As a part of our non-interview research for these next few weeks, I have been and will continue to be making calls to art colonies, schools, and festivals that David attended/visited/taught at.
Last Thursday, I made a few calls to some art colonies to find out the dates when David had his residencies. All of them have been supremely helpful, for which I’m very thankful. MacDowell was able to read me the dates over the phone, which was fantastic. David visited 18 times from 1965 to 1998, sometimes visiting multiple times a year. MacDowell was, in fact, the first colony that David visited, and he did so nearly every year, until he was told that there was a lifetime limit of 10 visits. That policy has since changed, but it caused him to start visiting Yaddo regularly. Yaddo emailed me a list of David’s 25 (!) visits, which spanned from 1970 to 2005. The Virginia Center for the Creative Arts will be emailing me their list soon, as well. Then, I’ll be calling Bellagio, Bogliasco, and the American Academy in Rome.
The list of dates I currently have, though, has been a major help in plotting out a timeline of David’s life, and in illuminating his creative habits. It’s also raised a few questions. There’s the distinct possibility that I misheard or misnoted a particular date from MacDowell (the most reasonable assumption that I’ll be following up on next week), because otherwise, he was scheduled at both Yaddo and MacDowell for a period of a month in 1975. While, yes, he was certainly rushing to finish Final Alice at the time, surely he didn’t book himself in two places at once to write it faster!
Both Yaddo and MacDowell have also offered a considerable amount of additional information that I’ll definitely be availing myself of later this Summer. In the meantime, thanks so much to everyone that’s helped so far!
After the colony research will come school research: dates of employment, courses taught, academic calendars, etc.