Back to Basics
Intensive residency program

Ken Steen
Glastonbury, Connecticut, USA

Music Composition, Sound Art & Video


"Listen and look with care, always, so those small details that may otherwise go unnoticed do not escape your attention."

Ken Steen's music sound and video art is recognized internationally for its authentic vitality, remarkable range and distinctive personal vision. Whether acoustic, electronic or some multimedia combination, his work has often been characterized as seductively gorgeous, featuring sumptuous textures of gradual yet unpredictable evolution. Since 2010 his work in various forms has enjoyed more than 150 performances or installations on 5 continents: from Mumbai to Tripoli, Stockholm, Buenos Aires, Ljubljana, Reykjavík, and New York City.

Steen is Professor of Composition and Music Theory, and director of Studio D (the electronic sound/noise/music studio) at the University of Hartford’s Hartt School, in West Hartford, Connecticut USA.

Linda Loh
Melbourne, Australia

Visual Art, new media, video, painting


Linda captures incidents of fleeting colour, light or reflection, then submits them to an iterative process of translation, using a fusion of digital, photographic and painterly procedures. She also makes minimal installations with shiny objects, and paintings with electronic devices or liquid pigments. These in turn could be source material for further pieces. Works may include digital files to be shared and viewed online, digital pigment prints - small or huge, on paper or fabric - screen based moving image works and projection installations. Deploying abstraction, she plays with perceptual experience, and ponders the aesthetic dichotomies of works arising from quiet, light-based phenomena, alternating with those that embrace vivid colour and strong forms. Increasingly, she is interested in methods and opportunities to present her work in the intangible online space, beyond the boundaries imposed by the physical, political, and commercial world. Such an approach, as yet undeveloped and experimental, aligns with her interest in the ephemeral elusive nature of experience and perception, and indeed mind itself.

Simon Taylor
Cape Town, South Africa

Video, photography, documentary


"Multi disciplinary, looking for new collaborations and processes"

Simon’s approach to art moves playfully between what is real and constructed without letting go of authenticity. Story and character narratives, whether true or imaginary, are at the centre of his work. His style is raw, close and real, often drawing on encounters with natural elements. He has licensed a creative documentary feature film to the BBC and has been engaged by a range of clients including Al Jazeera, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart and Fox among other international broadcasters as well as a range of non broadcast clients such as London Business School, The University of Cape Town and the Heinrich Boll Foundation to create media. A member of Berlinale talent campus his work his work has shown in festivals and exhibitions internationally, recently a solo exhibition with the Association for Visual Arts Gallery followed by a video art instillation. Interested in the creative processes that collaborations provide he has been drawn to Arteles and to find artists, spaces and institutions to create new work with.

Anja Schütz
Turner Falls, Massachusetts, USA



For the past several years I've been fascinated by the human search for meaning. Not actively participating in any religion myself, I explore connecting points in a shared humanity and the line that exists between us and other, unseen worlds.

Various portrait projects seek to discover a common thread among groups of people by inviting subjects to pose for situations which evoke within them tenderness, defiance, revisiting of traumas, celebrating joy, and so on–-in short, experiences which define us individually and collectively within each person’s experience of the same event. In each of these experiences, whether they are light-hearted or more difficult, I seek a stillness that distills all of us to the same point of being.

This same stillness is something I seek in my landscape and still-life work. Is it possible to create a body of work that invites us all to a similar contemplation?
Nora Sørena Casey
New York, USA



"Creating theater that can only live fully in the imagination."

Nora Sørena Casey loves to create vivid theatrical worlds that break free of reality. This emphasis on imagination takes many forms, including site-specific works, musicals, and plays that seamlessly move across time and space. From plays like "False Stars," a collaboratively-created reclaiming of the family drama, to experimental new musicals like "Waiting," Nora blends humor and lyrical language to explore sex, love, identity and power in contemporary America.

Nora plays include "Take the Car" (Williamstown Theatre Festival, Brooklyn College), "Resistance Training" (Women-In-Theatre Festival), "Waiting" (Columbia Stages), "Dreams of Malinche" (Everyday Inferno), and "Not Afraid" (PowerOut). Her play "False Stars," premiered at the Corkscrew Festival in a “fast-paced, heartfelt and precise” (Stagebuddy) production that was “packed with young talent” (New York Times).
Sydney Southam
Vancouver, Canada

Film, performance, ceramics


Sydney Southam is a visual artist, filmmaker, performance artist, and professional pole dancer. She often works with archival 16mm film, exploring themes of nostalgia, death, memory, and identity. Her current work explores the backstage and domestic lives of exotic dancers and how their private and professional lives are defined through ideas of feminism, objectification, power, and love. Sydney is one of the founding members of Vancouver-based Iris Film Collective, and the curator of the potluck dinner and artist talk series Special Sunday Supper. Her films and artwork have shown across Canada, Europe and Asia, at venues such as MOCA Taipei, Gabriel Rolt Galerie (Amsterdam), Athens International Film and Video Festival, Antimatter Media Art Festival, Aesthetica Short Film Festival, Access Gallery, Emmedia Gallery, Yinka Shonibare Guest Projects, Vivo Media Arts Centre, Western Front, and the Haida Heritage Centre. She graduated from Central Saint Martins with a BA Fine Art First Class Honours in 2011 and from the University of Toronto with a BA in English, Philosophy and Cinema Studies in 2007.
Evan James
New York, USA

