We purchased the building that now houses Lafayette Flats in June of 2014 and worked on its renovation for the rest of the summer, fall and through the winter. By the time we opened to guests in April of 2015, we had learned a lot about the rhythms of the seasons in Fayetteville.
Mostly we recognized that winters are very quiet as our outdoor adventure town took some time off from the frenetic pace of the warm-weather months.
As we pondered what winter would hold for occupancy at Lafayette Flats, we knew that there would be long periods when we would have few guests and the building would be mostly empty. Since our business plan includes supporting the arts as one of its core principles, we decided to host an artist for a winter residency.
Given our interest in visual art, our first thought was to provide space for a painter to live and work through the winter months, but since there is no real studio space within the Flats, we opted instead on a writer’s residency.
For four winters we hosted The New River Gorge Writer-in-Residence at Lafayette Flats and were fortunate to have a tremendously talented writer each year. They were Eric Shonkwiler (2015), Mary Ann Henry (2016), Kathleen Jacobs (2017) and Wendy Welch (2018).
For 2019 we thought we’d try something new: Going back to our original idea of hosting a visual artist, we thought if we could find the right person working in the right medium that we might be able to make it work. We are thrilled with our selection.
Announcing the 2019 New River Gorge Artist in Residence at Lafayette Flats
Rosalie is an illustrator specializing in vibrant watercolor nature illustration. She is inspired by the wild landscape of the West Virginia family farm where she grew up. This past summer, Rosalie was the Artist in Residence at The Great Smoky Mountains National Park and she just returned from a 6 week trip to Jordan.
We first became aware of Rosalie’s work when she had a show of mushroom paintings at Taylor Books in Charleston. One of the original paintings we saw at that show now resides in Quinnimont.
We look forward to welcoming Rosalie to Fayetteville this winter!