If you're a professional visual artist looking for an inspiring place to work next summer, this opportunity is hard to beat. Denali National Park is accepting applications for the 2011 Artist in Residence program, and those who are selected will have use of the historic Murie Cabin in the heart of the Alaskan park for 10 days.
Each residency takes place during a ten day period between June and September. The park provides the use of the historic East Fork Cabin (also known as the Murie Cabin) at Mile 43 on the Park Road. The artist is responsible for his or her own food and transportation, and no stipend is provided.
The East Fork Cabin was the base from which the naturalist Adolph Murie conducted his landmark study of wolves, sheep, and predator/prey relationships in the park from 1939-41. Built in the late 1920s by the Alaska Road Commission, the Murie cabin is located 43 miles into the park, just off the Park Road, in a dramatic setting on the East Fork of the Toklat River between Sable Pass and Polychrome Pass.
The park notes that artists who participate in the program must be comfortable in a wilderness setting. "The 14' x 16' cabin provides a rustic but well-equipped base in which to work and to explore, and has an outhouse, propane heater, range, oven, refrigerator, bunks with double beds, bedding, a full complement of cooking equipment, and a small resource library. There is no electricity or running water, but water jugs may be replenished at Park Ranger stations, and showers are available at the Toklat Ranger Station 12 miles west of the East Fork cabin."
In exchange for the use of the cabin, each artist is expected to produce and donate one piece of art to the park and offer at least one public presentation. Public programs should take advantage of the individual artist's skills and interests; examples include a slide lecture, demonstration, or workshop.
The donated work may be completed after return from the residency, but must be delivered to park officials no later than December 1. Denali National Park plans to display the donated works as frequently as possible, in the new Denali Park Visitor Center and elsewhere. The artist retains copyright to the donated work, but agrees to grant the National Park Service and Alaska Geographic Association full rights to reproduction of the work for educational purposes, use in park publications, exhibit interpretation, or as an independent teaching resource. Reproduction of the work for commercial purposes by the National Park Service or the Alaska Natural History Association will be negotiated with the artist on a case-by-case basis.
The Artist-in-Residence program at Denali National Park began in 2001. In 2007 Alaska Geographic, a non-profit partner, assumed the role of managing the park's program, providing logistical and financial support and program publicity. You can view an on-line gallery of works produced by previous participants in the program at this link.
The program is open to professional "two-dimensional visual artists and sculptors," and the deadline for applications is October 31. You'll find more details about the applications and the programs on the Alaska Geographic website. If you need additional information, you can contact Tim Rains, National Park Service Media Specialist, at Timothy_Rains@nps.gov, or call him during business hours (Alaska time) at (907) 683-6435.