Joya: AiR / Jimena Centurión/ Argentina

“Joya:AiR es un tesoro dentro de Vélez Blanco. Un lugar donde se escucha el silencio y se descansa profundamente en sintonía con la respiración de la tierra. El tiempo se hace presente. El ahora es lo único que existe y a partir de ahí nace el espíritu creativo que impulsa a lo inesperado.

Entendí que cuando uno suelta todo tipo de apego, corporal y metal, no espera absolutamente nada, permitiendo que la vida suceda y aparezca en nosotros.

A veces cuesta ver y hasta creer lo mas simple que somos.

Estar en Joya me permitió una vez más, conectarme con mi ser y con mi presente, y reconocer que soy amor con el todo.

Cada ser, partícula y átomo que nos rodea siente nuestra presencia y lo que trasmitimos.

Si en cada instante pudiéramos recordar que somos un reflejo de nuestro entorno y éste un reflejo nuestro, y comprender que en realidad somos y queremos lo mismo, y que somos iguales, somos uno: somos amor.

Cuando logramos percibir ese amor en nosotros y en el otro, es cuando nos reconocemos (nos volvemos a conocer) y se genera un vínculo infinito, profundo y atemporal.


Inspirada en Van Gogh mi frase de cada día es:

‘no hay nada más verdaderamente artístico que amar, yo te amo’

‘there is nothing more truly artistic than to love, i love you’


Gracias Joya: AiR, Simon y Donna, por abrirme las puertas de su hogar y darme la oportunidad de conocerme más”. 

Jimena Centurión

Mi nombre es Jimena Centurión, tengo 30 años, soy argentina nacida en Buenos Aires. Vivi en Australia durante un año, y a partir de entonces viajé por Indonesia y España, hasta llegar a Joya: AiR, mi primera residencia de arte. 

Dibujo y pinto desde hace mucho tiempo y estudié Bellas Artes en Buenos Aires. Estudié también grabado y serigrafía. 

Hace tres años una fuerza se despertó en mí, y me llevó a estar presente en el hoy. 

A través de la respiración, el caminar, la danza, la escritura y el dibujo, entreno y desarrollo el estar presente. 

Utilizo bastante la acuarela y el acrílico, pintando lo que percibo delante de mí. En general mis trabajos son paisajes ya que es donde me encuentro presente, sin tiempo alguno, me encuentro a mí, respirando en paz. Observando una y otra vez la forma, la luz. Entendiendo y aprendiendo. 

Llevar mis sentidos cada vez más a distintos niveles y grados de conciencia, y entrenar el ojo, la mano y el corazón es mi entrenamiento de cada día. 

Me interesa y me apasiona seguir con esta línea de investigación a cada lugar que voy, rodeada de un nuevo entorno que me permita extender mi apertura de conciencia y percepción.

Simon Beckmann
Joya: AiR / Charlotte Price / England

“I came to Joya": AiR to experience an environment completely new to me and indeed arriving here was truly breathtaking. Cortijada Los Gázquez is surrounded by pine forested mountains and fields of almond trees. Wherever you walk your senses are immersed in a silence that is almost tangible and a heavy scent of aromatics growing wild at your feet.

I had not encountered a place like this and my initial ideas for the artwork I thought I would create wavered in a desire to explore the land and gather up pieces of and from the ground. I collected plants that were skeletal at the end of their life cycle, dried by the sun and wind. I found rocks with indentations of a prehistoric life. The limestone dusted everything and placed it in a semilunar world.

Collection of objects of natural history was already part of my art practice and I found it impossible not to create a still life of my new findings. The studio table became filled with traces of my experience in this landscape.

My work is normally sited in a rural landscape traversed with pathways through which I investigate a social history of human presence. Pathways of previously utilitarian purpose are represented in imagery of frail plant material collected from their edges. I use print techniques that allude to the sombre tones of a Victorian age of Natural History collection and its museology.

