Ragdale is a non-profit artists’ community located on architect Howard Van Doren Shaw’s country estate in Lake Forest, IL, 30 miles north of Chicago. In 1976, Shaw’s granddaughter, Alice Judson Hayes, transformed her family’s summer home into an artist's retreat to provide time and space for artists to create important new work.
Today, Ragdale annually hosts nearly 200 visual artists, writers, composers, and interdisciplinary artists at all stages of their careers for 18-25 day residencies, making it one of the largest interdisciplinary artist communities in the country. Ragdale offers a retreat setting where at any given time, a dozen creative individuals experience uninterrupted time for dedicated work, a supportive environment, family-style dinners, and dynamic artist exchanges within a backdrop of 50 acres of idyllic prairie.
CREATIVE SABBATICALS PROVIDE A UNIQUE OPPORTUNITY TO TACKLE A CREATIVE PROJECT IN A SUPPORTIVE ENVIRONMENT.
Creative Sabbaticals are one- to three-week residencies tailored for people who may or may not be creative professionals, but who are interested in pursuing a creative project in an environment without distractions. Participants pay $1,500 per week and have access to all that Ragdale has to offer, including a live/work studio, all meals, and interaction with other creative professionals. A special jury reviews proposals and work experience. Applications are accepted and reviewed on a rolling basis.
Creative Sabbaticals take place during a scheduled residency session and follow the residency calendar. The dates listed below do not reflect availability.
2020 RESIDENCY SESSIONS
- January 6- 31 (25 days)
- February 3- 28 (25 days)
- March 2- 20 (18 days)
- March 30- April 17 (18 days)
- May 4- 22 (18 days)
- June 22- July 10 (18 days)
- July 27- August 14 (18 days)
- August 17- September 4 (18 days)
- September 14- October 2 (18 days)
- October 27- November 20 (18 days)
- December 1- 18 (18 days)
2021 RESIDENCY SESSIONS
1: January 4-January 29 (25 days)
2: February 1-February 26 (25 days)
3: March 1-March 21 (18 days)
4: March 29-April 16 (18 days)
5: May 3-21 (18 days)
6: June 21-July 9 (18 days)
7: July 26-August 13 (18 days)
8: August 16-September 3(18 days)
9: September 6-October 1 (25 days)
10: October 25-November 19 (25 days)
11: November 29-December 17 (18 days)
1. Must arrive on Monday and depart on a Friday, Saturday or Sunday.
2. 3PM check-in and 10AM check-out.
3. Minimum stay of 4 days, maximum of 25 days.
4. Creative Sabbatical fee is $1,500 for 7 days. The fee is prorated to the number of days spent in residence.
For more information please contact Amy Sinclair, Grants & Admissions Manager.
Please note, Ragdale can only send letters of acceptance if we are able to offer a Creative Sabbatical. Your application will remain on file. If you would like to update your availability to continue to be considered past the availability listed in your submitted application please contact Amy Sinclair firstname.lastname@example.org.
Applicants should submit project proposals through ragdale.org via the Submittable online portal no later than 11:59 pm on Sunday, March 22, 2020. Proposal review and notification will take place by March 27, 2020.
Applicants are encouraged to visit Ragdale prior to submitting their application. Projects will be sited on a variety of outdoor lawn and garden areas near the 1897 Arts and Crafts Ragdale House. In the event of rain, performances may move indoors. Photos of the Ragdale campus are available at ragdale.org. Proposals are open to any interpretation of the original Ragdale Ring but should adhere to the following guidelines:
1) The project must be mobile—able to be relocated to a variety of locations on Ragdale’s campus with minimal cost or effort.
2) The installation, in its entirety or parts, should accommodate a minimum of 150 seats (such as our guests’ picnic blankets and lawn chairs) as well as a stage area with a minimum size of 20’ x 20’.
3) The proposed stage may be built or consist of existing lawn, but should suitably and safely feature and support professional performers from a range of disciplines (music, dance, storytelling, etc.).
4) A light rain/sun shelter near the stage area is preferred to protect performers and electronic equipment.
5) A preliminary budget should be included that identifies expenses related to the $15,000 production grant. If the budget exceeds this grant, the proposal should include potential additional funding sources and in-kind donations.
6) The proposal and related budget must include plans for the reuse, recycling, and/or dispersal of all material used in the project.
7) Renderings and sketches should be included as part of the proposal.
8) Present evidence of your team’s qualifications in sufficient detail to demonstrate your capacity to complete the project as you have described it.
9) The winning team must provide its own insurance while constructing the project at Ragdale.
10) The project must meet safety requirements to be able to withstand the effects of outdoor conditions and public use.
11) The installation and its location are subject to approval by Ragdale staff as well as the City of Lake Forest.
