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Annual Residency Application Deadline - June 30

This activity is made possible by the voters of Minnesota through a grant from the Southeastern Minnesota Arts Council thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts & cultural heritage fund.

Upcoming Residencies:


Artist Residencies in Lanesboro: Inspiration and Integration

Nestled in the valley of southeast Minnesota’s Root River, Lanesboro is a small town with a unique atmosphere—a hidden gem.  With a slower pace of life, Lanesboro has no chain stores nor fast-food franchises nor stoplights.  Artists from around the country continue to discover that Lanesboro is a special place in which to create art and to live, if even for a few weeks.

Lanesboro Arts Center’s two core values that relate directly to the Residency Program are inspiration and integration. To truly serve as an inspiration to the region, Lanesboro Arts Center's Residencies encourage emerging artists to create new work and to integrate this work into the larger community of Lanesboro. The community component of each residency seeks to make art blend into the structure of community as a part of everyday life - engaging everyday people in an ongoing artistic dialog.

The Lanesboro Arts Center Residency Program offers two-week and four-week residencies to emerging artists each year. The program is designed to provide opportunities for emerging artists to create new work.

I came to a critical point in a book project I’d been struggling with and was able to address it and give the time I needed to fix it. . . The experience furthered my work by 60 pages and a load of editing. -- Sarah Stonich, 2010 Resident Artist

The residency was invaluable. I think the most important thing about it was realizing what a positive impact I can have on people around me through art. -- Aaron Bommarito, 2004 Resident Artist

Artists from all disciplines are encouraged to apply. Living and work space is provided as well as project facilitation by Arts Center staff.  Stipends of up to $2,500 for a four-week residency are provided for up to six artists each year.

Julie Johnson

Elisa Korenne
March 2010

Cheryl LeClair-Sommer
September 2007
Morgan Grayce Willow
January 2008
Jeff Eisenberg
January 2006
Lanesboro Arts Center is a member of the Alliance of Artist Communities.

Past Residencies:
Cecilia BalliMarch 2014
From Austin, Texas, writer Cecilia Balli worked on her first book, a creative nonfiction work about the drawing and re-drawing of the U.S.-Mexican borderline and the building of a 700-foot border "wall". She met with Minnesotans/Iowans one evening at the American Legion in Lanesboro, at a Mexican-themed potluck and round-table discussion. She found this event to be a pivotal point in her residency, learning through this dialogue with midwestern folks about how national security policies have transformed life in border communities, and what the word 'border' means to them. She also met with the 12th grade 'social issues' class at Lanesboro School, discussing border issues and giving students a different perspective from someone who grew up on the border in Brownsville, TX. 

Inkfish – April/May 2013
Puppet theater group from Jackson Heights, NY, Inkfish worked on developing its production of "Digger", exploring character designs and a storyboard. This project began when Inkfish considered the narrative possibilities of holes and the man who digs them in conjunction with Dante's Inferno – perhaps the ultimate descent into a hole. Inkfish conducted a presentation to 4th, 5th & 6th grade students at the Lanesboro School, taught a puppet building rapid prototyping & manipulation workshop to local kids and adults, and talked about their residency in a shadow puppet demonstration at the St. Mane Theatre.

Matt Duckett – February 2013
From LaCrosse, WI and most recently Chicago, IL, portrait painter Matt Duckett is a talented painter and a musician; he plays old-time Irish folk music on tenor banjo & guitar. While in residence, he worked on developing sketches for and painting for 5-6 portraits while in Lanesboro. LAC hosted an acoustic music jam session with Matt Duckett at the St. Mane Theatre with local and regional musicians, gathering together community members to make music as well as gathering together community members to make music as well as to make connections for Matt with some potential portrait subjects.

Christopher Robinson – November/December 2012 Poet
Christopher Robinson completed a manuscript of his work 'Air Become Sinewed', finished a first draft of a new manuscript of sonnets, presented a public poetry reading, and led a 4-part poetry workshop with 5th and 6th grade students at the Lanesboro School: "I think I got the kids excited about poetry as a form of expression and left them with many tools in their poetry toolbox. They also taught me a lot; they reminded me to think in ways I'd forgotten as an adult." Chris is from Federal Way, Washington.