Walking in the landscape and a scrutiny of its geography and detail has been the substance of my practice.  Some inspirational reading has been:

Michael Landy            Nourishment A portfolio of 12 etchings

Richard Mabey           Weeds

Robert McFarlane         The Old Ways, The Wild Places

Edward Chell             The Garden of England, Bloom

Richard Long            Selected statements & interviews

Tom Trevor             Three Ecologies Lois Weinberger

Anna Pavord            Landskipping

Rebecca Solnit          Wanderlust

Christopher Tilley         A Phenomenology of Landscape

Nan Shepherd          The Living Mountain

Paul Farley & Michael Symmons Roberts       Edgelands

Numerous Field and Pocket Guides to Wild Flowers”

Charlotte Price

Simon Beckmann
Joya: AiR / Annabel Potterton / Ireland

“I am interested in the surroundings of wherever I am and how to achieve a sense of place and immediacy in my practice.  I worked on a bank of images, images collected whilst walking around Los Gázquez, to give a sense of the area, each painting being a moment in time during the residency.  Painting the images back in the studio allowed me to study the nuances of colour, the structures of the landscape and the surrounding ecology; at the same time making decisions on content, composition and colour.  When I am working I see every painting as an abstraction of colour and shape. 

It was a wonderful experience coming to Los Gázquez which allowed space to think and paint, to talk with and listen to the other artists, to enjoy the chat around the table and Donna’s amazing food, and to walk in the beautiful surroundings exploring the ecology of the area.  It is a very special place.  I arrived on my first day with trepidation as it was my first residency; I left feeling taller and braver.  Thank you to Donna and Simon for your amazing hospitality and kindness.”


Annabel Potterton


Simon Beckmann
Joya: AiR / Nuala Gorman / Ireland

“At 15.55 on Saturday September 1st I stepped off the Alsa bus into 34 degrees sunshine. Vélez-Rubio was eerily quiet as the inhabitants enjoyed their daily siesta. At 15.56 the sound of a car broke the silence and I heard my name being called. I turned around and saw Simon.

20 or 30 minutes further travel through the countryside brought us to Joya: AiR. From the top of the hill, it looked like a mirage glistening in the sunlight. Next morning I woke up asking myself what am I doing here? I can’t ever recall having two weeks of uninterrupted time to create.

My current investigations are concerned with cultural memory, emigration and family roots. This residency with Joya: AiR gave me the opportunity to experience how an emigrant might feel having left their familiar surroundings, and what difficulties they might encounter when they first arrive in a different country.

During my stay in Joya: AiR I met 15 people from different parts of the world. Almost everyone knew where Ireland is, but not one person knew where my home County of Westmeath is. For me this put things in perspective.
Over the two weeks, language was a common, recurrent topic among the residents. Though we all communicated through English, we didn’t always understand each other, resulting in a lot of blank looks, and further explanations. I have never been more aware of the language differences between British English, Irish English, and Canadian English, all so similar but very different.

As the first week progressed, I became deeply immersed in developing my technique of working with Cyanotype Printmaking. The abundance of sunshine facilitated working in this media. By the end of the second week I wished I had more time.

I was surprised by how easily I had settled into life off-grid, adapting to 30 + degrees temperatures, a different diet, Spanish time for dinner at 21.00, integrating with different nationalities, adjusting to water shortage, living without access to technology, very little phone coverage, and no access to transport or shops. Life became minimalistic and uncomplicated. I responded to the environment and allowed nature to enter my work. I learned to live in harmony with the insects and respect the trojan work of the ants. During my daily walks past the almond trees and through pine forests I found a resonance with the Aleppo pine, which is non-native to the area. It too is an emigrant, which took root in Andalucía. For some it was welcome and for others it is not. The bark shavings, which fall away from the Aleppo pine trees, gradually found a place in my work as a motif for the emigrant.

At 9.30am, Saturday September the 15th I stepped out of the pouring rain onto the AlSA bus, feeling creatively reinvigorated and replenished.

Many thanks Donna and Simon for all your kindness”.

Nuala Gorman

Simon Beckmann
Joya: AiR / Beatriz Torrecillas Blanes / España

“Joya: AiR es un lugar en el que el tiempo está presente, las conversaciones trascendentales son habituales y la desconexión es real.

Normalmente viajamos miles de kilómetros buscando nuevas experiencias. Pero a veces no hace falta ir tan lejos. En Joya: AiR he encontrado gente auténtica de todo el mundo, tiempo y energía para experimentar en un proyecto personal y un entorno muy especial.

Gracias a Simon, a Donna y a toda la gente que he encontrado por aquí, por hacer que esta experiencia sea única”.

