The Ayatana Residency was an incredibly engaging and educational experience. The group of residents and hosts I was with where inspirational, generous and I really felt I left with a new community of enthusiastic sonic adventurers!

- Dominika Ksel (Biophony 2019)


If you're interested in the residency, apply! All aspects were well thought out and planned, the experts and activities were all relevant. There was consideration of every aspect from the choosing of participants (an amazing group of people that interacted well together and participated in thought provoking conversations and sharing of information) to the food and activities.

-Clara Laratta (Biophony 2019)


These programs expose artists to all sorts of biology/ecology workshops to help inform their #SciArt.

Today, we started off talking about basic bat ecology and wound up pondering the nature of Nature, and the ecological and psychological effects of globalization.

I always come away with questions and a renewed appreciation for the natural world, and for creative interpretation of it. Thank you again, Alexis Williams!

- Liv Monck-Whipp, zoologist (Bat specialist)

This is art/science sleep away camp, but with really good food, and you don’t get homesick because you are playing in the forest and that alone is pretty awesome. And there’s a bog. And science that will explode your brain. Apply.

- Amanda Besl (Germinate 2018)

This is the greatest residency! Apply!

- Allyssa Ellis, Germinate expedition leader


"My time at Ayatana is the gift that keeps on giving. I am infinitely grateful! It is a melting pot of the most delicious idea-jamming you can imagine, facilitated by one of the world’s most wonderful human beings. Alex’s curiosity and fervor are contagious; exploring the nexus of art & science with her (and the brilliant people she attracts to the residencies) is an unparalleled experience. Do yourself a life-enriching favor! Hope to see you there!"

-Robyn Crouch (Infinitesimal 2018)

"My time there has informed my work in ways both subtle and profound."

-Ellen Little (Biophilia 2018)


"If you are looking for a residency that is an active learning environment where you are engaged with research and the environment, then Ayatana is the place to be."

-Lauren Ruiz (Submerge 2018)


“The Ayatana residency allowed me to explore many aspects of scientific practice I would otherwise not be able to access on my own. It pushed me in directions and toward practices I would not have explored independently.”

- Shelly Smith (Infinitesimal 2018)

"A fabulous and fascinating week--terrific exposure to microscopes, labs, and experts. A window into another world & the language of science. Very enriching!"

- Poet, Miriam Segan (Infinitesimal 2018)


Where the reason of science is woven into the poetics of art."

-Kathryn Cooke (Submerge 2018


"I thoroughly enjoyed the experience - it was thoughtful, stimulating and very well organised. Alexis and Stephanie's attention to detail made the experience unforgettable. It felt like home away from home. This was 7 days of intense learning in a collegial atmosphere and the only recommendation I could make was DO IT AGAIN. Of the 3 three international residencies I have attended; I regard Biophilia as the ultimate learning experience."

-Gloria Florez (Biophilia 2018)

"I learned so much more than I anticipated and loved the people."

-Painter Ellen Little (Biophilia 2018)



"I have new respect for the Plant beings I share my living environment with. Learning and sharing communication with them and the others of the residency group brought calmness and comfort to my heart. With the connections Ayatana provides for every one, I believe we have grown stronger with new research to lead us on an elevating journey."

-Blake Evans (Germinate 2018)


"My time at Ayatana exceeded my expectations. The connections I’ve made are invaluable and I’m leaving with great energy and inspiration to carry into my practice. - You have a special gift for selecting the residents you bring together and for guiding the journey - thank you Alexis."

-Paper artist, Melissa Robertson (Biophilia 2018)


"An amazingly unique experience! Wonderful people, thoughtful activities, stimulating conversation, and tasty food. I feel like I did a year of learning in a week."

-Ceramacist, Angela Dieffenbach (Biophilia 2018)


"It's like an awesome science summer camp for artists."

- John Daemond ( Biophilia 2015 )


"My experience as part of Germinate was the best. I left inspired and full of renewed passion for my art practice. Ayatana allows you to explore and play with like-minded people during a week full of thought provoking interactions with local experts. I'm so glad I went!"

-Printmaker, Claire LaFontaine (Germinate 2018)


"Spending time with the Ayatana research group has enriched my life. Sharing focused time with artists who share the same passion for botany in all its forms created some amazing conversations, observations and imagination. This experience has energised me immensly and I have no doubt it will continue to influence my methodology in my work and my life."

- jeweler, Michelle Stewart (Germinate 2018)


"Each activity was thoughtfully chosen, and the experts were eager to share their knowledge, which created this wonderful climate of collaboration, exploration and inspiration. I didn't want to leave, but was eager to get back to my garden and home to create and also seek out experts in my area. Alex and her team run a well-organized and welcoming program, and I hope to be able to attend another program in the future. My advice for anyone interested is to DO IT and attend with a curious mind that is ready to experience and learn."

- Victoria Smith (Germinate 2018)


"A geekfest with great food! Thanks, Alexis and Stephanie." 

- MFA candidate, Carol Howard Donati (Biophilia 2015)


"The Nocturne residency week was full of adventure, fun and learning; I am coming home and continuing my practice with a greater depth of understanding and a new personal connection to my subject matter."

-Blawnin Clancy (Nocturn 2018)



"Your residency was so crazy influential. I big time love what you do."

