Blue Ridge Mountains, North Carolina  

Week A: Sun-Sat, July 12-18, 2015
Week B: Sun-Sat, July 19-25, 2015
Week C: Mon-Sun, October 19-25, 2015

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Wildacres 2015 Online Registration and Workshop Listings will GO LIVE no later than 12 Noon, on Monday, March 2.

The Wildacres Experience:
Wildacres Art Workshops is an exceptional retreat experience for artistic immersion and creative camaraderie in the beauty of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Open to adult students of all skill levels, these one-week workshops are designed to inspire the experienced artist to explore new methods and ideas, and acquaint the novice with methods and techniques in a selected discipline.  

Small class sizes ensure individual attention to your work and creative goals. Throughout the week studios remain open to registered students offering extensive time to focus on you work, cultivate new ideas and skills.

Students may enroll in the consecutive summer sessions A and B to thoroughly investigate one medium, or try something new. The splendor of autumn colors and the warmth of crackling fires in the cool October evenings make the Fall session an irresistible artistic getaway.

A family member or friend is welcome to accompany you for the week and simply enjoy the retreat’s mountain setting and environs for the cost of lodging, meals and gratuity.  

Upon completion of a weeklong workshop, participants may be awarded Ringling College CEUs.

Ringling College of Art and Design Wildacres Art Workshops are funded in part through the generosity of the Wildacres Retreat Foundation and the Blumenthal Foundation.

Costs, Policies and Procedures
Your Week at a Glance
Wildacres Faculty Biographies


The workshops are adult oriented: students 15-18 years of age must be enrolled in a class and be accompanied by an adult.  Children under the age of 15 are not admissible to the program.

ACCOMMODATIONS are double-occupancy lodging with private baths.  Space is very limited.  Roommates are assigned according to gender or you are welcome to enroll a friend or spouse to enjoy the mountaintop with you.  All guests staying on site at the retreat, including companions not enrolled in class will be charged lodging, meals, and gratuity fees for each session. For those wishing to stay off-site, a $25 registration fee will be assessed along with a Commuter Meals fee of $110, plus $15 gratuity.

Special requests made at the time of registration will be accommodated if possible on a first-come, first-served, needs basis.   There are no elevators.  When registering, please indicate ground level if required. Specific room requests are considered when possible but cannot be guaranteed.  

Rooms provide two twin beds or a twin and a double bed, pillows, linens, a light blanket and a spread, a ceiling fan, and one set of towels per person. Towel change is mid-week.  There is minimal storage for clothing and personal belongings. Rooms are not air-conditioned but summer nights are comfortably cool; there is self-regulated heat when needed.  NO PETS are permitted at the retreat.

Negotiating the Grounds at Wildacres.  Be prepared for a certain amount of required walking for meals and classes. Participants must be able to negotiate some steps and/or inclines on paths to the dining hall, lodges, patio, canteen, auditorium, amphitheater, and some of the studios. Please note that Wildacres elevation is 3,300 feet.

17 family-style meals are served in the Retreat dining hall.   Please indicate dietary restrictions when enrolling and every effort will be made to accommodate your needs. Throughout the week a wake-up bell rings at 7:30 AM. Breakfast is served at 8 AM.  All meals are announced with a bell rung 10 minutes before the dining hall opens.  Lunch is at 12:30 PM daily and dinner is at 6 PM, except for the first and last days of the program, when it is at 6:30 PM.  

*During the summer session weekend overnight the retreat meal service closes following Saturday morning breakfast and resumes at Sunday dinner. Participants enrolled in sessions A and B may enjoy local dining available within a 3-10 miles drive or a small kitchenette with refrigerator and microwave is available on site for self-service.  

