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An artist residency humbled by the sea

adriftproject gets its wind from a practice born thousands of years ago: transiting the sea to spread goods, ideas, and cultures.  As a sailing artist residency, that transience is recognized in situ as an immense and impactful part of the human experience.  It seemed a logical conclusion that exploring these ideas–and many others–would be well served among the waves.


The vessel ‘Hawa’ can typically host two artists in residence per one to two month session; more are possible depending on the situation.  Daily life when not underway consists of studio time in the onboard facilities, or even onshore locations, and regular dialogue such as critiques, artist visits, and technical demos relevant to the participating artists.  Each resident is encouraged to produce a work or body of work while also contributing to the safety and maintenance of the vessel and crew.  The voyage culminates at a partner gallery or institution at the terminal destination where we exhibit the work created en-route.  


As a platform for artistic exploration, the residency harvests the sea in many ways as humanity has for millennia, especially as a source of inspiration.  We also give back to the sea, as a source of inspiration for others in terms of sustainability and alternative thinking to how we interact with the planet.  By being artists, working with other like-minded groups, and leaving a clean wake as much as possible, adriftproject hopes to be a small part of humanity’s drive towards a more beneficial collective mindset.


Michael Fadel was born in Lebanon to a Lebanese father and American mother and now sails the east coast making art on the boat.  He taught as an adjunct instructor at the University of Arizona and at Southwest University of Visual Arts alongside his practice as an artist. Fadel earned a BFA from Winthrop University and a MFA from the University of Arizona—both in sculpture and received many distinctions, including the Centennial Award, the Edward Francis Dunn Scholarship, and is a Medici Scholar.


Fadel’s technical skills have been employed in Dubai for Ayyam Gallery and the 55th Venice Biennale as fabricator for artist Sama Alshaibi. His artwork has been exhibited in several cities in the USA—from New York to San Francisco—as well as the ISEA Conference in Dubai and at the Scottsdale MoCA in Phoenix, AZ.  Conceptually he examines fluidity in reference to ego-oriented objects using fabricated, analog, machines comprised primarily of wood and steel.  In this manipulation of fluid and form, he seeks to further interpret a growing interest in the sea and its relation to personal and human discourse.

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