For the 8th annual Ragdale Ring competition, we are introducing a theme to encourage thoughtful solutions around a singular yet robust topic. This year’s theme is Mobility. WHAT DOES MOBILITY MEAN FOR YOU AND WHAT CAN MOBILITY DO TO CHALLENGE CONVENTIONAL ARTIST/AUDIENCE INTERACTIONS IN THE RAGDALE RING? WHAT NEW FORMS OF PERFORMANCE MIGHT IT OFFER? PARADES? PROCESSIONS? WHAT IF THE RING ISN’T FIXED TO A SITE, BUT COULD BE CONFIGURED AT MULTIPLE SITES OVER THE COURSE OF THE SUMMER? COULD MOBILITY ACTIVATE THE ENTIRE FIVE-ACRE RAGDALE CAMPUS? IN YOUR COMPETITION ENTRY, PLEASE ADDRESS HOW YOUR DESIGN RELATES TO THIS THEME AS WELL AS THE OPPORTUNITIES IT OFFERS FOR PERFORMANCES, SITING, PROJECT LONGEVITY, ALTERNATIVE USES, AND MORE.
A completed application consists of:
1 Written Proposal – An explanation of up to 1,000 words that clearly describes the project and its relationship to the historic Ring as well as its anticipated use.
2 Visual Proposal – A selection of 5-8 digital images that show plans, renderings, and drawings of your proposed structure. Optionally, a 3-5 minute video can be included.
3 Previous Work Samples – A selection of 5 digital images that represent your portfolio of work. Each file submitted should have a title, date, and brief description of work.
4 Resume/CV – A current resume/CV for each team member should include information about education, work, and teaching experience, exhibition history (if applicable), awards, grants, residencies, and other relevant information, including links to websites, blogs, etc.
Submittable accepts documents (.pdf), images (.jpg, .jpeg, .png, .gif, .tif, .tiff, .bmp, .tga), audio (.mp3, .wma, .ogg, .flac), and video (.m4v, .mov, .mp4, .wmv, .flv, .asf, .mpeg, .mpg, .mkv).
AWARD AND 10-PERSON RESIDENCY
One project will be chosen. Its designers will be awarded a $15,000 production grant towards realizing the proposed project. The winning team will also receive a design-build residency for up to three weeks, which includes a studio plus full room and board for up to ten people during the months of May and June 2020. The project must be completed by June 12.
Architects, artists, and designers are invited to apply. Applicants do not need to be registered architects. Those outside of the Chicago area are eligible to apply, but additional funds for transportation will not be available. Production grant funds may be used for transportation as long as overall quality of the project is not sacrificed.
This application form is for the Ragdale Ring Design/Build Residency competition only. Please apply under the "Ragdale Residency Program 2021" for other residencies. Notification for the Ragdale Ring takes place March 27. This residency takes place May 25-June 12, 2020.
APPLICATION GUIDELINES for HIGH SCHOOL ARTS WEEK 2020
High School Arts Week at Ragdale takes place July 20-24, 2020 and offers intensive workshops in creative writing, visual arts and audio production.
The deadline for high school students applying for all workshops is Friday, May 8, 2020, 11:59 p.m. Notifications will be received around the week of May 18.
High School students grade level 9-12 from Chicago and the surrounding region are welcome to apply. Each year Ragdale accepts 24 students in Creative Writing, 24 in Visual Arts, and 12 students in Audio Production, following a competitive selection process.
We encourage students of all backgrounds and levels of experience to apply. Ragdale does not discriminate against anyone on the basis of age, disability, gender, origin, race, religion, or sexual orientation.
WHEN & WHERE
High School Arts Week will take place Monday through Friday, July 20-24 from 10am-4pm at the historic campus of The Ragdale Foundation, 1260 North Green Bay Road in Lake Forest.
Creative Writing: Creative Writing students will be assigned to either a short form prose writing workshop under the guidance of instructor Margaret Hawkins, author and educator, or a poetry/creative writing workshop under the guidance of Quraysh Ali Lansana, poet, editor and author. Students will be asked to choose their preference for either poetry or prose, though placement in either group cannot be guaranteed.
Visual Arts Intensive: Student artists under the guidance of Paulina Camacho, artist and educator, are invited to explore the concepts of site, space, and place through guided investigations in art, using the Ragdale grounds as an inspiration for creative engagement.
Puppetry Intensive: Students will work with staff from Third Coast Audio Festival to combine aspects of writing and storytelling with hands-on experiences using sound and recording equipment. Guest audio producers and a field trip to the WBEZ radio station studios in Chicago will be part of this new program offering. The week will culminate with student-produced work(s) recorded and shared as a live podcast.
All applicants submit electronic materials through the Submittable application portal. Please note the following requirements to complete your application:
- A completed online application form.
- A letter of reference from a teacher or school official who knows you personally and can address your suitability for the week-long intensive. Reference letters are confidential and are submitted electronically through Submittable.
- For applicants to the Writing Intensive, please attach two one-page writing samples. For applicants to the Visual Arts Intensive, please attach two images of your work. For applicants to the Audio Intensive, please attach a 30-second to 1-minute video or audio recording of the applicant in performance or examples of related written/narrative/storytelling. All media is acceptable. Most electronic file types and sizes are accepted.
Applications are reviewed by Ragdale staff and the program instructors. Evaluations of work are based on the following criteria:
- Work samples show evidence of originality and inventiveness.
- Work samples demonstrate quality and technical proficiency.
- References reflect the student's ability to work well with other students.
- Students will be selected from as large a range of area schools as possible, taking into consideration the merit of work samples submitted.
You will be notified of your admission status via email around the week of May 20, 2019.
For further assistance, please email Regin Igloria at email@example.com or phone 847.234.1063 ext. 26.