We are pleased to announce a new series of artist residency expeditions into the vast, otherworldly Atacama Desert, Chile. La Wayaka Current’s, Desert 23°S program presents a rare opportunity to research and develop your creative practice in one of the driest environments on our planet, at the National Nature Reserve of Flamingos. This region closer resembles the surface of Mars than Earth, offers the most optimal conditions for astronomical observations in the world and preserves ancient archeological sites beneath the sand. Within this arid landscape, lives an unbelievably diverse and rich ecosystem that remains due to the knowledge of indigenous peoples who fight to protect the area from exploitative, water-intensive mining.
Our fluid, site-responsive program introduces artists-in-residence to the local ecology, history and culture of the place, as well as exploring contemporary socio-political concerns whilst presenting reciprocal benefits to local communities both socially and economically through our presence and exchange. In our fifth year of operation, we cultivate spaces in remote environments that nourish and encourage space for personal and professional growth, through experiential nodes of learning with a focus on research and experimentation to manifest inspiration in an outdoor creative space, beyond a conventional studio or institutional context.
Through this program, we engage with new ecological and cultural perspectives in a multitude of ways, at a complex time of global climate change and mass extinction. We wish to challenge and expand our ecological awareness as creative practitioners. Promoting necessary dialogues between artists from around the world, indigenous cultures, and the environment around us. We operate as a non-profit, artist-led initiative registered in UK and Chile, working nomadically between South, Central America, and Northern Europe. La Wayaka Current is run by an international collective of people experienced in different fields of arts, cultural and environmental subjects.
Duration of residency
Our programs are run for a duration of 3 weeks with an option to extend to 6 weeks on specific dates. (Enquire for shorter or longer residency availability)
Residents will live in the heart of a rural desert oasis, full of native trees, animals and agricultural crops, with no phone signal or internet, residents will be taken away from distractions at a time of hyper-connectivity and technological dependency. Here on an indigenous family farm, artists will be living/working in the land and sharing the communal shelter made predominantly of earth, recycled and natural materials. Rooms will be shared between two persons, with private rooms available on request. (prior to arrival)
Disciplines, work equipment and assistance
This is a multi-disciplinary program open to artists alongside creative practitioners such as musicians, writers, curators, activists, scientists, and others. Residents are encouraged to challenge their practice in the location, be resourceful and respond to local methods, materials, basic tools, and equipment within the community and isolated natural environment.
Studio / Workspace
Participants will be encouraged to use the outdoor vast desert environment as their studio and daily interactions with the local community and environment as their source of learning and inspiration.
Fees and support
We currently offer financial aid, support in seeking funding from other institutions, work-exchange opportunities and, bursaries on all our programs. Our aim is to make this residency accessible for all those who wish to take part. Contact us directly to find out about our current fees and funding opportunities.
Expectations towards the artist
Artists will be free to choose to take part in programmed activities alongside their self-directed practice according to their interests. Depending on the nature of their project residents will be given opportunities to showcase works or work-in-progress.