It’s great to be in a communal situation where your self-absorption and work obsession is mirrored back to you. No apologies are necessary for breaking off to return to your studio, and in some way, in a real way, this is celebrated.
Civitella is geographically rich, and this asset can not be overemphasized. The regular forays into the renaissance landscape are stimulating, of course, but also soothing. They transfer easily from the “recreation” category to the “important for my work” column; this is only partly true, of course, but also a comforting illusion, to seamlessly blend work and play.
I feel the same way about meals and the other fellows. They are the highlights and companions in this too-short visit to the Land of Narcissus – too short because we want to live like this forever, but just right, because it is the real world that makes our residency meaningful, and we must go back. Don’t we?
Ward Shelley – 2010