Everything is connected.

The Nomadic Artist

Traveling the World with Artist Residencies

A solo show in one month

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ICBAA Residency

ICB Artist Association, Sausalito, CA (1 month)

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I continue to live at my apartment in Oakland and make daily trips to my new studio in Sausalito. I make my way to a giant industrial center building that is fully devoted to the arts. There are 30+ artist studios inside this massive warehouse which is right along the marina. Seagulls and the wiping sounds of sailboat cables stir in the breezy coastline. It is a haven settled right above the reflective water surrounded by rolling green mountains. This feels like a safe abode, out of the city and mellow. This residency provides a free studio and solo exhibition at the ICB Artist Association’s Gallery 111.

I drive canvases, art boxes, buckets of paints, and collage material into the studio. It is on the ground floor of the warehouse, so artists pass by on their way to their studios. I meet most of the artists there, getting tours of their studios and tea breaks together. The building is vibrant and art-filled and there is an undertone of busy commitment to one’s craft. We are all showing up to the studio each day to excel at our career. I feel supported and connected to a community of full-time artists that prioritize their practice. It is also helpful to see how they spend their days. Eventually, I hope to have a studio of my own so it is intriguing to see the routine around that commitment.

My first days at the residency include an artist talk, cocktail party, and introductions to the community. Artists in the building are invited to visit me at the studio any time. The goal is to uplift and inspire the creative community at ICBAA by having guest artists work and exhibit in their gallery. I felt instantly welcome and knew that I had to get busy if I needed to fill a gallery by the end of the month. With a packed lunch and dinner as well as several cans of Red Bull, I got to work.

Dance above the surface of the world. Let your thoughts lift you into creativity that is not hampered by opinion.
— Red Haircrow
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Since my residency at Kala had just come to a close, it was evident that the subject matter and processes were still needing to be expressed. Many of the new works created at ICBAA residency were extensions, elaborating themes and topics explored at Kala. My interests involved merging, entangling, and overlapping various networked systems. I wanted brackets of a DNA strand to form the wifi symbol and strands of a spider’s web to turn into electrical cables. I wanted to visualize how biology, technology, and sociology co-existed.

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I laid out dozens of images of various plants, animals, technologies, and patterns and began illustrating them side-by-side. In order to build relationships between the contrasting subject matter, I blended and interlaced forms to make them more connected. This process taught me more about transitions between images, forming metamorphosis-like changes between material and content. The works are vibrant, playful, experimental, and free-form. Guests and artists pass through my studio as I work and together we brainstorm what to add or take away. It is nice to have external feedback as works take form, noticing what people gravitate to and understand.

The ICBAA residency seemed to blow by. I made a group of new friends, modeled for a local fashion designer, gave an artist talk, took lunch breaks by the sea, got an eye-opening tarot card reading, ate Indian/Italian fusion food from local vender, exhibited a solo show entitled “Intertwined,” and achieved what I had set out to do. My plan was to let art flow, and make work intuitively. I wanted to see how other artists worked as well, which was apparent during studio visits. This residency introduced me to a remarkable creative community that continues to inspire from afar.


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Thank you to the ICBAA community for your support.

ICBAARichelle Gribble