ALL attendees:
$ 25    Registration Fee (non-refundable) - once per year
$150   Meals per person/per session
$140   Lodging per person/per session
$  15   Gratuity per person/per session                     

plus Workshop Tuition:
$415   Tuition for standard courses
$435   Tuition + $40 Studio Fee for any Clay Studio
$435   Tuition + $40 Studio Fee for Sculpture
$435   Tuition + $40 Studio Fee for Surface Design & Decorative Finishes
$415   Tuition + $15 Studio Fee for Book Art with Printmaking
$415   Tuition + $25 Model Fee for Figure Workshop
$415   Tuition + $15 Studio Fee for Painting with Cold Wax and Oils

$  35   Overnight Lodging per person for participants enrolling in both
           Sessions A and B   *Refer to meals information above.

An administrative fee of $45 will be assessed for all transfers between classes or sessions. Transfers from the Summer to Fall session are not permitted after June 1.

Summer 2014Cancellation in writing received prior to June 1, 100% refund except for the $25 non-refundable registration fee. After June 1, refunds are not possible.
Fall 2014Cancellation in writing received prior to September 1, 100% refund except for the $25 non-refundable registration fee. After September 1, refunds are not possible.

All cancellations may be submitted by mail, fax to 941-955-8801, or email to cssp@ringling.edu. 

ALL Sessions: You may substitute someone to attend in your place up to one week prior to the program start date.  At the time of substitution, the person filling your space must register with CSSP and pay a $45 administrative/transfer fee.

Ringling College will not refund the cost of any unused portion of your program. 

Ringling College and/or Wildacres Retreat reserve the right to require persons not complying with College and/or Retreat policies to leave the program with no refund.

In the event a workshop is cancelled, the College’s liability is limited to the return of fees paid to us for that course and session. All students accept full responsibility for personal injury and/or personal losses during the program. Applications and payments are acknowledgement of the terms and conditions as outlined in this brochure. The College assumes no liability for travel expenses or nonrefundable airline tickets that cannot be used due to any workshops being cancelled or any misprints online or in the print catalog.

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WILDACRES RETREAT is located about an hour's drive north of Asheville, North Carolina, just off the Blue Ridge Parkway, three miles from the village of Little Switzerland.
JULY sessions begin on SUNDAY.
OCTOBER session begins on MONDAY.
Check-in is between 3 and 5 PM in the North Lodge.   Participants may settle into their rooms and stroll the grounds until dinner at 6:30 PM.
ORIENTATION ibegins at 7:30 PM the evening of check-in.  Attendance is mandatory. 

  • Meet the Ringling College and Wildacres Retreat staffs
  • The Wildacres Story
  • Program Announcements
  • Faculty Introductions
  • Break out sessions with your instructor in your workshop studio.

Throughout the week a wake-up bell rings at 7:30 AM. Breakfast is served at 8 AM.  All meals are announced with a bell rung 10 minutes before the dining hall opens.  Lunch is at 12:30 PM daily and dinner is at 6 PM, except for the first and last days of the program, when it is at 6:30 PM.  Many people enjoy relaxing in rocking chairs on the patio or around the fireplace in the North Lodge after a creative day.

Faculty demonstrations in methods and materials will take place throughout the week inviting you to consider a spectrum of artistic approaches to enhance your creative exploration.  Take advantage of these opportunities to learn more about art topics and processes that may inspire your own work.

Friday’s Schedule in July // Saturday’s Schedule in October:  This final full day on the mountain has a unique schedule. ALL classes meet in the morning for critiques or completion of final work. Students and the faculty select work for the evening’s art exhibition. After lunch, instructors hang the show, and at 5 PM everyone gathers for a wine and cheese reception followed by dinner at 6:30 PM. 

On the final morning at breakfast, goodbyes are exchanged as everyone prepares to head back down the mountain. The week will be remembered as a wonderful time of sharing friendship and creative focus.

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(This list will be updated for Wildacres 2015 shortly.)