Fiction, Nonfiction

Evan James writes fiction and essays. His first novel, Cheer Up, Mr. Widdicombe, will be published by Atria Books in the US in 2019, as will a collection of personal essays. Evan has a particular interest in comedic forms: Cheer Up, Mr. Widdicombe, which is set on an island in the Pacific Northwest where he grew up, draws inspiration from the novels of the English humorist P.G. Wodehouse. He also has an interest in travel writing, and has written personal essays about traveling in New Zealand, Indonesia, the Philippines, and the Balkans. His work has appeared in Oxford American, the New York Times, the New York Observer, Ninth Letter, and elsewhere. His essay "Lovers' Theme" was awarded the 2016 Iowa Review Award in Nonfiction. He has an MFA from the Iowa Writers' Workshop, and has received fellowships from Yaddo, Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, Lambda Literary, and the Elizabeth Kostova Foundation.
Tamara Lazaroff
Brisbane, Australia

Fiction & Creative Non-Fiction


I'm an emerging writer of fiction & creative non-fiction based in Brisbane, Australia. Over 25 of my short stories and personal essays have been published, broadcast and performed in Australia, the UK and New Zealand. Some have won, been highly commended or been longlisted for awards, including the Biennial Literary Award, the Elizabeth Jolley Short Story Prize and the Fish Short Story Prize. Recently, I completed my first short story collection, 'In My Father's Village & Other Stories', and am actively seeking to find the right home for them. At Arteles, I am interested in exploring what I can do with the lyric essay form.
Jacky Cheng
Western Australia

Sculpture, fibre, printmaking


"Making and creating to remember"

Jacky Cheng was born in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. In 2003, she received her Bachelor of Architecture (Hons 1) from University of New South Wales, Sydney and has since put architecture on hold and pursued her love for ‘creating and making’ in smaller scales. Jacky is a practicing artist, an educator as well as a leader in the Vocational Education and Training sector in Australia.

Jacky works across several mediums incorporating her philosophy of 'slow art' - a visual participatory, most notably in bas-relief paper sculpture. Her introduction into paper manipulation is an amalgamation of cultural practices as a child as well as her curiosity in paper architecture during her tertiary education years. Her recent experimentation in fibre, stitching and weaving opened an array of processes for future body of works.

Her multiple award winning manual hand-cut paper enchantment has since been featured in ABC Kimberley Projects - 'The Paper Cutter', ABC Arts - ‘How art changed my life’ as well as participated in numerous curated art exhibitions, art awards, collaborative works, art feeds and articles locally and internationally.

Her teaching accolades includes both state and national awards in Best Trainer/Teacher of the Year in Vocational Education and Training (VET) sector bestowed by the prestigious Australia Training Awards as well as a finalist for the Curtin University Teaching Excellence Award.

Today, Jacky continues to practice and teach in Northwest of Western Australia where she has lived and worked since 2006.
Ilián González
Mexico city, Mexico

video, photography, installation


"Visual arts"

Through my career I have used and produced different media; film and theater in the beginning, and later video, photography and installation. These tools have given me a space to convey questions about the individual and his environment. I consider the acts of mixing, cutting and pasting as a mode to create meshes that re arrange and vitalize habits of perceiving and reflecting upon our paradigms. My work questions how the subject and its relations can be looked at from within its social context. Through connections that come from absolute concepts such as nature, time and geometry, I try to encourage contemplation; a personal one arising from within an individual´s psyche, as well as one that links with the sensible world outside, considering that knowledge and imagination both feed from a source which is, at the same time, both near and hard to approach.
Anna Rhodes
Edinburgh, UK

Landscape architecture


Anna Rhodes is a Landscape Architect. Her work explores space activated by people and with an investigative research approach she demonstrates sensitivity in thought process and design. Anna practices design as social art with dialogue and in collaboration with others. She strives for a balance between engagement with communities and considered, beautiful design.

In recent years Anna's work has been to investigate ways to improve peoples perceptiveness and engagement in designed landscapes. By designing and prototyping ideas in the form of installations she hopes to explore movement as a catalyst to generate experience.

Anna holds an MLA (Masters in Landscape Architecture) from the University of Edinburgh and an BA(Hons) in Painting and Printmaking from Glasgow School of Art. She is currently practicing as a Chartered Landscape Architect and Tutor of Landscape Architecture at the University of Edinburgh.
Blythe Cheung
Hong Kong

Visual Arts


Collect remnants of the ever-changing world, distil overlooked mystery and wonder among seemingly mundane and repetitive happenings into carries of their own kind. These debris, magic that radiates beauty, define the finest moments and so makes them worthy.

My multi-disciplinary practice mainly consists of drawings/ writing/ installation/ performance/ sound. Each component works together like notes of a chord, and contributes a unique tone to the composition. Through different passageways, I find the delicate balance to enrich and amplify meanings, bridges new points of entry to a collective experience that resonates within and beyond. In a place where we see the extraordinary in ordinary, we perhaps catch a glimpse of eternity.
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