Alumnus Eric Seritella


What an amazing time I just had at Monte Azul Center for the Arts. It was the most freedom I have ever had to create at any residency.

I had high expectations based on the website, and especially on the testimonials of artists who had been there before me. Still, I couldn’t believe how attentive Carlos and Randy were to my creative and daily needs. I had nothing to do but explore their jungles, search my creative depths, and create in the moment as my muses took hold. What a gift! And while I love the interplay of working amongst other artists, I was amazingly appreciative of not being surrounded by other energies. I was free just creatively to be me.

From the moment of arrival, I felt at peace there in the incredible new studio space along the river, amongst the trees and birds. The guys working diligently on the addition of the second phase of this spectacular added to my inspiration and encouraged me to produce even more. I felt comfortable doing whatever I wanted, creatively or otherwise, without judgment or critique. They’ve provided an incomparable creative environment, demonstrated their genuine love for hosting artists there, and strive to meet as many needs as possible. I felt liberated to be inspired, grow…and make.

And then there’s the food… my gosh the food! Fresh tropical fruits and other ingredients sourced nearby were incorporated into simple, flavorful, and nutritious meals of hearty breakfasts, and sumptuous midday, and evening meals, complete with whatever beverage I wanted, from spring water to soda and libations. Add that to the great living quarters surrounded by the sights and sounds of the rainforest, and I couldn’t ask for more from a residency.

Monte Azul is this creative’s Eden. I’m already figuring out how to return. I cannot wait to be there again.

Serritella has exhibited alongside artists like de Kooning, Picasso, and Voulkos. His work is found in museum collections that include, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Carnegie Museum of Art, Mint Museum, and the James Renwick Alliance honored him as the Distinguished Artist in ceramics at the Smithsonian American Art Museum.