Good news from VCCA (Virginia Center for the Creative Arts)

I’ve just been accepted for a residency at VCCA! Last year when I applied, I was wait-listed.  Then, when Sheila Pleasants at VCCA called to invite me to come during either of two sudden cancellation times, I couldn’t accept because I’d scheduled school jobs and travel during those weeks. No other cancellation times opened up for my available weeks during the fall period (October, 2009- January, 2010), so I needed to reapply. Happily, I  just found out that I’ve been offered a fellowship there for two weeks, mid-January, 2011.

Here’s a link to a page on the VCCA web site that describes the nature of the experience of being a Fellow there:

VCCA sent me a PDF press release which I’ve been able  to translate into text and have pasted below:


July 27, 2010

P. 434.946.7236

Lexie Boris
Communications Director

Virginia Center for the Creative Arts
154 San Angelo Drive
Amherst, Virginia 24521


Penny Harter awarded VCCA Fellowship
One of 25 Fellows in residence at a time
VCCA one of world’s most prestigious artist communities

Penny Harter Awarded Fellowship by the VCCA

(Amherst, VA)  Penny Harter of Mays Landing, NJ, has been awarded a fellowship by the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts (VCCA). The VCCA is located near Sweet Briar College in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains in rural Virginia. Penny Harter will be among the approximately 25 Fellows focusing on their own creative projects at this working retreat for visual artists, writers and composers.

A typical residency ranges from two weeks to two months. Each artist is provided with a comfortable private bedroom, a private studio and three prepared meals a day.  Beyond the breakfast hour and the dinner hour, there are no schedules or obligations.  This distraction-free atmosphere, as well as the energy that results from having some 25 visual artists, writers, and composers gathered in one place, enables artists to be highly productive.

Serving more than 350 artists a year (more than 4,000 since its inception), the VCCA is one of the nation’s largest year-round artists’ communities. VCCA Fellows have  received worldwide attention through publications, exhibitions, compositions, performances, and major awards and accolades, including MacArthur grants, Pulitzer Prizes, Guggenheim fellowships, National Endowment for the Arts awards, Rome  Prizes, Pollock-Krasner grants, National Book Awards, Broadway and Off-Broadway  productions, and Academy Award nominations.

VCCA has been a wellspring of music,  literature and the visual arts in the United States, providing residencies for artists from all disciplines during the most important and the least supported phase of their work: the creative phase. This is done by giving visual artists, writers, composers, performance artists, filmmakers, collaborating artists and those whose work crosses disciplines the crucial elements every artist needs: time and space to do their work.

A nonprofit organization founded in 1971, the VCCA is supported in large part by grants and private donations.


About penhart

I am a poet and writer, published widely in journals and anthologies, and my literary autobiography appears as an extended essay in "Contemporary Authors." My poems have recently appeared in "Rattle" ,"Tiferet," and "U.S. 1 Worksheets". Work has also appeared in "The Valparaiso Poetry Review," and "Umbrella." Recent books include 'One Bowl" (2012); "Recycling Starlight" (2010); and "The Night Marsh" (2008).. Earlier collections include "Along River Road"; "Lizard Light: Poems From the Earth"; and "Buried in the Sky." My illustrated alphabestiary for children, "The Beastie Book," was published in the December, 2009, by Shenanigan Books. I have won three poetry fellowships from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, as well as awards from the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, the Mary Carolyn Davies Memorial Award from the Poetry Society of America, and the first William O. Douglas Nature Writing Award for my work in the anthology "American Nature Writing 2002." I was invited to be a "featured poet" and read at the 2010 Dodge Poetry Festival, and was awarded a residency / fellowship for January, 2011, at VCCA (Virginia Center for the Creative Arts." I live in the South Jersey shore area, and work as a visiting poet in the schools through programs sponsored by the New Jersey State Council on the Arts and various other agencies. I'm still fairly new at blogging and hope to add more graphics, etc., as I learn more.
This entry was posted in Other poetry, Travel. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s