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November 16th, 2012

A personal note from our Director

Dear Friends,  

I recently completed my first full year as Saltonstall’s director. I had the great pleasure to meet and get to know 20 extraordinary fellowship recipients this summer and an equal number of residency alumni who took advantage of our subsidized rates in the off-season for personal retreats. 

Many local artists and writers also came for intensive retreats, scheduled around busy lives with full-time jobs and children at home. Eleanor Henderson and Catherine Taylor (both on the writing faculty at Ithaca College), Bob Proehl (fiction writer and manager at Buffalo Street Books), and Keith Millman (photographer and associate professor at Tompkins Cortland Community College) all spent time here this year focusing on their craft.

I have been humbled by the effect this place has on the lives of those striving to make a living as creative individuals. I come to this gorgeous office every day knowing what we do matters – that we make a difference. (Please scroll down to read just a portion of the emails I receive.)

Connie Saltonstall’s gift was an act of conviction – her conviction (and ours) – that artists and writers need and deserve our support. Nothing is more valuable to an artist than the gifts of time and space. This is what we provide. We support the creation of art and literature at its source. 

But we need your help. We can no longer depend on Connie’s founding gift as our sole source of income. It is simply not sustainable. Our aging facilities need renovation and continuous upkeep. We know we can do more to serve artists and writers, both throughout the State and here in our local community with increased and innovative programming.

With a newly energized board we are beginning a strategic planning process for the first time in our history to ensure that we will remain an active, vital organization for future generations of artists and writers. This is an exciting time at Saltonstall. Won’t you join us?  

Your gift – in any amount – is deeply appreciated.

Donate online to the Saltonstall Foundation for the Arts

With thanks,

Lesley Williamson 

Levels of Giving:

Friend of Saltonstall: up to $35
Artist's Circle: up to $100
Writer's Circle: up to $500
Patron's Circle: up to $2,500
Benefactor's Circle: up to $10,000
Connie's Circle: $10,000+

In their own words:

“I enjoyed a perfect storm at Saltonstall this past September. It’s the convergence of so many ideal circumstances: hours of solitude in a spacious studio; exceptional food; a gracious and remarkable group of fellow artists; and a real sense of caring that makes Saltonstall feel like home—without the distractions.  I’ve gotten good work done elsewhere, but Saltonstall is unique.”  – Jonathan Blunk, poet/biographer (Crompond) 

“Attached is a picture I took one night while I was at the colony. The big "star" by the cabin is Venus. You should know I had an incredibly productive 3 days and accomplished so much.” – Keith Millman, photographer (Ithaca)

“The gift of time and space here at Saltonstall has recharged me as an image-maker.” – Christine Shank, photographer (Rochester) 

“I was able to create a discipline for myself that I am hard pressed to do at home. Without family and work distractions, I created a large body of work both plein air and studio time, in watercolors and oil.” – Melanie Kozol, painter (Brooklyn)

“I still don't know how I came to receive such a gift as this. Like other residencies, Saltonstall offers open time to set into your own creative pace... But unique to Saltonstall is an especial quiet and spaciousness. The small and devoted staff made it possible for us to work, eat, sleep, and relax as if there was absolutely nothing else the world could ask of us.” – Annie Jacobs, poet (Gardiner) 

“I just wanted to say thank you for the opportunity to have spent 3 nights and 3 days at Saltonstall! I broke the ice with my art, and hopefully now can get back into a disciplined routine---now that I know I can have fun again doing it!” – Paula Davis, visual artist (Ithaca)