Accommodation. Modest, private furnished rooms on the farm. There is studio space in our continually evolving former dairy barn. Built in 1915, the barn is a beautiful example of the Dutch Gambrel style that we have gradually adapted to the working needs of artists.
Food. Fresh farm produce from our 4 acre garden that artists help to grow is provided. We also provide many staples such as rice, pasta, flour, grains, dry beans, oils, spices and occasional bonus items from friends and neighbors. Residents can expect to purchase their own supplemental foodstuffs.
A gorgeous setting. The 40-acre farm is located in the unglaciated region of south central Wisconsin about an hour drive north of Madison. The surrounding land consists of rolling hills and thousands of acres of beautiful woods and farmland. We are 4 miles from Reedsburg (population 9,000), with access to the Baraboo River and the 400 Bike Trail. We are 7 miles from Mirror Lake State Park and 18 miles from Devil’s Lake. We are within an hour’s drive of various Folk Art sites and 12 miles from the Wisconsin Dells where there is both an Amtrak station and a Greyhound bus stop.
Studio space. Each artist is provided with a private, screened-in studio space in the barn. The barn also has large open common areas as well as a stage. There is a ceramics area that includes electric kilns and kick wheel. A variety of outbuildings may serve as work space depending on artist’s needs. There are also woods, pasture and gardens for those interested in environmental projects. We share the land with a variety of animals: cows, chickens, a dog, and barn cats.
Tools. There are a wide variety of tools available the for artists but since they are used by many people with a range of experience we cannot always guarantee their condition.
Stuff. Piles of abandoned farm implements and other detritus (with permission) may be used.
Exhibition and collaboration opportunities. Wormfarm hosts an exhibit of the work of resident artists each fall in the downtown, Reedsburg, Woolen Mill Gallery adjacent to our offices in a restored 1891 building listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The Gallery may host exhibits, lectures, and special events throughout the growing season.
Caveat: The Wormfarm is not for everyone. A residency here is not a retreat but rather an engagement in the life of a working farm. Artists will get away from the day-to-day concerns of home in a beautiful rural setting and have much of their time to devote to their practice, but this is a working farm, a living organism of which you will become a part. We look for artists for whom this engagement is an attractive and alluring prospect.
Like most farms it is full of hay and farm animals. Anyone with serious allergies should either be properly medicated or reconsider. Cell phone service is spotty but high-speed internet is available on the farm.
If selected, artists will arrange their own transportation. Staff can pick up residents from Madison airport or Wisconsin Dells train depot or bus stop.
Contribution to farm operations for 15 hours per week. This usually involves working in the 3+ acre organic garden and may include weekend mornings. Sustainable agriculture is central to the Institute’s mission and involvement in the process is an important part of a residency. Depending on the resident artist’s skills, contributions could also include construction, de-construction, general maintenance or newsletter input.
Sharing with the Community. Although a large audience is in no way guaranteed, we have a growing following and Reedsburg is a great place to experiment. Here are some options:
- Public reading, performance or artist talk
- Exhibit at the Woolen Mill Gallery
- Conduct a workshop/class (for longer residencies)
- Possible participation in the annual Fermentation Fest hosted by Wormfarm in October
- Other options that may present themselves
Applications are accepted year-round, however our primary review period is January through February.
If you are interested, click here to apply online!