Marisa Dipaola, USA / Portugal

Residency Period: August 1, 2016 - July 31, 2017


Bio

Marisa Dipaola was born barefoot on December 12th, 1977, and grew up in the cedar swamps and coastal Atlantic of southern New Jersey. She graduated with honors from the Rhode Island School of Design in 2000 where she majored in painting and began experimenting with site-specific sculptural installations. Upon graduation, Marisa received a travel grant to study la Mezquita, in Cordoba, Spain, which began a collection of travels to eighteen countries, studying the sacred architecture and natural wonders, producing site-specific artworks in Japan and Iceland as well as entire series of artwork while on residence in Spain, India, Italy, Egypt, Austria, and Bahrain.

She has exhibited her works internationally at museums, galleries, universities, cultural institutions, community gathering places, outdoors within natural sculptural parks and urban revitalization projects.

URL: dropr.com/marisadipaola


On-hiatus Proposal Summary

In the course of being a nomadic artist, Marisa Dipaola has wandered throughout the landscape in diverse surroundings, constantly inspired by the natural world that embraces us all. After residing in the southern Austrian Alps for three years, she and her family are ready for a road trip to move to southern Portugal, in order to buy and renovate an old farm as a sustainable, permaculture project: moonfarmers. Raising her three-year old daughter while this major project is on the go, she is unable to foresee any free-time to take part in the artworld, at least for a year or so. Instead, she will dedicate her time and artistic effort to turning an abandoned property into a sustainable small farm and retreat, and quite possibly a future artist residency.

Her time will be spent with rebuilding a sustainable habitation, sourcing and planting fruit and nut trees, native edibles, sacred seeds, establishing berry patches, grape vines, mushroom patches, a chicken coop, a small fish pond, a huge vegetable patch. She will use sculptural elements to create terraced farming areas, enhance microclimates and enable year-round cultivation courtesy of cold frames fashioned from old windows as well as illuminating indoor growing areas, a few wind-chimes, alternative-energy-generating works, and the interior redesign & redecoration of their living space. On a more scientific front, she hopes to incorporate the skills she learns during this time to create various sculptural projects that encourage growth, combining illuminated works with fungal works and garden projects to create sustainable, living artworks. Any additional free time she finds will be spent mending clothes from the pile she’s had gathering for years and to complete more butterfly carpets -- and there is that quilt she has wanted to make for her bedroom.

She hopes that the time working and reflecting while on-hiatus from the artworld, but proceeding with her moonfarmers project will guide the future, whichever way it grows.


Final Report


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recent comments

On Jul 31 2017, mathieu commented on revival: part IV: thank you for the reports and for the gorgeous photographs, your adventure is very inspiring![...]

On Jul 31 2017, co-director (s) commented on revival: part IV: I'm all choked up... July 31 happened to be my birthday too; what a last day! Thank you to you all!![...]

On Jul 31 2017, co-director (m) commented on revival: part IV: Thank you so much for your generous contribution to this project Marisa - and everyone (we know it's[...]

On Jul 30 2017, co-director (s) commented on revival: part three: One thing we regret not to have done sooner is to make the comment section capable of posting images[...]

On Jul 29 2017, marisa commented on revival: part one: Most of our gardening is playing the long-game & indeed for the patient-hearted. some of our tre[...]


Southern (un)comfort

Yesterday we journeyed down to the Southern coast,
to segment the trip to drop off Mohamed’s parents at the Faro airport.
For us, it was an excellent opportunity to see the differences of the regions,
especially with the climate and ocean (drier & warmer, less waves in the ocean),
which leads to different architecture and vegetation
(lots of olive and orange trees, scattered pomegranates & even date palms),
making it feel much more like a slightly cooler version of north Africa than Europe.

Most striking, the beachside cliffs were erosion-carved colored earth
(reminding me of the Badlands Natl. Park or somewhere in Utah)
and completely unlike the striated sloping rock cliffs we’ve gotten familiar with here.

Pine Cliffs coastline
Pine Cliffs coastline

But by far the most noticeable differences were the tourists and development,
with an incredible variety of vacationing Europeans, and many British,
there to enjoy multi-storied resorts, 22 golf courses, water slides, and ZooMarine
(a more humane version of SeaWorld, with proceeds used for marine rescues & recovery).
All in all, we felt totally out of place, out of our element,
and grateful that we are settling up on the West coast.
We do hope to grow many of the tropical fruits we saw thriving there,
hoping we can create a microclimate to support oranges, dates, and pomegranates
(we saw three pomegranate trees in bloom
on a trip earlier this summer to Reggello, Italia,
growing on a riverbank up in the mountains a little south of Florence.
Although it is much hotter there in summer, they have cold winters.
Overall it gave us hope.)

So we’ve returned to Zambujeira do Mar for a couple more days,
to finish laundry, recharge and repack before a few more weeks of camping in Rogil.

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