Yaddo colony


An artist colony retreat in Saratoga Springs, New York, it was housed in a 55 room mansion on nearly 400 acres of land, and described as "something like a swanky monastery." It was founded in 1900 by financier Spencer Trask and his poet wife, Katrina Trask. Their written purposes included long-range goals of creating "a practical force in the world for all time. . . .a permanent home for a select group of men and women chosen for their good and honest work." From 1926, the first official season, to 1969, Elizabeth Ames was the Director and 'housemother'. She became a self-assigned chaperone who sent guiding behavior notes to some of the residents. Still in operation in the 21st century and adhering to the same schedule of its inception, Yaddo has enforced quiet, meaning isolated time from 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM and after 10:00 PM. Nearly 5000 writers, composers and visual artists have spent time there. During World War II, it was also a sanctuary for creative persons fleeing the Nazis. Among the visual art residents have been Jacob Lawrence, Martin Puryear, Marion Greenwood, Alice Baber, Clifford Still and Philip Guston. Source: Emma Allen, 'Making Art and Mischief---ARTTALK', "ARTnews", October 2008, p. 44 (LPD)