The purpose of The Whirlybird Compound Artist in Residency of Acadiana, run by Christy Leichty and Jim Phillips, is to enhance the creative process of artists through cultural immersion. Christy & Jim provide 6 artist in residence accommodations in a secluded and inspiring setting in South Louisiana, complete with a residence, studio spaces, gallery, performance spaces, kitchen, laundry and basic amenities, allowing artists to fully immerse themselves in the unique cultural experiences and traditions of the region.
Artists are responsible for their own food and transportation, Christy & Jim offer weekly shopping trips and spontaneous cultural and artistic events. Artists are expected to follow the The Whirlybird Compound rules, which are simple: no pets, no non-working partners, no indoor smoking, and no alterations to the property. Christy & Jim offer a unique opportunity for paying it forward they call Community Lagniappe (in Cajun and Creole culture, a small gift given or obtained by way of good measure) – the artists are expected to contribute to the community through a project, such as a reading, a workshop, a recital/gig/jam or an art show. Also, the artists are responsible to provide feedback at the end of their residency.
Oh yes! “What,” you ask, “is a Whirlybird”? Well, you know how sports teams have mascots, we have our own mascot that abides in the honky tonk. Way back in the 50’s it used to sit outside the Piggly Wiggly grocery store, waiting to take children on a thrilling ride. The Whirlybird is loved by all…
Christy and Jim’s vision is straightforward and positive and engaging: give writers, musicians and visual artists a quiet, beautiful spot in a culturally and environmentally rich place to create or enhance their works, and awe-inspiring things will certainly happen.
Acadiana, historically French Louisiana and now home of The Whirlybird Compound Artist in Residency program, is a unique and vibrant region that offers a rich cultural experience for artists. Having an artist residency in this exotic region provides a great opportunity for artists to immerse themselves in a vibrant local culture, take part in its history, and explore its beautiful landscapes. South Louisiana has a rich history of folk, Cajun, and Creole music, which is dear to Christy & Jim’s heart. The region is also known for its incredible food and diverse wildlife. Most notably, since this is an artist in residence program, the region is home to a thriving arts community, with many artists, galleries, and museums showcasing a variety of works. Artists who take part in a residency at The Whirlybird Compound can take advantage of the rich culture and natural beauty, as well as the opportunity to connect with other artists and participate in and contribute to the local arts scene.