So week 3 & 4 you ready?
As time moves forward I finish my 2 week internship and there’s a 4 day break before the next group arrives! I take the time for additional solitude explore the town and really take in the stillness. I move my studio to one of the towers in the chateau and settle in for the rest of the trip. It’s marvelous space with two windows plenty of wall and floor space as well as a much needed “napping couch”. I move out of the room and in top of the chateau to an awesome 3 bedroom apartment in the village.
Everyday I woke up to a view of the forest, chimney smoke billowing out of worn brick houses, the sound of the bread truck visiting the villagers and watching them tend to their gardens. It was a perfect setting, my room was spacious, the floorboards creaked, windows perfectly situated and had a large enough sil for me to sit out lean outside for the view. There were planks of wood crafted into the ceiling and old door knobs and furniture it really felt like refreshingly old and new at the same time. I thought to myself, I could make a tiny house out of the space and be completely fulfilled.
The funniest part of moving to the village is zipping around in the golf carts provided by the chateau , I found a few spots by the river that runs thru the village to read and have even quieter moments. A previous resident artist gifted me with some leftover hash she obtained from a villager and I created a one hit pipe out of a wine cork, it worked pretty damn well haha, here I was thinking I would be straight laced and not think of smoking but alas it’s found me all the way in Orquevaux! I am glad for it because even tho I’m in this gorgeous place and near my little river spot , left over ptsd and depression can still come thru so I’m glad for it.
During the 4 day break I travel with Rose, Ziggy, Tatianna, and Veronika to the walled city of Langres about 1hr from Orquevaux. We and explore the antique shops and do a history walk in search of Denis Diederot home, school and museums, I highly suggest looking up this French philosopher if your a history buff. But this person and their ideals were one of Ziggy’s figures of inspiration when creating Chateau Orquevaux Artist Residency and one of the original owners of the Chateau itself. The town had such and old yet modern look to it , we walked part of the way along the fortified walls of the city looking out at the land villages in the distance, visited the large and awe inspiring architecture of the villages churches and buildings , and had lunch in the city square at Cafe Brasserie Le Foy.
Anticipation for the new residents was high! Chef Marie and Remy’s family came and prepared food for the welcome dinner and me tatianna and marie's family would work as one bad ass team cleaning and doing laundry for the upcoming residents. Since my residency officially started I offered to help so my duties were super light and I spent the rest of the day working on my “Ancients” painting. Later that day I met the new intern Maddy a quirky Canadian girl who was there for a month long internship and trip around Europe to figure out life after school. What a great place to be for a month and I wish her the most enlightening and sweetest journey.
The first resident I meet is Tom, a sweet gay man who was going thru some intense jet lag and just drove 3 hrs straight from the airport to the chateau. So naturally I offered him a celebratory drink of white wine lol, we chat for a bit and more people started to show up, and adorable gay boy named Kenny who works silk textiles , Nina a Swedish speaking finish woman with an over all bright color palette and a love for swimming, Krista a talented vocalist and musician and one woman show from Ohio, Feliciaty a cheery kiwi (from New Zealand), Yael and Sarit best friends and writers all the way from Tel Aviv, Isreal, Jean a lover of plain air oil painting from New Orleans, Alex a young Reiki and energy worker, oil painter very sweet and ready to laugh, Justin a super cool dude and stained glass artist from philly (I can tell we were gonna be chateau buddies) Ginette a Chinese woman from New Zealand who’s expertise and talent for watercolor paintings were out of this world! I grew to really admire these artists as the weeks went on and as boundaries were torn down and hearts started opening.
So I realize my blog entries are freaking long lol so besides this detailed intro I am going to bullet point experiences from here on , thanks for getting this far!
- During one of Veronikas sketch walks we go up to ‘The Virgin’ a steep uphill journey to the top of the hill, thru the surrounding woods of the village, we see a statue was situated to look over the village as a way of protection of the soldiers and villagers during WW2 when the Nazi brought their bitches asses to town.
- Krista and I take a golf cart to get her mind off issues with her rental car, and we went to the edge of town to sing to the cows and smoke some hashish, after we explore the vineyard and hang in the beautiful grove and observe the goats trotting around and explore the river of steps.
- A wedding party shows up to the chateau to take photos and all the artists happen to see , we were a bit confused at first cause a ton of people kept showing up. This moment was very joyful and the bride and groom okayed us to take a photo!
- We take another trip to the town of Langres for a sketch walk and exploration of the city, we split up and re convened in different groups, we had expresso s and sketch different parts of the town, eventually people came together and had a tasty lunch at Le Foy again. I have Moules et Frites (mussels and French fries) for the first time super tasty and was super happy when we go back to community dinner of fish and chips.
- We have really chill bonfires under the moonlight drink whiskey and wine and call each other fire king every time we sparked the flames.
- The legend of the chateau ghost is created! So with this one, everyone is very aware of how old this house is. So we all chat about our different experiences with the creaks and groans of the house, footsteps and shadows we all become quite enamored (and slightly worried lmao) with sharing ghost stories.
- Kenny creates really cool textile instillation in the stable studios in the underdeveloped part. We all take turns viewing this cool piece. Rose claims that there are spirits and doesn’t feel right about some parts of the house. Which makes sense, a lot of the dark hallways and rooms were cool but spooky. Later in the week we find old portrait paintings of that weren’t there, one had slash marks thru it, a number of people confirmed this. *gasp* the mystery gets deeper…
That concludes part 2 of my blog stay tuned for part 3!
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