Beatriz Blanes

Joya: AiR / Anahita Akhavan / Iran

“When I first arrived at Cortijada Los Gázquez (Joya: AiR), I took a long deep breath, filled my lungs with the unique scent of the land- a fusion of lavender and rosemary. I inhaled, the almond trees, mountains and let the wind whisper in my ear. Immediately felt the narratives of the previous settlers in my head, their struggles with drought and water scarcity. During my days at the residency, I consciously allowed myself to immerse in the irrational quality of inspiration. I felt the urgency to create a direct and a primitive contact with the rough, arid yet serene landscape of Los Gázquez. I wanted to investigate how it feels to temporarily settle in this raw unfathomable territory.

I wanted to explore oil pastels on paper, something that I never used before in my practice. I was hoping that I could start a new body of work with an unfamiliar material as a response to my experience of being in a new territory. I chose oil pastels for the simplicity and immediacy in its pigmentation to articulate a new gaze toward my present time and space. While working with oil pastels I discovered an alternative aspect to my painting approach; this time I started to represent the landscape through simple shapes and colors. I became interested in the sharp vivid colors of oil pastels, psychedelic cadmium yellow on a cobalt blue ground could only depict the raw organic nature of Los Gázquez for me. 

What I gained at the residency was a different pathway of thinking in my practice. The people, architecture, and nature they all planted new seeds of contemplation in me. When I left the residency I felt content and blessed. I appreciate what Donna and Simon have created for artists and I am incredibly grateful for my experience at Joya: AiR”.

Anahita Akhavan

Joya: AiR / Chia-Yen Wang / Taiwan

Chia-Yen Wang was born in Taipei, Taiwan. She received her MFA in Fine Art at Goldsmiths, University of London in London in 2016. Her works are mainly related to mixed media installation and imagery. With a background in business, visual communication, and lighting design, she likes to place her focus on the vague area among design, art for the general public, and fine art in a world of capitalism. While attempting to explore the visual sense of aesthetics which are loved by the general public, her works also examine the relationship between space and surrounding objects, as well as the language embedded into them. These designed and selected materials, along with the final products form a variety of visual symbols which in turn, represent the meaning and status hidden in the structure of our social, economic, and cultural realm. 

Currently, she is working on the objects that come from construction sites, and lighting projects related to power structures and authority. Her approach is both layered and expansive, with individual elements of the work emerging in an ambiguous manner. She is attempting to construct a microcosm while decoding the strategy and meaning of the visual symbols behind social spectacle in modern cities and urban spaces.

Joya: AiR / Gerardo Tirapegui Flores / Chile

"En el período en que fui residente de Joya: Air, pude reflexionar estéticamente sobre la práctica artística que he venido realizando, la cual se desenvuelve desde los nuevos medios, en torno a los contenidos de identidad cultural y territorio. En un tiempo y espacio que estuvo completamente en función de mi proceso creativo, —en oposición con la alienación propia del hombre de sus valores espirituales en las grandes ciudades, de la que soy parte— disfruté registrando y experimentando en los esculturales y calmos paisajes del parque natural Sierra de María-Los Vélez, que me permitieron vislumbrar potenciales líneas de trabajo.

Compartí experiencias con artistas de diferentes culturas, en donde surgieron diálogos en torno a la actividad creativa, sus diferencias disciplinares, las realidades sociales, políticas y económicas de cada uno, que sin duda aporta a las búsquedas autorales que realizó. Me sentí estimulado observando los procesos creativos individuales de los artistas, los que se fundían con los interiores y exteriores de una estancia de belleza patrimonial.

Estoy agradecido por haber sido parte de este distintivo proyecto de arte, producto de la pasión y dedicación de sus gestores Donna y Simon, quienes además de hacerse cargo sustentablemente del territorio en el que están, son unos excelentes anfitriones, presentes en todo momento a los requerimientos del artista.

Encontré en Joya: AiR, respuestas a preguntas que fueron contestadas en un ambiente de reflexión y producción, tanto en el interior como exterior del inmueble que nos residió, entre bosques, sierras, caminos, memoria, diálogos, reciprocidad. Y lo que es mejor, otras estimulantes cuestionantes surgieron”.

