Playa Guide 2021

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PLAYA | 47531 HWY 31, SUMMER LAKE, OR 97640 | 541-943-3983 | WWW.PLAYASUMMERLAKE.ORG


What is PLAYA

Since 2011, PLAYA has supported new works and collaborative efforts in the arts and sciences through its residency program. In the next 10 years, PLAYA will engage artists, scientists and the local area community through workshops, residencies,


themed weekends, presentations, performances, exhibits and events. Through these activities, PLAYA inspires creativity and exploration at the nexus of art and science.

Where is PLAYA

PLAYA is on the far western edge of Oregon’s Great Basin, an expansive and captivating landscape. PLAYA’s 76-acre

campus lies at the base of Winter Rim (6,200 ft elevation)


Why is PLAYA Unique

Situated in a living lab on a campus designed to

support creativity, PLAYA’s program participants

can readily explore, experience and find inspiration from the geology. ecology, biodiversity, archaeology and desert landscape.


PLAYA 2021

alongside the intermittent desert lake, Summer Lake.

2021 PLAYA WORKSHOP SERIES June through September of each year, PLAYA offers a select amount of workshops and themed weekends that capitalize on the natural assets of its environment. PLAYA is in the wide open landscape of the Oregon desert but has an intimate setting. With a maximum of 12 people in a workshop, your time at PLAYA is conducive to connecting with others and the instructor. To learn more or to register visit our website:


September 23 - 26 WRITING IN THE OASIS Instructor: Jennifer Elise Foerster $800 Whether you come with a writing project in process or a blank page seeking inspiration, we will write to discover anew, creating and responding in our shared present, in dialogue with one another and with the land, elements, and spirit of the place we will together inhabit for this brief time near a high desert’s ephemeral lakebed.


September 3 - 5 DESERT SOUNDSCAPES & DEEP LISTENING ECOLOGY Instructor: Dana Reason $275 Learn to facilitate a deeper understanding of our relationship to sound, nature and ourselves. Through guided sound walks, listening activities, field recordings, collage and sound journaling, we will develop an ability to both listen to the natural environment, generate sustainable listening attitudes and creative practices, as well as connect with and to Playa’s unique soundscape.

July 8 - 12 PIGMENT AND WATER: EXPLORATION, OBSERVATION, IMAGINATION, AND CHANCE Instructor: Daniela Naomi Molnar $460 PLAYA’s juxtaposition of dry and wet landscapes provides the perfect backdrop to learn new techniques and processes to help you create innovative new paintings.

May 21 - 23 BIRDING IN SUMMER LAKE Instructors: Pepper Trail $275 – SOLD OUT This guided tour will highlight the spectacular abundance and diversity of birds in the summer Lake Wildlife Area. From Sandhill Cranes to Black-necked Stilts, Wilson’s Phalaropes to Sages Thrashers, this high desert oasis hosts some of Oregon’s most beautiful and fascinating birds.

August 27 - 29 BEGINNING ASTROPHOTOGRAPHY: MILKY WAY NIGHTSCAPES Instructor: Kevin Morefield $300

August 19 - 23 AN EDUCATION OF ARID PLACES Instructor: Diana Six $325 This workshop is a hybrid workshop/residency approach with guided field experiences in the morning led by Diana Six, Professor of Forest Entomology/Pathology, followed by afternoons of open studio time to creatively interpret and respond to what you experienced in the medium of your choice.

Learn to image the night sky, hands-on with an expert Astro-photographer in one of the darkest locations in the United States.


July 15 - 18 ART + ECOLOGY OF PLAYA Instructors: Daniela Naomi Molnar & Stacy Moore $460 September 10 - 12 WHERE THE LAND MEETS THE EYE Instructor: Craig Childs $560 This workshop is about expressing a landscape through narrative and voice. What do you see when you look at a horizon?

This workshop offers a unique opportunity to learn from both a scientist and an artist and to experience how these fields inform and complement each other. You will start with a full day of hands-on learning about the ways that water dwellers and plants flourish in PLAYA’s ecosystem. You’ll then be guided in applying this new knowledge of aquatic ecology and plant ecology to creative explorations that will deepen and augment your understanding of this unique ecosystem.

September 16 - 19 GREAT BASIN NATURAL HISTORY Instructors: Daniele Mckay & Pepper Trail $400 Discover and explore the extraordinary geology, flora, and fauna of the Summer Lake region with ornithologist Pepper Trail and geologist Daniele McKay. In this 3-night experience, enjoy evening presentations by both experts and field trips in the valley for hands-on exploration and immersion into the natural history of Oregon’s Great Basin. PLAYA 2021


Give yourself the gift of immersion into your research and creativity. Self Directed Residencies Self-Directed Residencies are for adults seeking time and space to immerse in their creative or scientific work in an inspiring landscape and campus. Self-Directed Residencies are fee-based. They have the form of a residency without the formal application process and are more flexible and open for individual needs. Self-Directed Residencies arrivals are always on a Thursday with flexible departures. They start at a minimum of 2 nights and, during certain times, can last up to 10 nights. Each Saturday a presentation, field trip or hike take place for all residents.

• April 29 (10 night max) • May 6 (10 night max) • May 13 (4 night max) • July 1 (4 night max) • Sept 30 (10 night max) • Oct 7th (4 night max) • Nov 11th (10 night max)

Events Late Spring

PLAYA Photography Exhibit “An Educational of Arid Places” at The High Desert Museum

Saturday, July 24th

In A Landscape at PLAYA, *purchase tickets at

Saturday, August 7th

Music and Poetry at PLAYA with Laura Gibson and Anis Mojgani, Oregon’s Poet Laureate

To learn more visit self-directed-residencies/

Juried Residencies These are traditional residencies in which applications are accepted and are selected by a jury of professional peers. PLAYA’s residencies are open to the global community of scientists, naturalists, biologists, musicians, designers, sustainability leaders, social practice artists, musicians, visual artists, writers, performing artists, and collaborations and individuals engaged in the nexus of art and science. PLAYA welcomes a range of applicants – from emerging scientists and artists to those with an established history of accomplishment. PLAYA offers one-month, two-week and, new in 2022, five-day residencies at no cost from Jan – March and October – December. Applications open May 15th, 2021 for 2022 residencies. To apply go to

Learn more about PLAYA? Call us at 541-943-3983 or email info@playasummerlake. org to schedule a campus visit.


PLAYA 2021