-Photographer, Melinda Hurst Frye - (Creep 2016)


"The opportunities to explore different labs and locations and have access to specialists that are available through this program would be difficult to access ordinarily. I would recommend this residency to anyone who wants to supercharge their art practice, form networks and expand their lives beyond their current boundaries."

- Michelle Stewart (Germinate 2018)


"I attended one a few years back, it’s worth every penny and is amazing !! It’s truly amazing"

- Muffin Bernstein (Submerge 2016)



"A Parliament of Owls far exceeded my expectations. The sessions were well organized and deep as well as fun. The house and food were wonderful. Working in a small group was terrific. I learned something in every session (many things, actually), and was constantly stimulated by the others in the group."

-Fibers artist, Kate Goreman (Parliament of Owls 2018)



"I think the best thing for me about my time at Ayatana was the group of talented artists that I learned so much from. Learning and sharing with like minded individuals was invaluable."

-Experimantal photographer, Kate Houlne (Parliament of Owls 2018)

There is no other residency like this, I've attended twice now, and plan to come again. Each time I take part in these residencies, I learn new things to go towards my practice and meet amazing artists who inspire me to talk through ideas, as well as Alexis herself, she's a very inspiring artist and makes everyone feel supported and important when exploring new ideas.

-Bio artists, Mellisa Fisher (Nocturn 2017, Biophilia 2015)


"Finding like-minded peers who were willing to learn, play and experiment made Ayatana an invaluable experience for me."

- Painter, Amanda Besl (Germinate 2018)



    "My week with Ayatana was enriching to me both as an artist and a person! As an artist, the access to specialists and local wildlife in Gatineau provided ample opportunity for imaging and inspiration, and I left energized; as a person, I felt a great kinship with fellow residents and residency leaders alike around our shared passions for art and science, which I think opened the door to great discussion and resource sharing. The residency hosts are encouraging, thoughtful, and immensely knowledgeable, creating a really cool culture around the house that made me feel comfortable to geek out and contribute. I'd go back for another Ayatana residency in a heartbeat!"

    -Film maker and Ayatana expedition leader,
    Michael Pisano
    (Swarm 2017)


"I attended Ayatana’s Biophilia residency a few years ago. It was fabulous—Alexis is a brilliant, intuitive, kind guide."

Susan Rochester- (Biophilia 2014)


'This is an exceptionally well run and unique program. The excellent schedule of activities enabled us to learn a huge amount during the week and we were warmly and generously looked after throughout.  The residency house is very comfortable and thoughtfully crafted to create an informal and open space which allows ideas and laughter and friendships to flourish."

- Painter, Adele Pound ( Parliament of Owls 2017 )


"My time spent in the Biophilia residency was a new awakening. The people, the exchange of ideas and the time spent one on one with scientists passionate about what they do was inspiring in ways that will continue to benefit my art and creative life. Unlike any other residency I have encountered, this was an informative journey into worlds I would otherwise never have known about."

-Christine Moss ( Biophilia 2016 )

"Ayatana Artists' Research Program was fantastic, I learned an incredible amount about water and our connection with it. I really enjoyed the small group and the locations we explored."

- Muffin Bernstein (Submerge 2016)



"One of the most amazing weeks of my life"

-Sound artist, Michael McDermot ( Biophony 2016 )



"The most amazing part was the spectacular group of artists that the Biophilia residency pulled together. Everyone was interested, driven, and offered a different and informed perspective on things. I have never spent time with a better group of people."

- John Deamond (Biophilia 2015)

"It was invigorating to go on adventures with people with the same level of curiosity for the natural world."

- Painter, Anika Schneider ( Biophilia 2015 )


"At the Biophilia residency I felt like I had dropped in on a group of old friends. The residents selected were like-minded in our love of nature and art, but we were all specialized in our interests, which made for a dynamic group. I left the week full of new information and a real psychic charge to be creative."

-Photographer, Bill Scully ( Biophilia 2015 )


-La résidence Ayatana- Biophilia est un rêve qui prend vie! Artistes et amoureux de la nature se retrouvent ensembles et vivent des aventures excitantes et inoubliables. En plus de de créer des liens avec d’autres artistes qui partagent les même fascinations, mon séjour en Nouvelle-Écosse a fait naitre des nouvelles idées qui influencent positivement ma pratique artistique.

- Film maker Marjorie Lemay ( Biophilia 2015 )


'It was a priviledge to spend a week in such splendid company and I am very grateful that I was able to be part of the Parliment of Owls adventure. The Ayatana experience has been of enormous benefit to me and my work and I would thoroughly recommend it to anyone thinking of applying.'

- Adele Pound ( Parliament of Owls 2017 )



"Ayatana is where Artists go to Play.  Prepare to be inspired."

- Tracie Stewart ( Germinate 2017 )




"This residency was an important point in my life because it helped me find my artistic way. I will start an Environmental Transdisciplinary PhD Study, “Between Nature and Culture''

Biophilia (especially the visit to Andrew Pelling’s lab) caused an increase of my ambitions:)  I believe if this residency in Canada was possible maybe everything is possible :) "

- Karolina Żyniewicz
( Biophlia 2015 )