37°45'20.8"N 2°03'10.3”W

Gerardo Tirapegui Flores

Gerardo Tirapegui (Santiago, 1989) es egresado de Licenciatura en Turismo y Cultura de la Universidad de Valparaíso, Diplomado de Postítulo Producción Gráfica, Video y Fotografía de la Universidad de Chile y actualmente cursa el Magíster en Artes Mediales de la Universidad de Chile. Ha participado en instancias artísticas de exhibición, tanto colectiva como individualmente, y también interviniendo de forma instalativa el espacio público. Los intereses del artista se abocan a las relaciones entre individuo y territorio y sus intersticios. La forma de trabajar sus combinatorias, sonoras y visuales, son a través de la creación y programación de aplicaciones tecnológicas, la fractura de la imagen digital, la electrónica, el video, la utilización de microcontroladores y sensores para vincular el entorno físico con el digital. Aborda contenidos como la identidad y homogeneización cultural, la globalización, el consumismo y el territorio como contenedor de las anteriores.

Joya: AiR / writer / Bronwen Jones / UK

“The land on which Los Gázquez (Joya: AiR) sits captures the place for me. Its ashen-grey clay is impervious to rain so, when the thunderstorms come, water sluices off it, leaving imprints there like aqueous fossils. Between the rivulet echoes were my footprints. Many of them.

During my residency, I covered 223km of tracks and trails; first to escape, and then to explore. I drew satisfaction from creating those shoe-shaped marks and accepting that they would be smoothed invisible again.

When the sun comes it transforms the earth. Baking under its intensity, new marks emerge: fissures which imitate the pathways traversing the mountains.

Hours of running through this landscape have clarified my thoughts and crystallised my ideas. This land has become the foundation bolstering my existing work, and the fertile soil of fresh inspiration”.

Bronwen Jones


Bronwen Jones is writing her first novel, Murmurations, which is set in rural England and Spain in the present day. It follows the journey of two adult siblings in the year following their father’s suicide. The protagonists have a distant, fractious relationship, but are forced to co-operate when they encounter their father’s plan to draw them together and to uncover murky truths of the past. Since her residency at Joya: AiR, Bronwen has been developing a new piece of writing, Querencia, which is told in 14 episodes, each focusing on one of 14 characters over the period of a fortnight. It considers what happens when a place of supposed security and strength becomes defined instead by a lack or loss of its essential components. 

Joya: AiR / Roman Sheppard Dawson / UK

“The time to reflect and reconsider your practice is often overlooked or neglected in favour of production. While at Joya, the opportunity to slow down and pay attention to some of the natural anchors in your work cannot be underestimated. It has been a privilege to walk in the beautiful Sierra María-Los Vélez national park and to bond with a group of artists varying in creative disciplines. The type of thinking achieved here is unique and has made powerful ripples in my life.

As you allow yourself to commit to Joya’s temperament, you become aware of the detail and care that has been taken to create this experience. The subtlety of both Donna and Simon to be available and yet hidden from view allows you to safely commit to deep thinking and the ability to separate yourself from the daily routine that we are all seeking to forget.

The landscape and the people get under your skin in a way that is hard to do justice in words. It is something shared by those who have been in residence at Joya and I imagine every group who passes through has a different shade or hue that colours the landscape.

I look forward to bringing what I have discovered back into my continuing practice in London and hope to uncover elements of my practice I was not aware were going through a transformation.

Thank you”.

Roman Sheppard Dawson

Roman Sheppard Dawson is a moving image artist based in London and a Central Saint Martins graduate in fine art 4D. His work has evolved from moving image based sculptures into a practice exploring movement/gesture in the moving image and space.

Joya: AiR / Thibault Duchesne / France

“The doors of the 2000 Land Rover slammed.

All my senses needed to be readjusted as I stood in the sun - looking at that vast territory of silence.

Joya: AiR was built on an ancient farm, lost in the Sierra Maria-Los Vélez. Yet, whatever the reasons were to settle in such a hostile territory, generations had inhabited and cultivated this land. In these isolated places, inhabitants have a unique relationship with time and history, often protected from the destructive, as well as regenerative, flow of modernity.

Territories, territories, territories; I became obsessed with the idea. I was exploring the land, experiencing it in all its physicality; and allowing the flow of the mental afterimages develop within me.

I wanted the project that I was going to work on to be linked intimately to the environment in which it would be created. Almería is the only region in Western Europe considered as desert. In late August the whole landscape has been dried out under an unforgiving sun, and the presence of water is only revealed through the scars it has left in the land during the storms. The sun. Over a few days I laid papers, partially covering them with cardboard and stones. As an almost esoteric ritual, I removed shapes and stones carefully as the paper was being bleached.

