Bere Point Research Artist Residency with Troy Bright summer 2019, in collaboration with the Sointula Art Shed

In addition to the Sointula Art Shed's regularly programmed artist residency, which takes place in a cottage and studio in the village of Sointula, on Malcolm Island, BC, we are working with our friend Troy Bright of Bere Point Research to start up a new artist residency consisting of field research with Troy.  Every summer for the past 22 years, Troy has set up a camp on the beach at Bere Point, Malcolm Island, to research the Northern Resident Orca population that frequents the area in the summer months, and sometimes come right in to the beach at Bere Point to rub their bodies on the smooth round rocks that accumulate there.  

Originally from Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, Troy first came to Sointula 22 years ago, drawn to the region by the orcas that come to feed in this area every summer.  While not officially trained as a scientist, Troy began conducting his own field research after first seeing orcas rubbing at Bere Point, and has spent the months of July, August, and September camped out at the beach studying and recording the whale activity there every summer since. 

For the Bere Point Research Artist Residency, we are working with Troy to establish a residency where an artist (or artists) will spend one or two weeks in August out at Bere Point with daily access to Troy's camp, hydrophone, and vast research and knowledge.  The artist will stay in a campsite at the Bere Point campground, which is a few minutes walk away from where Troy camps out.  At the end of their residency, the artist is invited to have a show in the Sointula Art Shed Window Gallery, and/or do a public presentation of their work and research with Troy, depending on the artist's wishes.  

The residency fee is $680 for two weeks or $340 for one week and covers:

- the fee to stay in the campground at Bere Point, with basic camping gear to be used for that time period provided
- unlimited daily access to Troy Bright and his research
- Car transportation from the ferry to Bere Point, and several scheduled weekly trips in to town for groceries, laundry, showers, and basic sight seeing
- Use of a bike and helmet we can provide

Artists are responsible for:

- Transportation to and from Malcolm Island
- All grocery and art supplies

Please note, there is no way to guarantee whale sightings.  However, we are scheduling this residency to happen in August as we feel that time frame will provide the best chance of seeing Northern Resident Orcas, as well as Humpback whales, with the possibility of also seeing the orcas beach rubbing behaviour.  Staying for two full weeks will increase the chances of seeing a beach rub, but again, there are no guarantees!

Applicants should also be aware that even in August, it can be quite cold, foggy, rainy, and windy out at the beach at Bere Point, and for the past few summers there have been full fire bans in effect all summer long in this region.  As such, we suggest artists bring many warm layers and are prepared for a rustic camping experience.
(The campground has no potable water, and uses outhouses, but we will bring water in and will also take the artists in to town for showers etc as needed.)

Also, as the artist will need to be out at the beach and campground for most of the time they are here, they won't be very close to the studio we have available at the Sointula Art Shed.  However, depending on how the artist works, we can help arrange for some sort of sheltered area in their camp site where some art making could happen - further details can be discussed based on the artist's wishes and needs. 

The 2019 application period is now complete, please check back in the fall for details about the Bere Point Research Artist Residency 2020.

Pictures courtesy of Troy Bright, Bere Point Research.