Tucker Hollingsworth – April-May 2012
“I photograph at night,” says photographer Tucker Hollingsworth, from Minneapolis. His residency dates were strategically planned to include the full moon on May 5 and maximize lighting potential. “In this setting, light acts differently, imposing order on the landscape and becoming a palpable painterly force,” he explains. During the residency, Tucker developed three bodies of work: ‘noise’ prints, panoramas, and night images utilizing moonlight and vehicle headlights. He also worked with music and art students in 3rd – 12th grade at the Lanesboro School, delving into the connections between music and art.

Dave Beck - January 2012
Focusing on both the art of rosemaling in the Midwest, and more specifically on Per Lysne's influence and work, Dave Beck’s 2-week Residency in Lanesboro took him to the Vesterheim Museum in Decorah, Iowa, and to visits with area Lanesboro residents. He used this historical research to create a contemporary digital 3d animation that is inspired by a specific Lysne plate in the Vesterheim collection, and presented an Artist Talk about his work for community members.

Gwendolyn Rouse – April 2011
During her 2-week residency, Wendy painted a ‘Lanesboro Still Life,' incorporating objects representing Lanesboro lent by community members.   She also hosted class tours with the 4th grade and the high school painting class from the Lanesboro School, and researched regional flora and fauna for another painting.

Katherine Schaefer – March 2011
During her two-week residency, writer Katherine Schaefer worked on pre-publication revisions to her memoir—about tragedy in the life of a Minnesota farm family in the 1970s, as well as a novel-in-progress about the love, lust, and loss of land in three generations of a family farm from the Depression to the 1980s farm mortgage crisis. She led a memoir writing workshop for teens through octogenarians.

Julie Johnson – January 2011
Flutist and composer Julie Johnson was in Lanesboro for a 4-week residency, working on research and writing for a new album based on Minnesota folk music.  She worked with various community members on gathering songs, and performed both at the Lanesboro School and at the St. Mane Theatre in a concert with her band “Julie Johnson & the No-Accounts”.  The concert, “The Banks of the Auplaine,” featured new compositions and roots/folk blues music of Minnesota, with Julie Johnson on flute and bass flute; Doug Otto on vocals and guitar; and Andrew Druckrey on vocals, mandolin, and resonator guitar.  From Minneapolis, Julie Johnson has performed classical, jazz, folk, blues, and world music in concert halls, Italian cathedrals, Texas juke joints, horse barns, and jazz clubs.

Elisa Korenne – March 2010
In Lanesboro for a 2-week residency, Elisa Korenne worked on developing southeastern-Minnesota focused material for the Minnesota’s Ordinarily Unsung Concert - three songs and four stories from subjects that are otherwise lost to the historical canon.  She also presented a workshop with Lanesboro’s own Rhubarb Sisters in a song- and lyrics- sharing format.  “Elisa helped us explore our musical possibilities and create ideas to enhance our program and musicianship,” says Rhubarb Sister & local school music teacher Robin Scheu.

Sarah Stonich – January/February 2010
During her 4-week residency, Sarah worked on finishing a volume of essays about northern Minnesota entitled Shelter: Places Lost and Found.  She also  met with a local book club to discuss her most recent novel, The Ice Chorus, and presented a Reading and Writer’s Round-table Discussion in the gallery.  Internationally-acclaimed author Sarah Stonich is well-known for her fiction novels These Granite Islands and The Ice Chorus Shelter is Sarah's first full-length volume of non-fiction, an autobiographical collection of essays.

