RESIDENCY APPLICATION: PLAND, Practice Liberating Art through Necessary Dislocation

Be a Resident at PLAND!

Residency Overview and Application Form



PLAND, Practice Liberating Art through Necessary Dislocation, is an off-the-grid residency program that supports the development of experimental and research-based projects in the context of the Taos mesa. PLAND finds its inspiration in a legacy of pioneers, entrepreneurs, homesteaders, artists, and other counterculturalists who – through both radical and mundane activities – reclaim and reframe a land-based notion of the American Dream. While producing open-ended experimental projects that facilitate collaboration and hyper-local engagement, PLAND is a constantly evolving, art-informed rural outpost in the New Mexican high desert. Through project-based residencies and work parties, residents are encouraged to marry survival-based goals with big ideas and experimental methods. Without expectations about prescribed outcomes, PLAND privileges process over product. We believe that people that can do amazing things when supported and encouraged in new contexts and there is no context like that of the Taos mesa. Part alternative school, part laboratory, part homestead, part art studio, PLAND is an active solution for merging art into life.

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Who may apply:
If you are a worker, maker, thinker, or doer who brings self-awareness, experimental processes and creativity to what you do – and PLAND sparks some ideas for you – then you are eligible to apply for a residency.

What it means:
PLAND is a burgeoning program – an idea associated with a specific location and new forms of production. We believe that a place is made by living in it and we want you to help us make PLAND by being here, by living it. Through an active reinvestment in daily life and by collaborating with amazing people, we aim to not only cultivate PLAND but also to test new ways of being in the world. That said, we invite you to propose a project that will involve some level of collaboration with us and with the place. While we don’t expect you to be familiar with the Taos mesa in detail before you arrive, the most successful project will be site-responsive in that it considers localized geography, history, culture, language, architectural traditions or otherwise. We are interested in proposals that might problem-solve our water situation or result in a garden, but we’re equally as interested in pairing you with our neighbor Bob (who has woven homes out of willows) or facilitating a collaboration with the local community center. For us, building community is as important as building shelter.

Prior to your arrival, we’ll have on-going conversations about your residency at PLAND. We’ll let you know when we score some second-hand windows, how we managed to buy the chain saw, who we met that reminded us of you… you’ll basically become part of it all so that when you arrive you’re ready, you’re here, you’re home.

What to expect:
PLAND has only just begun! In 2009 we purchased 1.25 acres of high desert at a land auction. The land is raw – no electricity or water and the road is rough but short. Situated approximately 40 miles northwest of Taos, PLAND is a rural outpost on the edge of the ever-nearing grid. As we draft this call for proposals, the land sits under a new covering of snow and until the ground thaws and we’ve relocated our lives to the mesa, the building has yet to begin. Never fear! By the time you arrive, we’ll have an outhouse, a way to cook and clean, and some form of shelter in which to sleep. Be aware that this is not the residency during which you will make paintings or write novels. We do not have studio spaces nor is this residency about working in isolation. Although humble, rugged, and not without its plentiful share of hardship, we offer you the opportunity to get in touch with the basics. Water, shelter, fire, weather, dinner, blue, people, time and space – all of these elements become the daily luxuries in which you’re invited to indulge.

We provide:
- a compelling context
- localized access to neighbors, materials, possibilities
- loads of local secrets like where to get a shower, where to find wild asparagus, how to battle the heat
- opportunities to collaborate with locals and with us
- outings into town for laundry, cuisine, nightlife, internet, etc.
- outings into the wilds for foraging, hot springs, recreation, etc.
- (wo)man power! We will help produce and build your project. Yes, that means we’re working side-by-side, day-by-day
- a growing library of manuals, almanacs, maps, novels and children’s books
- the tools we have on hand
- the materials we’re able to gather
- shelter
- water
- first-aid kit
- collaboratively cooked dinners
- conversation
- presentation of your work on our website
- a trickle of fascinated and fascinating visitors, all willing to help out
- transportation to Texas for a report to our funders, the Idea Fund
- contextualization and amplification of your project to a broad audience
- modest stipend for materials, travel, tequila, whatever

You provide:
- transportation to Taos
- food
- basic survival stuff (canteen, flashlight, work shoes, etc.)
- ideas and inspiration
- a good attitude
- flexibility regarding your proposal – everything might change once you arrive!
- a continuous 2-4 week commitment to being at PLAND
- means of documenting your work
- a waiver stating that you come to PLAND at your own risk

Application process:
First let us state that although we can only choose one resident, we hope to receive a lot of proposals so as to assess the broad appeal of PLAND. Based on your proposals, we’ll know who is interested in this place and why and, henceforth, how to plan our future around a set of collective interests.

By May 10:
Email completed application form, with additional pages and supporting materials as necessary, to

2) Send $15 application fee/gesture of support:

via PayPal:
click on the “Donate” button at the top right-hand side of this webpage


via postal mail: please note that this is a P.O. Box, so please do not send large packages
Nina Elder/PLAND
423 State Road 150
El Prado, NM

By May 31:
We will contact you to let you know if you should start packing.

Why an application fee?
Part of the experiment of PLAND is about resource sharing. While we could make excuses about administration costs, we prefer to think of the application fee as a statement of support. Your fees will go directly into building PLAND, both physically and conceptually and will signal that you believe in what we’re doing. We’ll put your money towards something we really need – like firewood or a cistern or a generator or a chain saw – and we’ll list you as a supporter on our website.

Another part of the PLAND agenda is to forge alternative and hybrid economies, so know that we’re open to some non-monetary methods of support. If you prefer an alternative, simply choose something that you think we’ll need, or check our website Wish List, and send it to our physical mailing address. Be sure to specify your method of contribution in the email application form.

Got questions? We’re sure you do! Just ask ‘em at

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