You Can Be My Wingman

a retreat for artists, by artists

Iceman : You can be my wingman any time.
Maverick : Bullshit. You can be mine.

Top Gun (1986)

You Can Be My Wingman is back for 2022! YCBMW is a week-long, hosted retreat for artists, produced by Action Hero, supported by Dartington Trust, and with mentoring from German artist Britt Hatzius. YCBMW will bring together mid-career performance makers to explore new collaborative processes in a supported, friendly, and restful environment. The retreat will run 12-18 Feb, 2022.

The retreat is aimed at facilitating new collaborations between artists who may know each others’ work and practice, but who have never worked together before. It’s for artists who have always wanted to work together but have never found the time. The week is hosted by Action Hero, with mentoring from an established international artist. In 2022, the artist is Britt Hatzius.

Artists are invited to apply together to spend a week exploring an area of mutual interest; a point of crossover in their respective practices, a desire to work together on a shared process, or even just a conversation they both want to have. The focus of the retreat is simply to explore new territories in a self-led and non-pressurized way, with no prescribed outcome. Think of it like a ‘spa week’ for your practice.

View the full call out for details of how to apply attached. An audio version is here.

The deadline for applications is 5pm, Monday 13th December 2021.


Previous Editions of YCBMW

In our first year running the retreat, we were delighted to receive applications from almost 60 artists. The artists that joined us in Feb 2020 were:

Sue MacLaine and Hannah Ringham
Dan Canham and Caroline Williams
Vera Chok and Tanuja Amarasuriya
Liz Crow and Raquel Meseguer
Chloé Déchery and Karen Christopher

The international mentor was Canadian artist, Maiko Yamamoto. We made a zine about the week, you can see it here.

In 2021 in response to Covid restrictions, we reconfigured the residency as Ways To Begin Again,  residency for artists who had been unable to meet during the past year, due to Covid-19.

The Ways To Begin Again participants were:

Yasmin Begum and Saqib Dehkmush
Gwen Thompson and Gwen Hales

They received daily video provocations from artists Katherine Hall, Maiko Yamamoto, Gbolohan Obisesan, Rhiannon Armstrong and Sue MacLaine.

YCBMW is designed to provide a much needed sanctuary for mid-career artists to explore and experiment together without the pressure to produce an outcome or to show something publicly. It’s also an ‘artist-only’ space, with no sense of work or ideas being auditioned for potential future opportunities. These kinds of spaces are rare and, in our experience, completely invaluable for developing and nourishing an artistic practice.