Kate Lynn Hibbard – February/March 2009
During her three-week Residency in Lanesboro, Kate Lynn worked on researching and writing poems for a poetry manuscript focusing on the experience of women on the homestead frontier of the Great Plains.  She toured Historic Forestville and the Lanesboro History Museum, gathering data for new poems.  She also presented a community workshop on creative writing using historical artifacts. Kate Lynn Hibbard is a writer from St. Paul, Minn.; she has received the Astraea Lesbian Writers Finalist Award (2006), a Hedgebrook Writing Residency (2005), a Gerald Cable Book Award (2004), and a Jerome Foundation Travel and Study Grant (2003)

Katt Lissard – April 2008
During her two-weeks in Lanesboro, Katt worked on an Interactive Community Performance/Installation Project for Earth Day, with the culminating celebration taking place on a cold, windy day in Sylvan Park in conjunction with the Root River Valley Earth Day Celebration.  The project addressed issues of mankind's most precious resource, water (including the water that went astray in our local flood of August 2007), and what we as a community value and hold dear.  Katt lives in New York City and also travels to Lesotho, Africa with the Winter/Summer Institute where she helps to create collaborative community theater pieces about issues connected to water, poverty and HIV/AIDS.

Morgan Grayce Willow – January 2008

Morgan worked on poems for her collection entitled Barn during her two-week Residency in Lanesboro.  She was inspired by local farmers in a round-table discussion, where folks shared stories about their history with barns and farming.  From Minneapolis, Morgan's poems have been featured in a number of collaborations, including Poetry in Motion

Ed Bok Lee – December 2007
During his two-week Residency in Lanesboro, Ed worked on writing stories to complete the collection for his manuscript of travel-based prose. He also led a writing workshop for high school students, and gave a spoken word poetry performance with three of the students, held at the St. Mane Theater. Ed lives and writes in Minneapolis, Minn.

Stephen Ausherman – October 2007
Coming to Lanesboro from Albuquerque, New Mexico, Stephen worked in and around Lanesboro on a series of short videos in collaboration with community members, including Kim Westphal and Mike Zawislak. Appearing soon: a web video of Stephen's work.

Cheryl LeClair-Sommer – September 2007
A soft pastel painter from Little Canada, Minn., Cheryl painted outdoor sketches of cityscapes of Lanesboro, working on night scenes with contrasting indoor/outdoor lighting. She also taught a class with local 3rd grade students.

Käthe Oien - February 2007
Coming to Lanesboro from Norway, Käthe worked with local residents of varying ages, looking at culture and heritage. She continued to correspond with them from Norway via the Internet for the next few months, created a body of work for exhibit at Cornucopia during the 2008 Ibsen Festival. An acrylic painter, Käthe also uses photographs and digital manipulation to create her work.

Anat Fort – July 2005
Anat Fort, born in Israel, is a jazz composer and pianist living in Brooklyn, NY. Commissioned to write "Tzohar" for string orchestra and improvising piano, and "Ktanot" for chamber group, Anat has had her music premiered at the Tel-Aviv Biennial for Contemporary Music. As part of her residency in Lanesboro, Fort performed two short concerts in Lanesboro and Winona.

Tiffany Besonen – July 2005As a mixed media sculptor and storyteller, Tiffany Besonen recycles historical and found materials into stories about identity, motherhood and family. Her metaphoric forms represent the layers of expectations, history and reality in building family and identity today. During her residency, Tiffany created new mixed media work, including a collaborative sculpture created with Lanesboro community members.

Rachael Hanel – June 2005
Rachael Hanel grew up in southern Minnesota as the daughter of a “Digger O’Dell, a small-town gravedigger. A writer and journalist, Rachael spent two weeks revising her first novel – a memoir of her father and her childhood. During her stay, her book proposal was accepted by the Minnesota Historical Society Press. Rachael’s outreach activites included a free writing workshop at the Chatfield Library.

Paul Mihas – June 2005
Paul Mihas is originally from Minnesota. A writer now living in Carrboro, North Carolina, he the son of Greek immigrants and a cancer survivor. Paul spent two weeks working on new short stories and revising his novel, The Groom’s Dowry, which tells the story of two Greek-American children growing up in small town Wyoming . As part of his outreach, Paul led writing exercises with cancer survivors at the Mayo Clinic and in Lanesboro.

