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Blog by Susan Neilson (June 2019)

People have been asking, "What was it like?" In this post, I will try to give an answer.

It seems like yesterday, but at about this time last year I decided to send in an application. I am so glad I did!

Six Great Reasons to Apply!

My humble opinion ❤

1. The Application
The application requirements might look a bit overwhelming, but they have asked excellent questions. The importance of KIRA already begins with this step.  I really found it to be a valuable process, clarifying goals and priorities for my art practice. Understanding the questions also help the artist to learn about what the KIRA selection committee will be looking for

2. Anticipation
If you are fortunate enough to receive an offer, the fun begins in February! You will be planning for something completely new. Not knowing what to expect is a big part of the excitement!

3. Worthy of Your Bucket List - Unlike anything else out there!
This is a world-class residency program, still quite new, already developing an amazing reputation. It is truly a unique opportunity

4. Culture and Kindness in St. Andrews
Kindness generosity and trust are truly contagious. There is a special kind of contentment and acceptance that seems to spread from person to person in this lovely coastal New Brunswick town. You will meet really wonderful people, and you will be in awe of the way people here pull together to support their community. Every day there seems to be another special event to look forward to.


Special events at the amphitheatre were always very well attended. KIRA supports the arts in so many different ways!

5. Leadership and Generosity
This program shows us all how one extraordinary person with a vision can start a ripple and recruit support from others to make important things happen.You will meet Mrs. Lucinda Flemer, the incredible woman who started Kingsbrae Gardens and the KIRA program. She has improved lives for countless others thanks to her influence and her actions.

6. Positive Growth - Professional and Personal
For me, KIRA started the inspiration for a quite significant shift in perspective. The KIRA residency experience can be profound. Inspirations come from trips to rocky beaches, time in the peaceful gardens, brilliant dinner conversations with amazing people, and inspiring life lessons learned from spending time with other artists. You will have days of full immersion in a lovely studio of your own, with great meals and beautiful private accommodations, plus wonderful things to see and do, right within walking distance.I could not have asked for anything more perfect!

Sending Thanks
Thank you so much to the many people who make the Kingsbrae Arts Centre and Kingsbrae Gardens work. I am very very grateful to everyone who works there, 
to everyone who visited, and to everyone who shared the experience. Living at  KIRA, for one extraordinary month, was an honour and a pleasure!


Vlog by Kalina Winska and Karen Gustafson (July 2019)

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