My name is Dan Cameron, and I'm raising funds for the wonderful folks who run Comarca Contuy on the Chilean island of Chiloé. The site is in the rural sector of Queilen, which lies between the port towns of Chonchi and Quellon, and it was purchased by a family of artists who wanted to flee the rat race in Santiago and establish an arts community in a place where they could make art and live closer to nature. I first visited Comarca Contuy in 2018, and liked it so much I returned for a stay in their treehouse Airbnb in 2019, and did the same again last month.
Speakering to co-founder Pablo Carvacho in his well-equipped photo darkroom last month, I learned about the difficulties in realizing the project closest to his heart, which was to restore and renovate the 200-year-old abandoned chapel in front of their property, and transform it into an exhibition space that could be utilized by local artists as well as curators like myself. The underlying idea is that children who attend the local rural schools don't actually take art classes, nor do local artisans have a way of sharing their work outside of conventional markets, but if a space opened up that allowed for different kinds of programs to be presented throughout the year, an important link would be established & maintained between the arts and the community.
The estimated budget to create architectural drawings, restore, upgrade and weatherproof the building, along with the necessary touches to turn it into an exhibition space, is $12,500, and the financial goal here includes a $2,500 contingency for overruns. While in Chile it's a pretty straighforward process to get public funding for programming at a space like this, actually getting it open is comparatively difficult. As a professional NYC-based curator who's made five separate research trips to Chiloé since 2014, I feel like this is a case in which a comparatively modest sum raised like this can have an enormous impact on the future for the arts in this tucked-away corner of Chile.