What's it called, you know those umm...
October 24, 2009 2:16 AM   Subscribe

What is a place called when it is a one or two person self-contained 'retreat' set up for writers/artists to get away from it all to write their masterpiece/compile their exhibition pieces etc?

We are looking to expand our accommodation range. We have an idea in mind at one location on our property (great views) for a studio cabin and deck. I am thinking of promoting it to writers and artists as a place they can go and create.

But in doing the preliminary market research I am stumped as to my search terms. Writers Retreat brings up places that cater to a group of writers and have support people there to help with their work. Ditto Writers Studio.

What terms could I use to search for other like places?

And, as an ancillary question, does anyone know any places that advertise themselves as such a place?
posted by Kerasia to Grab Bag (10 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
I think what you're looking for is "artist/writer residency."
posted by milarepa at 3:09 AM on October 24, 2009

Mightn't you be overthinking this? If you can't think of this highly specific term to search for, it seems likely that the artists and writers you'd like to attract won't think of it either.

I think 'retreat,' 'studio,' and even 'cabin' all sound good. I just searched for "artist's cabin rates" and got several hits that seem to be in the vein of what you're proposing. "Writer's retreat rates" turned up some more.

I associate 'residency' with an arrangement where an institution provides housing and other necessities at the institution's expense, i.e. not a rental situation.
posted by jon1270 at 4:02 AM on October 24, 2009

I've heard it described by musicians as "The Woodshed"...I think
posted by rakish_yet_centered at 5:49 AM on October 24, 2009

Yaddo offers 2 week to 2 month residencies to artists, writers, etc. They call themselves an artists' community. This may not be a great term for you, since you'd like to host only one to two people. I think "residency" might be the word you're looking for, though.
posted by pemberkins at 8:27 AM on October 24, 2009

Here in New England they're sometimes called "colonies", but artist residency seems to be the common term. There's a list of them here. The thing is, most of them have a faculty and organized programs, and it sounds like you are just offering the accommodation. As such, I'd market it as an "artist's retreat." Keep in mind this is a pretty narrow market, since most artists have no money. A "romantic getaway cabin" would probably pull a lot more business.
posted by beagle at 8:29 AM on October 24, 2009

Ah, yes, and I should also mention that Yaddo does NOT do organized programs, workshops, etc.; nor does it provide supplies except for some specialized large equipment. They really just offer studio space and quiet time. So, it can be done without the organized programs!

Beagle does, however, raise a good point - money. Yaddo has no fee for residency, just a small application fee. They are supported by an endowment and donations. This is obviously not what you're looking to do. Depending on how much money you're looking to charge, it may indeed be a narrow market.
posted by pemberkins at 8:40 AM on October 24, 2009

"Residency" carries several connotations that you may not intend:

1. It implies long-term stays.
2. It implies that it might be fully or partly funded (as in a writer- or artist-in-residence program)
3. It might even imply that the art or writing produced should be somehow related to the place where the residency is being offered — this being a fairly common feature of writer or artist-in-residence programs.

I would call it a writer's and artist's cabin. Or a cabin for writers and artists. Or neither, since writers and artists will search for "quiet cabin in the woods" or whatever just like anyone else.
posted by game warden to the events rhino at 9:10 AM on October 24, 2009

Yeah, nix on residency, which comes with a whole passel o' connotations.

I'd call it an artist's or writer's cottage, myself. "Cabin" puts me in mind of chopping wood and other vigorous rustic pursuits, which might not figure into your artist's thing.
posted by mumkin at 12:24 PM on October 24, 2009

Thanks all, especially for the links. I under-thought about the fact I was over-thinking this.
posted by Kerasia at 1:30 PM on October 24, 2009

Another important aspect of Yaddo and other such colonies is that you have to apply and be accepted on the basis of your work. I assume you are not going to be going through applications and reading manuscripts and renting to the most accomplished artists. I would imagine that you might rent even to individuals such as M.Keane, Bob Ross, and perhaps even Morris Katz, the world's fastest artist.

posted by DMelanogaster at 4:48 PM on October 24, 2009

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