Lucy Barber has a BFA from Pratt Institute in Photography and an MFA from Brooklyn College of the City University of New York in Painting. She has taught at Pratt Institute, The College of William & Mary, Maine College of Art, Ringling College of Art and Design, Bowdoin College, Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts, Brooklyn College of the City University of New York, State University of New York at Farmingdale, Riverdale Country School, Bronx, NY, and International School of Painting, Drawing, and Sculpture, Montecastello, diVibio, Italy. Lucy is a member of Zeuxis, a collaborative of artists practicing still-life painting. She has exhibited nationally in numerous solo and group exhibitions, and also has exhibited in Italy and Greece. Barber’s work has been reviewed in The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, and Art New England, among others. Her works are part of corporate and private collections, including the United States Department of State, General Electric Corporation, Lenox, Inc., and Pfizer Inc. www.lucybarber.com 

Seth Barendse received his BFA from Oregon College of Art and Craft. Working with mud for the past 15 years, his studies began under the instruction of Tuu Din Nguyen at Booker High School in Sarasota, FL where he later taught from 2001-2006 following his studies at State College of Florida (SCF, formerly Manatee Community College) under the instruction of Ted Camp and Annette Sidner.  He is currently the Studio Technician for SCF, Venice Campus, has taught for Ringling College Continuing Studies, and has assisted with the Clay Studios at Ringling College’s Wildacres Art Workshops since 2008.  Barendse is a highly skilled artisan throwing much of his clay work, and also incorporates mixed media in his pieces.  His work is exhibited in Florida, North Carolina, Colorado, and Oregon.

Matteo Caloiaro earned his BFA from Ringling College of Art and Design. Matteo is a successful painter and illustrator and is also a member of the Illustration faculty at Ringling College of Art and Design. His work is part of numerous private collections, and he is represented by M Gallery of Fine Arts in Sarasota, FL, and Kiley Court Gallery in Provincetown, MA. www.caloiaro.com 

Elena De La Ville mixes photography, digital, silver based and alternative processes, with wax, encaustic medium and pigments. She loves everything about wax. It is texture upon texture, it is softness and smell, it is built up in layers that hide and reveal at the same time.
Elena studied at the Escuela de Bellas Artes in Caracas, Venezuela, and then traveled to London to study Textile Design at Chelsea School of Art and Design. She has shown at Shaw Cramer Gallery and Dragonfly Gallery on Martha's Vineyard, Nelson Gallery, Lexington, VA, Florida Craftsmen Gallery, St. Petersburg, FL, Montserrat College of Art, Beverly, MA and Boca Raton Museum of Art and her work is in the collections of MUSEO de Arte Contemoraneo and  Museo Acarigua Araure. Her work is included in numerous private an public collections.
She has received: Honorable Mention at the 58th Annual All Florida Juried Competition and Exhibition, Boca Raton Museum of Art, Directors Award at the 3rd National Encaustic Conference, Montserrat College of Art in Beverly, MA, Honorable mention, EPHEMERA Show, The Arts Center, St Petersburg, FL , Ann Culvert Award for Creativity, All Island Art Show, Martha's Vineyard, MA and the Ruth Bogan Award All Island Art Show, MA. www.edelaville.com 

Bridget Elmer  Bridget is an artist, teacher, bookmaker and letterpress printer.  She received her MFA in Book Arts as well as a Masters in Library and Information Studies from the University of Alabama, where she was awarded a Windgate Fellowship and a Faculty Scholar Award.  She has taught in a variety of educational settings, including Asheville BookWorks, Colorado College, Florida State University, Ox-Bow, and the Penland School of Crafts.  In addition, she has over fifteen years of experience in arts administration and fund development.  Bridget is the Southeast Chapter Chair for the Guild of Book Workers and was recently invited to join the Board of Directors for the College Book Arts Association.  Her work is exhibited widely and can be found in collections across the country. 

