Karelian art residence (AiR Karelia)

8-(8142) 76-14-41


Karelian art residence (AiR Karelia) provides time and space for the artists to live and work in Petrozavodsk, Sortavala and Kostomuksha National Reserve (Russia). Karelian art residence started its work in 2015 and since then welcomed in Petrozavodsk about 60 artists from all over the world. The programme focused mainly on contemporary art, but is also open to art professionals from other disciplines.
In 2018 in cooperation with a key partner Tourist Information Center of the Republic of Karelia, Kostomuksha Nature Reserve, Sortavala sociocultural and youth center and KareliaExpert Ltd. has launched the project “Karelian Art Residency Network and Art Tourism” in the frame of the Karelia CBC programme.
Karelian art residence network includes art residencies in Petrozavodsk, Sortavala and Kostomuksha nature reserve. Each of them has its own thematic particularity and concept frame.

Art residence “Petrozavodsk”.

Stand-alone two-storeyed building of 1775 year built (cultural heritage object) in the historical part of the city, in the centre of Petrozavodsk (Lenin square, 2A).

Concept: art residence “Petrozavodsk” focuses on support of artists and creative groups, their interests aim at design, forecasting and visualization of new types and forms of alternative worlds and realities, consideration of time role in contexts of utopian images.

Petrozavodsk art residence is a  stand-alone old building in the city center. The building itself is a metaphor of an utopian shelter for creators – in which dreams, fantasies about new worlds and spaces may begin to acquire figurative contours and stimulate appearance of new creative products in the format of cinema, animation, narrative texts, computer games, virtual worlds or other hybrid variants of creative activity

Technical capacity: Stand-alone two-storeyed building with the floor-space of 104 sq. m. Working rooms like photo-video studio, operator editing studio, and space for sound record are on the ground floor. Living rooms for 2-3 people and a sitting room are on the first floor. Toilet, shower, kitchen and store room are in the basement.

Except for the main residence located in the historical building and managed by the art residence, there is an additional living premises of 35 sq. m. floor-space on the ground floor of the multistoreyed dormitory, in the centre of the city (Anokhin str., 1). It has a living room, a kitchen equipped with necessary equipment and utensil, shower room and a toilet.

Petrozavodsk is a small European-like city only in 300 km from the border with Finland and St. Petersburg. Due to its location, history and current state, it offers a real glance into regional Russian life, being an alternative to big capitals. At the same time, it has lively local art community – the city itself is young and open to different artistic projects and interventions.

Art residence “Sortavala”.

Residence is located in the historical center of Sortavala, in the building that refers to architectural monuments (Karelskaya st., 22). Therein resides the “Social and cultural youth center“ – the main place of cultural events of the town, which hosts more than 100 events a year. Library, music school, art school with the ceramic workshop and etching press, regional museum are at the walking distance thereof.

Concept: art residence “Sortavala” is designed first of all for artists interested in  local area study and new local contexts. This art residence positions itself as a space for milti discipline activities, it opens interactions capacities in research in different art fields through artistic methods (artists, photographers, graphic artists) and comprehensive projects through the practice of “cultural engagement” (performance, theater, dance, Open air, site specific art, etc.)

Technical capacity: Art residence premises has 40 sq. m. floor space, including living room for two persons, working zone, a kitchen and toilet. Art residence has a separate entrance from the courtyard, not far from the Ladoga lake shore.

Art residence “Kostomuksha” .

Art residence locates in Kostomukshsky nature reserve – the natural protected area that is in the North west Russia, close to the boarder with Finland. Distance from Kostomuksha to the art – residence is 19 km by car on the earth-road and 3.5 km  on foot.  There is a crossing over the river Kamennaya by boat on the way.

Concept: hybrid arts focused on observation and study of processes running in wild nature.

Participants for the art residence might be:

· artists and scientists working with science art, and environmental issues in their widest variety (living environment, eco-systems etc.);

· painters, writers, composers making training and educational programs, referred to living nature;

· photo, video, cinema artists directly tied to science, educational programs and to special topics or themes related to images of nature;

· artists collecting materials for their work and preferring lonely creative life.