I was interested in using one dimension to reveal a new one: the use of time in order to create space. Newly-opened territories emerged from the ghostly architectures that appeared on the surface. The paper returns to its primary organic nature, adopting the pigmentation of the landscape, inviting us to thread through a new space of rêverie.

As Emerson reminds us in his essay “Nature”, «In the tranquil landscape [...] man beholds somewhat as beautiful as his own nature.»

Joya: AiR is that space and time”.

Thibault Duchesne

Joya: AiR / Art for the Environment Residency / University for the Arts London / recipient Bronwyn Seier

“I came to Joya: AiR through University of the Arts London’s Art for the Environment Residency program. I am an MA student at UAL currently writing my thesis, which looks at design activism, considering how fashion can protest against overconsumption in the digital age.

As a fashion designer and academic, I do not typically see myself as an artist or allow myself the uninterrupted space to create. Prior to departing for Spain, I at some point Googled, ‘what do you do at an art residency?’. But my unpreparedness and unconventional practice did not matter once I arrived. I spent my time reading, walking, and creating in a gentle balance. I did not give myself deadlines, or where I did, I did not meet them. But this didn’t matter; because I will continue to build on the pages I filled in my sketchbook long after the residency. 

 My work is often focused on the social and environmental impacts of the fashion system. It is a daunting, often contradictory, and continually exciting realm in which to work. Yet, being at Joya gave me a clearer picture of what it means to practice environmentalism in an all-encompassing way. From the power of the wind and sun to the precious nature of every drop of water that comes through the tap. Life seems to move a little slower, yet somehow the 2 weeks I spent there seem to have gone by in an instant”. 

Bronwyn Seier

Joya: AiR / Holly Campbell / UK

“I had applied for the Joya Air residency with the intention of retreating from the busyness of life to immerse myself in nature and allow time and space to begin personal writing projects. I had never been on an artist residency before, but Joya: AiR really called to me. It’s beautiful remote and natural location, the sustainably maintained centre and welcoming, minimalist rooms – I knew I had to spend time here clear my vessel, to recharge and to create.

Arriving at Joya: AiR, I was taken aback by the immensity of the surrounding landscape. Mountains and trees rolled for miles and for as far as the eye could see. The centre was beautifully decorated in artwork. Other artists were welcoming, and Donna and Simon had been so inviting that it felt like they had given me my own home in theirs.  

My creative intention whilst spending time at the residency was to write. I had allowed myself a few days with no pressure of making or doing anything, but to simply be in the space. I connected with the other artists, listened to the diversity of their backgrounds and disciplines and spent time walking the mountains around the centre.

I realised that my artistic background was quite unconventional compared to the other creatives I had met there. I had studied BA Social Care and Education Studies before graduating from MA Media, Communications and Critical Practice. The jump in discipline was inspired by a passion for social justice, feminism and equality. After gaining a deep sociological perspective of power differentials and oppression experienced by intersectional groups during my first degree, I was charged by a drive to take meaningful action. In a year between studying the degrees, I established, a blog and collective of women that used fashion as a platform for addressing feminist issues and empowering women. I went on to study to gain insight into how I could use contemporary media as a channel for positive social change.

Until this year, my life purpose and career motivation had mapped out in a linear fashion. Yet, since being caught up in the chaos of working life, I had felt stuck without knowing which direction to take next. I know that I have to create in a way that is underlined by my passion to affect positive change. I had intended on spending my time at Joya: AiR by using the medium of writing to do this - to allow myself time to write creatively and with intention. Specifically, writing to launch a new blog project that comments on contemporary media, popular culture and feminism. However, my time at the residency served an unexpected journey for me, and a bigger and deeper purpose. Joya: AiR held a space for me to retreat and to reflect on where I had been, where I am now and where I want to go - basic reflections that my busy life had distracted me from. Conversations with like minded creatives fuelled and inspired a whole new realm of paths and possibilities that I could take to achieve my goals.

Beyond providing a studio space for me to write about my passions, Joya: AiR served an invaluable purpose, through free time and a relaxing but creative environment, that allowed me to reach clarity on my work. I have returned home from my time at the centre feeling motivated, peaceful and excited for my next endeavour (which I am keeping close to my chest until I’m ready to share with the world!)”.

