Winter Residency FAQ

2021 Penland Winter Residencies: Frequently Asked Questions

Applying and Making Plans

How long is a winter residency?

Winter residencies are either 2 or 4 weeks for all studios.

When is the application due?

All applications are due by 11:59 PM EST on Monday, August 16, 2021. There is a $30 non-refundable application fee paid through SlideRoom when you submit your application.  If this represents a barrier to submitting an application, please email to discuss a reduced application fee. 

When will I be notified of my application’s status?

Penland will notify all applicants by October 1, 2021.

How do collaborators or couples apply to participate in the residency?

Collaborators must submit individual applications, but may choose to share studio/living space. Applications must contain a joint proposal of the work they intend to do while in residence. The acceptance of one collaborator does NOT guarantee the acceptance of the other.

Non-collaborating couples who wish to be in residence together must submit individual applications. Upon acceptance, they may request concurrent residency dates and choose whether or not to share studio/living space. No other provisions are made for partners. The acceptance of one partner does NOT guarantee the acceptance of the other.

How do I estimate my costs for the residency? Note: payments are due November 15, 2021

Sample Costs for a 2-week resident in the clay studio:

  • $30 non-refundable application fee
  • $500, clay studio access for 2 weeks
  • $250, double room with common bath for 2 weeks
  • = $780 (plus extra $ for studio supplies purchased in the studio or at home and travel expenses.)

Sample Costs for a 4-week resident in the wood studio:

  • $30 non-refundable application fee
  • $1000, wood studio access for 4 weeks
  • $600, double/bath shared with roommate for 4 weeks
  • = $1630 (plus extra $ for studio supplies purchased in the studio or at home and travel expenses.)

Sample Costs for a 2-week resident in the glass studio’s hot shop:

  • $30 non-refundable application fee
  • $1500, hot shop access for 2 weeks
  • $250, winter resident’s double room with common bath for 2 weeks
  • $250, resident assistant’s double room with common bath for 2 weeks
  • = $2030 (plus $ for extra studio supplies and travel expenses.)

How many fellowships are available and what expenses do they cover?

Penland now offers several merit-based fellowships which remove the residency fee for a two-week residency. Available fellowships are limited but we hope to offer about 40 individual fellowships in 2022. Preference will be given to first-time applicants who reinforce Penland’s commitment to creating a diverse cohort and residency experience, but anyone is eligible to request funding.

What happens if my arrival is delayed due to weather?

Penland rarely closes its campus due to inclement weather but on occasion this can happen. Should this result and cause a delay to the start of your residency, you will receive a prorated refund for the days that Penland’s campus is closed due to weather.

How do I get to Penland?

Driving: For driving directions, click the link below.

Directions and Map

Please note that Asheville is the closest place to pick up or drop off a rental car.

Flying: You are responsible for arranging your own transportation to Penland. The Asheville Airport is the closest airport to Penland and is about 1 hour and 20 minutes away. There are multiple shuttle companies that will transport you from the airport to Penland. These are a few that we use on a regular basis:

Mitchell County Transportation
(828) 688-4715

Harry Siegel (Asheville Airport Shuttle)

William (Billy) Paulk (Pegasus Airport Limousine)

Joe Tandy (Grandy Co. Transportation)

You can find a more complete list on the airport website:

If you fly into Charlotte, please be aware that it is 2½ hours from Penland, and it will be much more difficult to arrange ground transportation.

Staying at Penland

What are the housing facilities like and what basic amenities are provided?

Housing varies from double rooms with a common bathroom to single private rooms with a private bathroom. You can decide which level suits your preference and request this on your application. All rooms are simple; linens, blankets, and towels are provided. If you are driving and have extra room, we encourage you to bring an additional blanket of your own.

What common facilities do the resident artists share?

All studios and kitchens are communal. Some housing and bathrooms are shared; this depends on the housing you choose when applying.

What do residents do about meals? Are there dining facilities?

Our dining hall is closed in the winter. Winter residents are responsible for their own meals. Each resident is assigned to a shared kitchen; each kitchen is equipped with basic cooking equipment, tableware, and cleaning supplies. Kitchen areas are communal and residents are responsible for kitchen clean up after each use. Please note that your kitchen assignment may not be in the same building as your housing.

