healthy, ethical relationship to the natural world. The premise of the "Collage the Planet: Environmentalism in Art Artist Residency" is that science has the capacity to tell us how to care for the planet, but those solutions are meaningless if humanity doesn't care enough to evolve and change. Art is a unique technology that can distill complexity into simple human gestures that, when experienced, facilitate a deeper understanding of our world. In short, art can be a tool for caring. 

What role can artists play in sorting through the complex social, political, and economic dynamics that shape our discourse around the environment and leave us feeling confused and powerless? How do we sort through such complexity and develop an understanding for ourselves of what an ethical and healthy relationship with the natural world could be? What is the relationship between our individual choices and the systemic change needed to bring humanity's relationship with the natural world into harmony? How do we move beyond rhetoric, cliche, and performative actions and towards meaningful change? In this six-day, in-person residency, collage artists will create work that explores environmentalism in art and make artwork that contributes to a broader dialogue on sustainability and ecological consciousness. Residents will reflect on the balance between human activity and the environment and explore strategies to draw attention to issues such as climate change, biodiversity loss, and the impact of industrialization on our planet. 

This residency is particularly important to New Orleans, a city deeply connected to its natural surroundings and witness to ecological challenges and natural disasters that have left indelible marks on its landscape and community. 

Jill Stoll's Consumer Cloth Project asks, "How can we reconcile our addiction to consumerism and be safekeepers of our planet at the same time?" Stoll collects cardboard waste from "bodegas and restaurant dumpsters", trolls "the neighborhood on garbage days", and processes this material into strips which she weaves into artworks on an improvised loom of push pins, binder clips, and glue. During the residency, Stoll will speak about her project and her practice. Moira Crone, artist and award-winning author, will speak about her relationship to New Orleans and the environmental aspects she works with in her art and writing. Crone is “inspired by the complexities of vision and sound in New Orleans” and in her work “the interpenetration of humans and their environment is a constant theme.” Christopher Kurts will speak about his work and its relationship to environmentalism. Kurts writes “I’m thinking about what we build and what we leave behind, not just for our communities, but for the land and the animals that allow our communities to exist. I believe that the cyclical nature of our relationship with Earth’s resources requires us to take care of that which takes care of us.” Madera E. Rogers-Henry will speak about her project, The Recycle Challenge Parade & Festival, during which popular craft-making using reclaimed materials promotes "sustainable practices and environmental awareness." She writes, "The festival includes parades, exhibitions, and engaging activities designed to showcase the efforts of local communities and businesses in leading the way towards a more sustainable future." During the residency, Rogers-Henry will speak about how the project uses social practice and crafting as a way of building community around environmental issues.

The goal of this residency is to support collage artists as they adapt their artist practice to speak to the complexities of environmental issues and contribute to a broader dialogue on sustainability and ecological consciousness. During the residency, artists will consider how elements of their practice (research & play, process, making, finishing, diffusion, and impact & engagement) can be adapted. 

Artists will be invited to submit artwork to the exhibition "Collage the Planet: Environmentalism in Art", 19 April to 19 May 2024 at Kolaj Institute Gallery in New Orleans and to participate in The Recycle Challenge Parade and Festival taking place in the St. Claude neighborhood. 

The exhibition and artist residency, "Collage the Planet: Environmentalism in Art" is part of Kolaj Institute's project, Politics in Collage, a series of residencies, publications, discussions, and exhibitions examining complex socio-political issues that contemporary society is contending with, in order to spark meaningful dialogue and inspire deeper engagement.


The Collage the Planet: Environmentalism in Art Residency is in-person and 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 have a practice of (or want to develop a practice of) making artwork that speaks to environmental issues in their communities.


The cost of the residency is $750USD. Kolaj Institute has a limited number of grants available to offset the cost of the workshop for those in need. These grants are possible through the generous support of our donors. Travel to and from New Orleans, accommodations in New Orleans, and all meals are the responsibility of the artist. 


Collage the Planet: Environmentalism in Art Residency will have two Virtual Sessions (Monday, 18 March, 4-6PM EDT & Saturday, 13 April, 1-3PM EDT).

In-person activities take place at Kolaj Institute, 2374 Saint Claude Avenue, Suite 230, starting at 1PM, Tuesday, 16 April to Noon, Sunday, 21 April. 

Participating artists will have 24-hour access to the space from 1PM Tuesday, 16 April to Noon, Sunday, 21 April. 

Kolaj Institute stocks general collage-making materials such as cutting mats, scissors, a variety of glues, substrates, and books and magazines. If an artist wishes to use specific materials they may be shipped in advance to the Kolaj Institute Studio & Gallery. 


We use Submittable to accept and review our submissions.