Visitor Center Artist Camp is a near-wilderness artist residency site in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. We seek to combine wilderness living and resourcefulness with a contemporary art making practice and a conversation around self-sufficiency and collaboration. Our goal is to promote creativity and ingenuity through experimentation, skill sharing, and instructor-supported sculpture facilities, with art-making practices influenced by the natural environment and focused on local materials and accessible processes. We encourage new perspectives through do-it-yourself practices, collaborative design, and a discussion of sustainability in art and in life. Artists from around the country are coming to Ewen to make art, exchange ideas, examine sustainability, and get to know the vibrant and resourceful community in the Upper Peninsula. 

In 2017, Art Shape Mammoth hosted Finnish artist Mari Mathlin in the US as a resident at the Visitor Center Artist Camp, as well as for a solo exhibition in Minneapolis, MN. Video by Giraffe-a-scope.


Using simple tools and mostly handmade equipment, we are teaching and learning as we build community and explore our passions. We dig our own clay from the ground, hand-process it and formulate simple clay bodies, sculpt, and fire it on site. We work with local homesteader, saw mill operator and timber-framing expert Mel Seeger, who built his own sawmill from a Mac truck, and from whom resident artists can learn milling, building, and a variety of homesteading techniques. Previous years’ artists have also cast recycled aluminum into molds made from the local clay, created site-specific installations in the forest, travelled the area capturing photographs of the old mining and logging towns nearby, made their own traditional Finnish-style beer, worked on video projects, and painted images of the inspiring landscape of the UP.

The Visitor Center Artist Camp

...is a passion-project of Art Shape Mammoth!

We are a 501(c)3 non-profit organization committed to connecting artists to new communities, and supporting the development of artistic practice, dialogue, education, and research, through creative public exchange.

Learn more about Art Shape Mammoth here!