The Penland Coffee House is open daily and sells drinks, snacks, and some simple meals.

If I don’t have transportation during the residency, how will I get to local stores for food and supplies?

Spruce Pine is the closest town and only 10 minutes away from Penland. We have a van that will take residents to and from the local grocery store and to WalMart once a week. You may also ask your shuttle driver (if you are flying into Asheville) to stop at Ingles Market in Burnsville on your way to Penland from the airport. The Asheville shuttle drives directly past it on the way to Penland.

Does Penland provide laundry facilities?

There are no laundry facilities on campus for Winter Residents. There is a laundromat in Spruce Pine for those who need to do laundry during their residency and the weekly van from Penland can take you there.

Working in the Studio

How many resident artists will be in the studio at one time?

There will be a limited number of artists per studio, and each studio is a little different (in general there will be 5-7 residents per studio, and a few more in our clay studios). Expect enough people to provide conversation and creative camaraderie, but not so many that focused time in the studio is compromised.

Is there storage in the studio?

There are individual work stations and storage for residents in every studio.

Is the School Store open during the winter?

Our School Store will be open from 10 am-4 pm, Monday through Friday.

Will there be someone in the studio to assist with the equipment?

This is an independent residency, so you must be comfortable with the equipment you will need for your project. Studio assistants and studio coordinators are available in the studios to orient residents and offer troubleshooting advice from time to time. Please note: they are not instructors; we expect winter residents to be able and willing to work independently.

Will there be an assistant in the Hot Shop?

Any resident applying to work in the hot shop must bring their own assistant. There are no additional fees for your assistant unless they require housing. There will be a studio assistant and coordinator to help orient residents in the studio and to offer troubleshooting advice from time to time, but they are not there to assist you in making your work. When you apply, you will be prompted to provide your assistant’s contact information. If they require housing you will need to provide their date of birth and housing preference.

How do I find out what equipment and supplies are available in the studios?

A Studio Coordinator will email you a list of equipment and supplies available in the studio once you have been accepted. You can find a list of equipment on our website:

About Penland Studios 


What processes can each studio support?

Books: all book structures, leather working, foil stamping, gilding, artist’s books

Clay (Lower): sculpture, hand building, mold making, slip casting; firing: electric kilns

Clay (Upper): wheel throwing, hand building; firing: electric, gas reduction, salt, soda, raku, wood  (We try to schedule residents interested in wood firing during the same session so they can fire together.)

Drawing & Painting: oil, acrylic, encaustic painting* and watercolor painting; drawing, collage; and mixed media; small to large scale  (*We try to schedule residents interested in encaustic painting during the same session for safety and ventilation reasons.)

Glass: general glassblowing/sculpting, hot casting, hot blow-molds, limited-run production blowing; fusing, slumping, casting, lost wax casting; general flameworking in both borosilicate and soft glass

Iron: various hot forging and sheet forming processes, blacksmithing, all welding processes, sheet metal fabrication

Letterpress: typesetting (wood and metal type), photopolymer, pressure prints, engraving/lino

Metals (Lower): raising, fabrication, soldering, die forming, acid etching

Metals (Upper): casting, enameling, fabrication, soldering, die forming

Papermaking: sheet forming (inclusions, watermarking, blowouts), sculptural paper, pulp casting

Photography: digital photography, large format printing, studio lighting, black and white darkroom, most alternative processes

Printmaking: lithography (stone/plate), copper etching with ferric, silkscreen, relief, monoprinting

Textiles (Lower): weaving, tapestry, spinning, dyeing, basketry, embroidery, knitting/crocheting, hand & machine sewing

Textiles (Upper): natural, acid and MX dyeing; all surface design techniques including silkscreen printing, shibori, and marbling; leather working, hat making, sewing and construction, quilting, felting

Wood: traditional/nontraditional furniture making, wood turning, carving, marquetry, CNC, steam bending, stack lamination, various surface treatments and finishing techniques, sculpture