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Aerialist/Stilt-walker/Performer and Body Painter

January 2022

Nicole Hays spent the month of January 2022 in her first residency with numerous personal and creative goals. She mentioned that she really wanted a break from the 'doom-scrolling' and even gave herself a list of books - to read weekly (see below). She drove up from Florida where she is based as an entertainer and performer specializing in choreography, singing/dancing, and carnival-esque aeralist acts and stilt-walking. She is most known for being cast on 'Skin Wars' and is a renowned body painter. See more of Nicole's professional body painting work on her portfolio site where she actually also blogs about her residency experience.

A guided forest therapy walk with Val who is certified by ANTP is complimentary for those in residency longer than 2 weeks. There can be many inspirational aspects of nature for a performer from shapes and textures to composition. Nicole was on site during a wonderful snow storm that ended up being a bit too heavy for the bamboo grove. These experiences are once in a lifetime and Nicole really embraced the season. She even was able to get in a few days of practicing a new routine on her aerialist rig that she adeptly packed in her vehicle for the road trip. She shared that even though it was cold that it was a worthwhile experience. She set up the rig in the skyview spot above the river with lovely views far away from the outside world.

With her personal goals in mind, she found the quiet space perfect to nurture her journaling and the book a week goal. These are the titles she brought with her:

One of the things Nicole mentioned in her application was how excited she was to spend time with cats because her partner is allergic. Although cats are not technically allowed in private rooms, Nicole adores cats too much and allowed them to spend time with her in the ensuite option in the Camphaus which is like a cat cafe. She also made excellent use of the pine room studio space located in the Lemon Lodge which features furniture on casters to clear the floor for those wanting that type of interior space.

Her choreography project went from the outside aeralist work to inside where she developed a routine using a translucent box that she also adeptly packed in her vehicle for the road trip. The pine room gave her the privacy needed and the distance from the personal nest of her private quarters to be able to create a rhythm of daily practice.

We often feel that winter hibernation is inevitable, yet beneficial. Taking cues from the natural world, we know that trees for example are resting and storing their energy for the spring ahead. January is an off-season for a performer like Nicole who had experienced a big holiday season not to mention we are still experiencing Covid at this time so it was a good hide-out place from Florida.

Do you have a professional and fine art practice that you are balancing? Could you use some focus time to put the fine art work first with complete attention? Can you use your off-season for a personal and creative hibernation?

If so, what would you create? Apply today.

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