The Back River Road Residency Retreat was established to provide time and space for artists to extend their work by engaging with the natural environment in a rural setting at Ed Levine’s former summer home in South Royalton, Vermont with a special emphasis on encouraging interdisciplinary activity and a new conversation between the artist and the landscape. Each summer, two individual or team residencies will be invited to spend up to 6 weeks at the South Royalton property, provided a stipend, and supported by a small on-call staff. 

Resources & Accommodations:

  • Self-directed residencies on a 10-acre property located in central Vermont —1.5 hours south of Burlington, Vermont and 2.5 hours north of Boston.
  • a one-bedroom house with a private sleeping loft for possible second person; a fully-fitted kitchen, laundry, bathroom, and living space; internet; and a studio/workshop on the property
  • Part-time Residency/Facility Manager lives off site but is ‘on-call’ to provide assistance and support artist-led public engagement activities
  • Engagement opportunities at and with Vermont Studio Center may be available
  • Temporary artworks may be produced and sited on the property with prior approval but removed at the end of the residency
  • Residents complete exit interviews to provide feedback about their experience.


  • Until further notice, individual applicants must be a Harpo alumni/grantee. If applying as a two-person team, lead applicant must be Harpo alumni/grantee;
  • Able to work independently and provide own form of transportation (a vehicle is required and not provided);
  • Interdisciplinary two-person teams are eligible and encouraged.



Until further notice, the opportunity is open to Harpo Foundation’s artist grantees through an annual invitation to apply

Land Acknowledgement

Back River Road sits on unceded ancestral land of the Abenaki people, the original inhabitants and caretakers of territory now encompassing parts of Quebec and the Maritimes of Canada as well as northern sections of New England including Vermont, New Hampshire, and upstate New York. We recognize that the Abenaki people have had a continuous presence in the region for over 10,000 years despite dispossession and genocide committed by the French, British, and the United States government. As an artist-endowed program working toward equitable representation in the visual arts, we are committed to working against systems of oppression using the power of art and creative expression.

To learn more about the ancestral homeland of the Abenaki visit: https://native-land.ca/maps/territories/abenaki- abenaquis/

Equity Statement

Back River Road Residency Retreat is committed to principles that address issues of diversity, equity and inclusion, regardless of race, ethnicity, age, religion, health and ability status, political affiliation, gender identity preference, sexual orientation, or any other consideration, and will stand in opposition to any action, or omission of action, that hinders any group or individual’s ability to fully participate in society.