Technical capacity: Art residence “Kostomuksha” provides the well equipped house for work and live, that stays in the pine white non-vascular plants (white moss) forest, on the bank of a small lake. Its floor space is 113 sq. m. including living room for two persons (two couples), a kitchen,  a small veranda and a workshop (sun-lounge) perfectly suites to work with oils and paints and graphic materials. There is a gas stove in the kitchen.  The house is equipped with electricity, two stoves (heated with wood).  Bio-toilet and sauna are near the house, large area overlooking the lake, wood shed.  Mandatory condition: guiding from the office to the residence and periodical visiting of the nature reserve guide (reserved separate house in  1 km form the residence house), and obligatory fulfillment of strict safety and ecological rules relevant to the reserve area.
Resident should be ready to participate in cultural and educational activities for local  people.

Best works/projects of art residents of 2019/2020 years will be displayed in the final exhibition of Karelian art residences.

Karelian art residence network will not finance residents expenditure on travel, meals, consumables, passport and visa fees. Arrangement of required trips within staying in Karelia is subject to individual negotiations with every art residents and depending on the capabilities of a particular art residence.

Upon the first season end of functioning KARN in October 2020, the final exhibition is planned to be arranged, wherein will be exhibited art activities of Karelian art residencies. Their curators will therefore select the works of those art residents whose projects have the brightest and most convincing reflection of the thematic “face” (outlook) of each of three art residences.


Varvara Feklistova, residency coordinator


e-mail: manager@museums.karelia.ru; airkarelia@yandex.ru

Detailed information about the contest is published in social networks

“Vkontakte” https://vk.com/karatproject_ka3002  https://vk.com/karelianartresidence

and “Facebook” https://www.facebook.com/karat3002/ https://www.facebook.com/KarelianArtResidence/

OPEN CALL for 2020 has complited


Residency Programme since: 2015
Organisation founded in: please choose
What type of organisation are you?:
  • Part of a Governmental Institution
Working Languages:
  • English
  • Russian
Presentation of artists’ work: Arranged on a case-by-case basis
Duration of residency:
  • Months: 1 – 3
Number of studios: 3
Number of artists in residence at one time: 5
Studio type and size: Live/work studio
Accommodation type:
Private Room
Private Apartment
Shared Room
Which disciplines does your residency cater to?:
  • Visual Art
  • Dance
  • Theatre
  • Printmaking
  • Performing Arts
  • Textile Art
  • Music
  • Literature
  • New Media
  • Animations
  • Film-making
  • Architecture
  • Photography
What practical facilities does your residency offer to artists?:
  • Private accommodation
  • Shared accommodation
  • Shared studio / workplace
  • Kitchen
  • Internet
Is your residency wheelchair accessible?: No
Companions Allowed:
  • Children
  • Partners
  • Application process: Open call
    Do you charge an application fee for your residency?: No
    Do you provide the residents with any funds associated with the residency? (e.g. stipend, fellowship, production allowance): No
    Expenses paid by the artist:
    • Travel
    • Food
    • Supplies
    Are artists expected to do one of the following during their residency stay?:
    • Exhibition
    • Public talk
    • Workshop
    • Teaching
    • Publication
    Other activities happening at the space:
    • Workshops
    • Presentation
    • Films
    • Exhibition
    Selection process: By curator
    Setting: Urban
    Nearest Airport: St.Peterburg, Petrozavodsk
    Nearest Train Station: Petrozavodsk, Sortavala, Kostomursha
    How to reach by plane: to St.Peterburg , Moscow, Petrozavodsk
    How to reach by train: St.Peterburg Moscow Finland Sortavala, Kostomuksha, Petrozavodsk
    How to reach by car: St.Peterburg Moscow Finland Sortavala, Kostomuksha Petrozavodsk
    Street & Number: Karl Marx Avenue, 14
    Postal Code: 185035
    City: Petrozavodsk
    Country long: Russia
    Karl Marx Avenue, 14
    Petrozavodsk 185035 RUS
    Get directions