About the Women Have Wings Residency (WHWr)

Founded in 2014, the Women Have Wings Residency is an international art residency functioning as a laboratory of conversation and engagement. Each year WHWr invites one global activist from the WHW Courage Awards and one United States-based socially engaged artist. This is a residency connecting artists with global activists creating networks that expand each year. Recipients are self-identifying women committed to human rights for women and girls. These pioneers of change and social justice come together for one week in a laboratory situation in Boulder, Colorado to engage in generative conversation about the successes and struggles in their work toward justice and equality for women.

Primarily the expectation of activist and artist/activist is a conversation. We use the term residency and laboratory but it could also be called a retreat.  For the WHW awardees and for socially engaged artists who work tirelessly in their fields, the residency allows space and time for contemplation and relaxation. Residents are cooked healthy and delicious meals and there are not heavy demands loaded on the participants. 

With conversation and exchange at the center of the residency, long-term collaboration is not the primary goal but is encouraged and nurtured when possible. Ideally these women share ideas and resources to support their individual goals and networks with the possibly to ignite future collaborations. 

The WHW residency program is a week of listening, creating and reflecting. Conversation beween residents  happens for a chunk of time in the morning and through lunch. This leaves plenty of time for eating fresh farm cooked food, walking in the foothills of Boulder, reading, writing and resting in the afternoon.  It is a week of unfolding that culminates in a dinner party to honor the residency recipients and provide an opportunity to share their work with a range of community members interested in art, socially engaged art practice,  social justice, equality for women, and  international politics. 

Women selected for the residency may be emerging, mid-career, or established in their field. The global activist is a Women Have Wings Courage Award Recipient as well as a selected participant for the Aspen Ideas Festival.  The socially engaged artist is selected by an advisory board made up of art curators, directors, and previous participants.

Past Women Have Wings Artist / Activist Residency Recipients include:

2017 – Ruth Ojiambo Oching and Eliza Woloson

2016 – Obiageli (Oby) Nwankwo and Jules Rochielle

2015 – Hope Hervilla and Micol Hebron

2014- Shabnam Ramaswamy  and Angela Ellsworth

About the Women Have Wings Courage Awards (WHW)

“Each Year women have wings awards WHW Courage Awards to women around the world who are living in the courageous spirit of Amelia Earhart. Each award recipient will have demonstrated bold action in pursuit of her dreams, whether that dream be to bring fresh water to her community, heal a village from genocide, or seek an end to gender-based violence. Or no matter the magnitude of her goal, the first step towards every woman’s dream requires an act of great courage. The inaugural year of the WHW courage wars – 2012 – celebrated the 75th anniversary of the famed pilot’s around-the-world attempt. In this year, WHW granted three Awards. In 2013 WHW granted Awards to six women, and in 2014 WHW again granted Awards to six women. With an endowment funded by the sale of the only flying and fully-restored sister ship of Earhart’s trusty 1935 Lockheed Electra 10E by, WHW will continue to acknowledge, in perpetuity, women of great vision and courage.  This vintage airplane, inherited and sold by Kristen Wolf, has become one of the largest physical gifts to the global women’s movement. To date, her generosity has honored and uplifted the work of fifteen female activists from around the world.” (womenhavewings.org)