Yaddo Rising: Mansion Returns

June 15, 2019

Ladies and gentlemen, ghosts, children of the arts—we did it! Yaddo is reborn again, and we offer a galactic thank you for all your support in helping us restore our historic Mansion—the architectural jewel, public face, creative hub, artistic sanctuary, refuge for the world’s leading minds, and yes, the soul of Yaddo.

It wasn’t easy: It took an unprecedented $7.6 million investment, 18 months of Mansion closure and construction; a carapace of specially engineered scaffolding; rehabbing all fixtures, including our iconic weathervane; fixing 756 window sashes in 338 windows; sealing our exterior envelope with 15 tons of mortar; a new roof; stabilizing the porte cochère—a magical feat of modern engineering; adding six new bathrooms; and upgrading our entire electrical and HVAC system, among other triumphs.

What else? We’ve given Yaddo a sustainable future; now it will be here for another century. Plus, with our other updated facilities and new live-work studios, we stand to increase the number of artists we host annually by about 25 percent, up to 270 guests each year.

In June, we welcomed the public back to the Mansion for our annual Yaddo Summer Benefit. More than 375 guests celebrated the party of the season with special guest Mike Doughty; together we raised just shy of $190,000 for our residency program. The celebration will continue at our Yaddo Gala in New York City on October 3.

With this big facilities lift behind us, we’re now focused on a matter of equal urgency—access to Yaddo. We know the need for space, quiet and community is more important than ever and we are working hard to make sure that writers and artists who are invited here can actually take us up on that gift. Thanks to an inspired gift from Musa and Tom Mayer, along with others, we will offer more Access Grants to help defray such expenses as travel, childcare, lost income and supplies, and do all we can to ensure that a diverse range of the world’s most exceptional artists have a seat at our table.

Now… reporting live: Our summer season is in full swing, with poets, sculptors, composers, filmmakers, painters, writers, graphic novelists, performers and more, all here to “augment the sacred fire within,” as Spencer and Katrina Trask put it in 1900.

Artists have returned in full force to the Mansion!

—From Yaddo News Summer 2019. Read the full newsletter here.