Dominic Orlando - September 2004
A playwright originally from New York city and most recently from Minneapolis, MN, Dominic Orlando drafted his play, “Heart of Earth,” while in Lanesboro for 4 weeks.  A longtime Chekhov fan, this play is inspired by “The Three Sisters.”  Characters in the play explore three questions--which are the same questions for Americans, for Russians, for everyone, really--Where will I live?  How will I live?  Who will love me? During his stay, Dominic visited area farms with the goal of getting farm life in his blood and thus into the characters of “Heart of Earth.”

Elaine Romero - August 2004
A playwright from Tucson, AZ, Elaine Romero drafted and held a reading of her new full-length play, LIKE HEAVEN.  With four female characters, the play develops the friendship of two women as they cross paths while one is arriving to and one is departing from a small town.  While in Lanesboro, Elaine also led a "Quick New Play" workshop, involving community members in writing and performing 5-minute plays.

Quiara Alegria Hudes - July 2004
A playwright from Providence, RI, Quiara Alegria Hudes has expanded her play "Coconut Therapy" from a 45-minute piece to a full-length piece, with the goal of touring it nationally upon completion. The play explores immigration and assimilation in Puerto Rico and Philadelphia, and how it affects the characters' lives. Ranging in age from 12 to 93, the characters are based on interviews with the women in Quiara's family.

Camille Gage - June 2004

Lanesboro residents and visitors were engaged in an interactive reflection on citizenship and the American community through Camille Gage's residency project, entitled "American Visions." Camille is a mixed-media artist from Minneapolis, MN.

Aaron Bommarito - May 2004
Aaron photographically recorded pinhole projections by creating camera obscurae inside historic Fillmore County buildings and structures. Aaron also worked with 5th and 6th grade students at the Lanesboro School, demonstrating the pinhole technique and helping them to create pinhole cameras. Aaron is a pinhole photographer from Eagan, MN.

Whitney Tuthill - January 2004

A ceramic artist from Minneapolis, MN, Whitney worked with high school art students at the Lanesboro School to create a ceramic relief map, showing the Lanesboro area landscape. As a result of his residency, CAC's kiln has been installed at the school for use by students and for CAC classes. Whitney also produced new round ceramic relief sculptures during his residency.

Mary Eischen - September 2002 Mary created a banner for public display in Lanesboro, involving members of the community and celebrating Lanesboro's commitment to community and to the
arts. Mary is a fiber artist from Winona, MN.

Mary Bergs - August 2002 - a 2D/3D visual artist from Minneapolis, MN, Mary created an impermanent visual dialogue regarding perceptions of beauty amongst the residents of Lanesboro (installation of objects).

Coral Lambert - July 2002 - Coral, a cast iron sculptor from New Orleans, LA, conducted a public cast iron event and outdoor sculpture exhibition, including work made through public sculpture workshops.

Maremi Hooff - June 2002 - A painter from Arlington, VA, Maremi created a painting that recognized a regional dish or recipe through the aid of community participation.

Keith Holmes - May 2002 - Keith worked on making a series of photographic portraits of Lanesboro
community members. He plans to work these images into a public art piece using bricks or other suitable building material. Keith is a photo-sculpture artist from Alexandria, MN.

Laine Cunningham - November 2001
A writer from Asheboro, NC, Laine completed a draft of her novel "The Message Stick," the story of a bi-racial Australian Aborigine. She also taught children and adults in a writing / "dot-dot dream painting" workshop, and presented a new chapter of her novel at a community reading.

Erik Pearson - October 2001
An oil painter from Superior, WI, Erik painted the first five paintings in a series based on a song he composed. He also taught adult drawing classes and visited school classrooms, educating students about his work.

Lanesboro Arts Center | PO Box 152 | 103 Parkway Ave N | Lanesboro, MN 55949
507-467-2446 | [email protected]
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Memorial Day through Oct. 31: Mon-Thurs 10-5, Fri-Sat 10-7, Sun 11-4.