Holly Campbell

Joya: AiR / Denis Mortell / Ireland

"I went to Joya: AiR with an open mind, not fully knowing what to expect. I left, after two weeks, with a heightened sense of the importance of our climate and our resources. For a short time, it was another way of living.

What I found also gave me at least one, possibly two new series of images. The breath-taking landscape, the way of life and the people I met were hugely stimulating. I walked and photographed four to five hours every day. “La Muela” (literally, “the molar” - a mountain which dominates the surrounding landscape and the local town of Vélez-Blanco) and, separately, the constant battle with and for water, were two themes I felt I couldn’t ignore.

Thanks to Donna and Simon at JOYA for making it all possible".

Denis Mortell

Denis Mortell is a fine-art and commercial photographer based in Dublin, Ireland. He is currently in the final year of an MFA Fine Art at Goldsmiths College, London, having previously completed an MA at National College Of Art and Design, Dublin and History of Art at University College Dublin. He has exhibited at Irish Architectural Archive, Dublin (solo) NCAD, Dublin (group) Kamera8, Wexford (group) and Tenderpixel Gallery, London (group)

Joya: AiR / writer in residence / Onur Can Tepe / Turkey

“During my residency at Joya: AiR, I have had the opportunity to concentrate on my writing project for long hours next to meeting and engaging with people from all kinds of backgrounds. I have worked on creating the outline for a story that explores the potential impacts of mass tourism in an island at the Aegean sea in 32 years from now. Joya: AiR, being a totally off-grid, ecological art project, provided some "food for thought" for reflecting on the topic I was working on. It was productive and rather stimulating to be in the nature of Los Gázquez and in the company of lovely hosts Simon and Donna".


Onur Can Tepe is a Rotterdam based architect who has worked on the design of numerous, award winning buildings, interiors and urban plans. He is interested in buildings as cultural projects that engage with the ecology and community around it. Since 2016 he has been writing Letters from 2050: a compilation of fictional, short stories about future. Through his writing practice, he investigates contemporary themes such as climate change, social polarisation, and technological disruptions through the lens of one generation later.

Onur Can Tepe

Architect  DUS Architects 

Writer, Director  Letters from 2050

Joya: AiR / Michaela Putz / Austria

"I came to Joya: AiR to find a calm place, surrounded by a rural and natural environment, to go on working on a very intimate and personal project. Staying here, it was what I had expected – and yet so much more than that. Not only did the wonderful off-grid house in the rural landscape of Andalusia help me to focus on my work, but the lovely atmosphere that Simon and Donna created here made me feel very welcome and able to push a reset button. The mix of a lot of private space and communal areas, which made a constant exchange with them and the other artists from various countries and disciplines possible, built the perfect setting to develop a new photographic series as well as a to create lot of interesting and inspiring encounters underneath the starry sky of Southern Spain".


Michaela Putz .


Born 1984, lives and works in Vienna. Michaela Putz studied Art & Science at the University of Applied Art and Communication and Political Science in Vienna. In her works, she is interested in the self-image of humans in times of ongoing virtualization. She examines the reflections on the surfaces of contemporary communication technology, searching for the contrast between the warm and alive human bodies leaving stains of fat and dirt on the sleek and cool surfaces of the screens. In her photographic works, she captures and transforms the smudged traces we leave on those screen through our bodily interaction with these machines. Through the reflections, layers are being added to create images of mystical black mirrors. Her works have been exhibited in various shows, exhibitions include: Künstlerhaus Wien, WUK, Angewandte Innovation Lab (AIL), VBKÖ, Blütengasse 9, BETON7 in Athens (Athens Photo Festival 2018) and Showroom Ruby Marie in Vienna. She received grants from the University of Applied Arts in Vienna and the International Summer Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna.


Michaela Putz is member of the collective 280A Artspace

Selected works are available at

Simon Beckmann
Joya: AiR / poet in residence / James Capozzi / USA

"Los Gazquez has real magic, deep rhythms that reach back and forward in time. The turbine hums, a breeze moves wasps around a shrub, the sun goes into the canyon. 

Or, the goat freaks out as a purple cloud, having covered the fire tower’s far-off light, arrives and starts dumping rain. Yordi pops a beer. The sun reappears and it changes.

 And so on. Though I kept a steady routine during my stay, the days were radically different, moment to moment, one from the next. The book I wrote at Joya, I think, is a record of that.

