AiR programs in the Netherlands
Artist-in-residence programs are generally described as structures that offer time and space for artists to facilitate their artistic process or development. From the context of another location, artist-in-residence programs enable artists to connect to other networks of artists and curators, production facilities, experts from different fields, other social and cultural landscapes, etc. In short, objectives vary, just as the organizations who make it all happen.
In the Netherlands, there are circa 50 artist-in-residence programs active. This spectrum includes the well known institutional programs such as the Rijksakademie and the Ateliers in Amsterdam and the JvEyck Academie in Maastricht, programs that offer a specific expertise such as the European Ceramic Work Centre in Oisterwijk, or V2_ Lab for the Unstable Media in Rotterdam, programs that take place within a particular context such as Het Vijfde Seizoen at the terrain of a psychiatric hospital, inside of a fortress at Kunstfort Vijfhuizen or at the birthplace of Vincent Van Gogh at VanGoghHuis in Zundert.
The majority however consists of small independent initiatives that derive from a long history of artist-collectives, such as Stichting B.a.d. and Het Wilde Weten in Rotterdam, or M4 guest studio, AiR WG, Nieuw en Meer and Kanaal 10 in Amsterdam. Other examples of artist-and curator-run programs are 1646 in The Hague, Hotel Maria Kapel in Hoorn, Kunsthuis SYB in Beetsterzwaag, Extrapool in Nijmegen. And at the same time, small artist-run-initiatives keep popping up, in the cities as well as in small villages in the countryside.