The Woodhaven Eco Culture Centre is located in Kelowna, British Columbia, in a 3.5 hectare nature conservancy, located at 969 Raymer Road. The Centre is a project of an agreement between the Regional District of the Central Okanagan and the Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies (FCCS) at the University of British Columbia. In this property, FCCS manages a large heritage home and its outdoor spaces.
In return for a low rent to cover costs, graduate students or postdoctoral scholars whose research focusses on eco cultures live in the home during the academic year. A self contained studio apartment is used to house visiting artists and scholars all year round. There is a small Studio Cabin on the property that is an ideal place to hold seminars, small retreats, art projects, events, and meetings from April till October. (see “Retreat Rental” page)
Graduate students from our MFA program have the opportunity to spend a weekend in the studio apartment on the property each fall to have uninterrupted time to work on their writing or artistic practice. We launched our annual Artist-in-Residence program in the summer of 2021. Each year we invite artists or writers to apply for a 4 to 8 week stay during the summer months working on their artistic practice and connecting with the community. From 2018 to 2020, MFA student Alison Trim, who is a visual artist from Ireland, created the Woodhaven Encounters posts on this blog documenting her time in residence. In 2014- 2015, we had several scholars and artists in residence, poet Cornelia Hoogland, Dr. David Wacks from the University of Oregon, a Spanish scholar in Medieval Iberian studies, Karen Connelly, Eileen Delahenty Pearkes, Katherin Edwards (winner of the Okanagan Short Story Contest) and Teresa Posyniak, visual artist. Dorothea Walker Elementary School had a forest school for children and three UBCO classes were held at the Eco Culture Centre. CRWR 473 (prof Nancy Holmes) and VISA 300 (prof Aleksandra Dulic) had one drawing / writing class with local ecoartist Lori Mairs in September; later in the same month CRWR 473, VISA 300 and VISA 322 (prof Steven Rayner) met with Westbank First Nations educators, Grouse and Pamela Barnes, for an introduction to local indigenous culture and history. The summer of 2015 saw a Writing Intensive Course with Mark Giles, Ashok Mathur, Joan Crate, Cicely Nicholson, Warren Cariou and Alison Calder. The Centre was also the home of the 2015 Woodshed Reading Series which hosted several author readings and musicians.
Search this blog for information on rental of the artist studio (reasonable rates and a lovely space for writing, drawing, thinking, being.) Contact Frances.Brouse@ubc.ca for more information.