Artists in Residence

Since opening we’ve hosted a growing collection of artists, builders, and designers that have, for a brief period of time, called on Key West for inspiration. We’ll continue with this tradition as we move forward, so if you or someone you know wants to spends some time in Key west to create, please let us know!

Duke Riley - Brooklyn, NY: Tattoo artist, renegade performer & printmaker

Duke was our first COAST Projects resident artist, occupying a small, slightly suspicious corner in the backyard. He built a pigeon coop from salvaged ships and boatyard debris and proceeded to train homing pigeons to fly with tiny video cameras. Yes, we were pretty intrigued, too, especially since Duke was rather vague about the end game. Duke trained the pigeons in the waters surrounding Key West and eventually sailed them all the hay to Havana, Cuba where he used the birds to smuggle Cuban cigars back to COAST.

Believe it when you see it…

Duke Riley—Trading with the Enemy PREVIEW from Duke Riley on Vimeo.

Rich Blundell - Boston, MA: Wooden surfboard designer & builder

Nearly a decade ago, Rich developed an innovative, environmentally friendly technique for building hollow wooden surfboards and since then, the company he co-founded, Grain Surfboards, has gone on to sell and teach the techniques around the US. These days Rich spends most of his time in Australia where he’s embarking on a PhD in Cosmic Evolution and teaching surfboard building workshops though his new organization, Tree to Sea. But we were lucky enough to have hosted him for nearly a month in which time he guided a few collaborative builds and helped design a couple of Key West-specific paddleboards.

Joel Erland - Philadelphia, PA: Sculptor

Joel just rolled into town in his vintage Argosy trailer stuffed to the gills with foam molds for his latest project that’s part of the annual Sculpture Key West event. Having just arrived, we’re not exactly sure what’s in store but we do know that he has great taste in beer since he dropped us a case the other day. More to come…

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