The Agencia Española de Colaboración Internacional y Desarrollo – the Spanish Agency for International Collaboration and Development – invested funds from 2008 – 2012 in an informal organization, Residencias en Red IberoAmerica – IberoAmerican Residencies Network – that intended to organize, unite, and strengthen a network of artist residencies throughout those regions. This was to give them access to shared resources they needed to survive, as exists for North American artist residencies through the Alliance of Artist Communities, and for European (and other) artist residencies through Res Artis. AECID pulled the plug on this incipient network and its 26 members in 2012. Since then, informal, more localized artist residency networks have sprung up, while ArtMotile, the network of Spanish residencies, closed its doors in 2017. There are 22 residencies in Argentina alone. In Brazil, the Fundacao Nacional de Artes – the National Arts Foundation – in 2014 published a directory of 191 residencies throughout the country, and there is another category of 600 entities that “receive artists.” 9 artist residencies are in the process of being established in indigenous communities in the U.S., Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Chile, Venezuela, and Argentina.
New residencies are springing up in Nicaragua, Cuba, Uruguay, Bolivia, Guyana, and Haiti. Why? What local, regional, national, and international needs do these artist communities serve? How do they fit into a new global wave of cultural/creative/sustainable/eco-tourism? This proposal aims to get artists, arts promoters, government tourism agencies, arts funders, Latin Americanists, and others talking about the “how” and the “why” of this scarcely-examined emerging phenomenon.