Checking out the new artist studios on Fogo Island
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Fogo Island is undergoing an interesting experiment spearheaded by the Shorefast Foundation, which is trying to promote the social, cultural and economic regeneration of the area. From the development of a new inn slated to open in 2012 to new artist studios dotted around the island, Fogo has suddenly been put on the radar as a place where new things are happening. So we decided to have a look at the artist studios through a tour put on by the Fogo Island Arts Corporation .
So far, four studios have been built. Each one is located outside the nearby community along a trail that takes anywhere from 10-20 minutes to hike, and each studio has a very different look. They have hints of traditional architecture (many are built on posts to simulate fishing stages), but they also have a strong Scandinavian influence. As you can see from the attached photos, they look very different from anything you would normally see in Newfoundland. We visited 4 studios: the Bridge, Tower, Long and Squish. My favourite setting was the Squish Studio in Tilting which has been placed on a craggy shore with a view to the open North Atlantic. The tour, led by Peter Decker, is well worth doing not only to see the studios but to see the different communities in which they are located. The tour takes around 4 hours and starts at 1:00-1:30 pm from the Shoal Bay Church. For more information and to book contact: www.artscorpfogoisland.ca.
After our tour we headed to Nicole’s Café which had come highly recommended by almost everyone we met. The setting is relaxed and for dinner we enjoyed fresh seafood (from crab legs to cod) and had a delicious partridgeberry tart with ice cream for dessert. This place is popular so you might want to make a reservation for dinner (http://www.nicolescafe.ca/).