Where to begin? 

This is my beloved new place of work for the next 7 weeks and here is why I love it…

Kjell Hahn (my boss) has created something really beautiful here. 

The residency program and its integration of the Onishi community provides a unique experience for the artists and staff alike. The last group of artists we worked with were unanimous in saying that Shiro Oni is special. And although I’ve only had a one week glimpse of this place, I completely agree.

So what is an art residency?

For those of you who don’t know, an artist residency is a 6-7 week program where an artist works on their craft and participates in different workshops. The end goal is to put on an exhibition highlighting what the artists have worked on and typically all the art work shows influences from their stay.

Before they leave, Kjell asks that they donate a piece of work behind to contribute to the growing gallery he has at the studio. 

This past week my internship partner (Chase) and I got to see the end of Group 2’s 6 week journey in Onishi. We got to help out with the layout of the exhibition, creating the floor plan map, setting out posters, photographing different moments throughout the exhibition process and just helping the artists with any of their finishing touches. It was a busy week but it was really cool to see it all come together.

It was also really incredible to witness the group’s chemistry and relationship with the town at the end point of the residency. A good number of the community and some people from out of town came for a great showing and for the artist talks later in the afternoon. 

At the end of the big day there was a party at the Kinuya building, celebrating a wonderful exhibition and residency. It was a bittersweet end to their stay, many goodbyes and thank you’s. It was hard even for me being here for one week, to say goodbye to all of the interesting people I met from Denmark, Sweden, Britain, Australia, Germany, Florida, all over the world.

But, being able to start our internship with the exhibition gave us great insight towards what we are working towards with the next group. We now had an idea for the end goal which gave us so many more ideas to help expand and improve the program — an exciting opportunity — especially for a nerd like me who loves brainstorming ideas and planning things.

Cheers to the next 7 weeks 🙂

Here are some photos I took of the exhibition: 

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