 In any case I am forever grateful to Donna and Simon for hosting me. What a wonderful privilege to have been."

James Capozzi is the author of Country Album (Parlor Press), which won the New Measure Poetry Prize, and Devious Sentiments (Finishing Line Press, 2019). His poems have appeared in Poetry, The New Republic, and  The Iowa Review, and he's been an artist in residence at Benaco Arte, the Vermont Studio Center, and the Woodstock Byrdcliffe Guild. He lives in New Jersey, where he edits the Journal of New Jersey Poets.

Joya: AiR / Anna Kushnerova / Russia

"Sitting at the bottom of a dried up creek for a few days makes the time slower, then you start to listen and hear.. the cracking of the earth, the crumbling of the dust.. water content transpiring from the pores of the rock..

At first all nature seems to screech from thirst but once a few dusks have crawled through my hyletic sensing and the inner content starts to thin out, calmness sets in, it feels like if you had a chewing gum you could rub it in into the scorched air and keep rolling it into a ball of birth that would turn wet like birth is;

so it starts not to matter if its dry or humid, water or dust (exteroception merges with interoception in intersensory unity) its calm and self-initiating, pre-intentional.

Only occasional flies stand out from the homogenous protentional horizon...

Where are the other living sensory amplifiers of the ecosystem? No creatures around.. have they been choked by the chemical vapours and rendered themselves to dust, sprinkling the creek bed under the Shadow of the Kingdom of Almond?

Do almonds cross pollinate (i wonder)? We probably did - living together in concreted cells, drinking the nectars of the wine under the stars, chewing on the tomato tart".

Anna Kushnerova

Anna Kushnerova of Siberian roots, Belgian artist, currently living and working in NSW, Australia.  Her work extends to mediums of sculpture, video and performance. She began her practice as an artist at the Fine Arts Academy in Antwerp, Belgium in 2007. In 2009, Anna founded a non-for-profit platform RA in Antwerp (Belgium) and Paris (France) to support emerging talent in multiple disciplines: art, performance, design. Since 2013, she has concentrated on her own body of work, drawing inspiration from natural and indigenous environments, science and mysticism. Anna produced, directed and curated numerous art exhibitions and performances, including a performance at Art Basel.

Simon Beckmann
Joya: AiR / Yordi Vieyte / Chile


"Primero que todo agradezco a Donna y Simon por permitirme ser parte de esta gran familia/comunidad llamada Joya.

Joya: AiR es mucho más que una residencia artística. Joya: AiR es un estilo de vida, un concepto, una metodología que se inserta en el territorio como una aguja de acupuntura que permite sanar tanto a nuestro entorno como nuestra alma.

La estratégica planificación territorial con la que cuenta esta residencia ecológica se relaciona esplendidamente con el paisaje, respetando y conservando el patrimonio tangible e intangible del Parque Natural Sierra Nevada y sus alrededores. Lo que aporta consciente o inconscientemente al fortalecimiento de la identidad española y su basta historia.

La residencia, los estudios y la arquitectura en general dialogan perfectamente con el genio del lugar (GENIUS LOCI) Siendo este un refugio pacifico de experiencias, reflexión, creación, e introspección que recomiendo sin duda alguna.

Muchísimas gracias Donna y Simón por hacernos sentir cómodos y plenos, por alimentarnos exquisitamente y por sobre todo ser un ejemplo de vida en este mundo. Cuenten con mi apoyo y mucha suerte en todo lo venidero".


"First of all, I thank Donna and Simon for allowing me to be part of this great family / community called Joya.

Joya: AiR is much more than an artistic residence. Joya: AiR is a lifestyle, a concept, a methodology that is inserted into the territory like an acupuncture needle that allows us to heal both our environment and our soul.

The strategic territorial planning of this ecological residence is splendidly related to the landscape, respecting and preserving the tangible and intangible heritage of the Sierra Nevada Natural Park and its surroundings. What contributes consciously or unconsciously to the strengthening of the Spanish identity and its vast history.

The residence, studios and architecture in general dialogue perfectly with the genius of the place (GENIUS LOCI) Being this, a peaceful refuge of experiences, reflection, creation, and introspection that I recommend without any doubt. 

Thank you very much Donna and Simon for making us feel comfortable and full, for feeding us exquisitely and above all being an example of life in this world. Count on my support and good luck in everything to come".


Yordi Vieyte