Joseph Loccisano is Manager of the Fine Art Gallery at Manatee Community College. He also teaches figure drawing, printmaking, and intercultural humanities. Loccisano holds a Master’s degree from the University of South Florida. Loccisano has taught figure drawing and figure painting for the Illustration Department at Ringling College of Art and Design; and Art & Culture at Nova Southeastern University. His artistic residencies include the Robert Blackburn Printmaking Workshop, and the Art Student’s League in New York City. He is Vice President of Internal Affairs for the Southern Graphics Council, and Vice City Director of the Sarasota Sister Cities Association (Treviso, Italy, delegation). For the past three years he has exhibited along with the printmakers of Sarasota Ink, and most recently participated in an exhibition at the Tampa Museum of Art. Loccisano continues to teach for Ringling’s Wildacres Artists’ Retreat as well as jury and lecture on art and art history. http://joeloccisano.carbonmade.com/ 

Brooke Olivares-Caloiaro earned a BFA, in Illustration from Ringling College of Art and Design. Olivares is a gallery painter represented by Kiley Court Gallery, Provincetown, MA, and Ghostprint Gallery, Richmond, VA. She has had works published and clients include CMYK, FORMAT Magazine, RISEN Magazine, North American Literary Review, Ringling PERSPECTIVE, The San Diego Reader, The Cimarron Review, and Recording Magazine.  Brooke is currently a memer of the Illustration Department faculty at Ringling College.  www.brookeolivares.com or www.brookeolivares.blogspot.com 

Dwight Rose received his BFA degree in Paintingfrom Ringling College of Art and Design. Over his 30-year career, Rose has won numerous awards and his work has been part of many collections including those of Exxon-Mobile, Qatar Petroleum, Qatar National Bank, Qatar General Tourism Authority, Suntrust Bank Florida, University of North Carolina Greensboro, Shelton Group of Companies (Charlotte NC), Peoples Employment Exchange (Sarasota FL), Kybele Hotel, (Istanbul Turkey), and Wake Forest University; and the personal collection of the first lady of Qatar, Her Highness Sheika Mozah Bint Nasser AL Misnad.  Rose has previously taught in both Ringling’s degree and community art programs, and VCU School of the Arts in Qatar.
Rose has traveled internationally and painted scenes from Jamaica, USA, India, Thailand, Russia, China, Qatar, Oman, Egypt, Jordan, Turkey, Morocco, Italy, and Greece. He currently resides and works with his wife Ruth Beals in Spartanburg South Carolina where he conducts workshops, exhibits and teaches watercolor painting at the Art School in the Chapman Cultural Center.  http://watercolorimpressions.artspan.com

Annette Sidner holds an MFA from University of South Florida and BFA from Eckerd College. She has served on the faculty of State College of Florida for the past 10 years, where she teaches sculpture, 3-D design and advanced ceramics courses, and has been a Ringling College of Art and Design Continuing Studies faculty for 5 years.   Sidner has served as a senior staff artist at the Sarasota Design Studio of Feld Productions, producers of all domestic and International units of the Walt Disney Ice Shows and the Ringling Brothers Circuses where she oversaw the design and construction of thirteen Disney on Ice productions.   Sidner’s sculptural clay pieces are conceived in her imagination and then skillfully presented in realistic figurative clay work.  Her work is exhibited at the Manatee Art Center, and annually at the SCF and Ringling College of Art and Design faculty exhibitions.

Michael James White graduated in 1985 from the first Illustration class at Ringling College of Art and Design. He started drawing at age 2 and was published by age 11. At 14 he completed his original comic book series and was painting murals for churches and creating courtroom sketches for newspapers. Since then, his clients have included Marvel Comics, Coca-Cola, Amoco Oil, Delta Airlines, Hyatt Hotel, The Ritz-Carlton, and Atlantis Resort. He has taught at Ringling College since 1993, and says, “Growing up, I was always the teacher’s helper.  Now that I’ve become a teacher, I try to teach art the way I wish I had been taught.” www.michaelwhiteart.biz 

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Contact Us:

Submit Request for Information OR Update Records

Ringling College of Art and Design
Continuing Studies and Special Programs
2700 North Tamiami Trail
Sarasota, FL 34234-5895
email: cssp@ringling.edu
phone: 941.955.8866
fax: 941.955.8801