April 16, 2014:

Dear friends –

We write to you during this season of change, awakening, and growth — a time when, previously, we would be announcing our upcoming artists-in-residence — in order to share some news about big changes of our own. We three founders have decided to dissolve PLAND, liberating its formal organizational structure and allowing for new growth in other areas of art and life.

Since the first days of PLAND, when we looked at our scrappy piece of land and saw in it the potential to grow and nurture our alternative version of The American Dream, we spoke of PLAND as an experiment, a way to learn how to live in a place. We recognized it as a sketch for larger projects to come, and an experimental process more than a final product. And, because nothing happens instantaneously out on the mesa (except, perhaps, a rain storm or dust devil), we settled into a three to five year time frame during which we anticipated that our experiment would reveal its true nature. In these uncertain early stages, we needed your support and you gave it to us, generously.

After that first year, we were exhilarated, entrenched, committed. The “true nature ” of PLAND begged that we uproot our lives and move off grid, relocating to the project site — and so we did. Longing to create something but having very few resources, we put ourselves into PLAND, entirely. We lived without running water or electricity for the most prolonged period of our lives. We enlisted our residents, visitors, and our own hands and minds to create a unique place. We learned and tried and failed, and repeated the process, all the while energized and encouraged by the unwavering support of people like you.

After the first two years, PLAND experienced such incredible growth that it required concerted efforts to honor “doability” in our lives, our responsibilities, and our relationships within and beyond the project. In the seasons that followed, we scaled back our programs and events, trying to balance the momentum PLAND was generating for each of us, both personally and professionally — an unexpected, if not awkward, problem to encounter. Still, you supported us.

In 2013, we focused our energies on our Special Projects Program, under which Jesse Vogler continued his research of boundaries, maps, and the land use history of the area, preparing a forthcoming PLAND field guide, funded by the Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts. We also concentrated our Residency Program to invite one artist-duo, Albuquerque-based artists Nina Dubois and Eso Robinson, who designed and built a much-need staircase in the Main House; they also combined their organizational skills to bring order to the chaos of PLAND’s many piles of materials and half-finished projects. Our promotional outlets included brief articles about PLAND in edible Santa Fe and Ecosource.

Through all of this, it has only been because of your support that we were able to grow PLAND into what it is today: a finite experiment with infinite, undeniable outcomes. Today, the project’s physical nature is comprised of an impressive house that, even in mid-construction, can withstand the harsh elements of Tres Piedras; a 1500 gallon cistern and water catchment system; a beautiful adobe sauna that induces relaxation and rejuvenation; a comfortable trailer that can shelter and sleep up to five people; a beautiful handbuilt outhouse, complete with our infamous Humanure Hacienda, and so much more.

In the winter of 2013, we three woman retreated for a weekend together in the mountains — away from PLAND and our daily lives, which had now grown miles away from the site itself. We reflected on our last four years of collaboration, confirmed our care, appreciation, and respect for each other and the project, and expressed our visions for the future. Ultimately, we came to the difficult conclusion that, even amidst all the support and encouragement, it was time to wrap up the process-based experiment of PLAND.

Photo credit: Jaime C. Knight, “Out of Place With Punctuality and Precision,” photogravure, 2012. View from interior of the PLAND site.

By the end of 2014, we will officially dissolve the formal organization. Our website will exist as an archive, we are properly documenting and caring for the remnants the resident’s projects, the land and its amenities remain in tact. As always, we are open to your ideas and questions concerning the next phase.

It is an emotional time of discovery for each of us three PLAND ladies, as we dig deep to sort through feelings of gratitude, accomplishment, failure, longing, uncertainty. But we’re actually excited about allowing our creation to be temporary, to expire, and it is important for us to communicate to you that our decision was not based in conflict. How awesome this time in our lives has been, how it has molded us and carried us to new and curious places.

We can truly say that it is because of you that PLAND was possible. Hear us as we stand on our re-purposed rooftop, above piles of donated and reclaimed materials, looking out across the sagebrush towards the mountains, shouting “THANK YOU!” for your support in all its forms over the last several years. Take note as, in our day-to-day lives, we express gratitude for this priceless experience that you have made possible. Join us as we embody the philosophies of PLAND in a world focused on consumerism and conventional success.

May the experimental, resourceful, gritty, tenacious, weird, far-fetched, and brave spirit live long in all of us.

Here’s to liberation,
Erin, Nina, and Nancy


A Work Party is Being PLAND!

August 1 – 5, 2012

It’s like a good old-fashioned barn-raising. Camp on-site, share meals, learn alternative building methods, meet cool people, and be part of PLAND. Come for one, several, or all five days.

Work plan for the Main House includes: Making adobe bottle walls, installing a second story, constructing a tool shed and enclosed porch. …plus hiking in Carson National Forest, a night-time visit to the hot springs, and more!

For more details and to
RSVP by July 25th:


PLAND logo bumper stickers are in! Only $8.00 each
(Includes shipping. All proceeds go to Residency and Building Programs).
Email us
for purchase details.


Fieldwork Marfa Symposium
“Fieldwork and Land Use” Presenters
Crowley Theater

March 14 & 15, 2012
10:45 am


Call for Power: Gridlocked residency proposals as part of ISEA2012 Albuquerque: Machine Wilderness, organized by 516 ARTS

Deadline: October 15, 2011


Hand in Glove
Unconventional Residency Programs panel participants
Friday, October 21



Open Engagement
“Inbetween Spaces” discussion participants about broad themes of residency
Sunday, May 15


Bad at Sports
Audio Interview
February 2011
Hilarity ensues and useful information abounds.


“What is PLAND?”
An informational event about PLAND and its many programs and activities, including The Summer of Alternative Power.

Wired Coffee Cyber Café, 705 Felicidad Lane, Taos, NM 87571
Sunday, February 13, 2011

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