Nes Artist Residency was founded in the beginning of March 2008 in the rural and remote town of Skagaströnd and the first artists arrived in June.
Nes is a member of the Remote Network of Artist Residencies in the Nordic and Baltic Regions
As an international artist residency, Nes provides artists with a workspace and living quarters during their stay in Skagaströnd. The town was a trading and fishing town for centuries. With the fishing industry decreasing in the last decade, the former fishing plant at Fjörubraut 8 has now found a new role housing the Nes artist residency studios.
The living quarters are in apartments or row-houses, each shared by up to 4 artists.
The studios are open by appointment. If you would like to visit the residency while traveling in Iceland, or if you are considering staying at Nes and want to find out more by seeing it, please arrange to meet Melody in advance on +354 691 5554.
The main goal of the residency is to provide an opportunity for international exchange, artistic cross-pollination, and to create an open possibility for collaborations. Nes is not focused on outcomes or exhibitions, although we do encourage artists to present work if they like. The artistic process is highly regarded at Nes as a vital part of a residency, and it is appreciated when artists understand the process of liveness, or immersion into a space or place to undertake their work in a foreign and remote context. This is a residency where professional artists in all media are welcomed, and a strong encouragement of inter-disciplinary artists is extended.
A strong focus is on engagement with the community. We encourage all artists to grab the bull by the horns and jump in. Skagaströnd is more rewarding when you come with open eyes and participate in town events. We also encourage artists to present work, ideas, or process based documentation in our Open House days that are held at the end of each month.
Nes is an inter-disciplinary residency. We know the value and innovation of looking beyond one field or genre to exchange and cross-pollinate. All artforms are welcome, no matter how obscure or how many /…/…/ slashes you carry.
Open Call for applications
Applications to Nes artist residency are submitted at any time (open call) online. Summer months are particularly competitive and it is recommended you plan ahead and finalise your fees early to avoid missing out.
Your stay at the residency is loosely structured. We believe it is what you make it. The structure is left open to cater for individuality and spontaneity. Often opportunities arise that you would never have imagined, we provide an environment where you can take advantage of inspiration drawn from place and presence.
Placements at the residency are taken in monthly blocks. If you can´t stay the whole month that is ok, but your monthly block (accommodation/studio) is still allocated to you alone, and as such still payable in full.
We have a potluck dinner at the beginning of each month to introduce the artists to the members of the board. At the end of each month we host Opið Hús (open house); a presentation of artist´s work at the studios. Both of these events are open to the public.
Would you like to interact with the community?
There are many opportunities to interact with the community of Skagaströnd. The art teacher at the grade school has been working with artists from Nes. She has been bringing her classes to the studio for art talks. This is a wonderful event for both the kids and the artists and we hope you will participate.
If you have specific ideas and you work in engaged practice; live-art, relational, interactive, documentary, social performance and such, Nes can help you get in touch with people who are open to working with artists.
There is a museum called Spákonuhoff that tells the tales of þordis, the prophetess and original settler of Spákonafell mountain in Skagaströnd.
In February the town gathers to eat the traditional foods of Iceland together in a celebration called þorrablót. It is a fantastic way to meet people and be introduced to the culture in one of the biggest nights of the year.
In June Fishermans Day celebrations are held.
Christmas traditions are magical in Iceland and December glows with myths, stories, jólasveinn, and spirit.
New Years in Iceland is explosive, quite literally. Fireworks are sold in tons across the country with proceeds going to the rescue teams. Residents in Skagaströnd light up the day and night in December and January in unison with the Northern Lights..