Looking back: Kimi Eisele's residency in Sitka

  • Posted on: 6 September 2016
  • By: Peter
Just about a year ago, Kimi Eisele arrived in Sitka for a two month residency with the Island Institute sponsored by the Rasmuson Foundation's Artist Residency Program.
Looking back, it's pretty incredible what she came up with in the course of the two months here. She came with a relatively loose plan for her stay here; she was interested in using the time to uncover some new facets of her creative practice while devising a project in response to the place and community as she came to know it better. In the course of her time here, she worked on at least five distinct projects. As her residency unfolded, she took a particular interest in the plight of the Yellow Cedar, which is losing habitat in southeast Alaska due to warming weather as the roots – un-insulated by winter snowpack – become more vulnerable to flash freezing. While in Sitka, Kimi collaborated with Robert Woolsey from the KCAW staff to produce a story about the Yellow Cedar. It can be heard here:
She also worked on a shadow play about the yellow cedar, and presented it at the close of her residency. You can watch her production of In/Out of the Shadows: A Yellow Cedar Tale here: 

In/Out of the Shadows: A Yellow Cedar Tale from Kimi Eisele on Vimeo.

You can also hear an interview with Kimi on Raven Radio:  
Early in Kimi's visit, we produced a booklet collecting together Kimi's writing, artwork, and ideas. You can browse it here:  
Kimi spent some of her time in Sitka in conversation with the landscape through dance, stillness, and photography; she hosted an event offering duets with yellow cedar (along the lines of the work she has done with the Saguaro cactus), produced a series of striking auto-timed nude photos of herself integrated the midst of forest, streams, and salmon carcasses, and produced this collection of dances:  

KimiEisele_Conversations with Alaska from Kimi Eisele on Vimeo.

Thanks to Kimi for all of the inspiring projects, and to the Rasmuson Foundation for making it happen. We're excited that 2016 Rasmuson Artist Resident Nikki Zielinski will be joining us here in just a couple weeks. -- Peter