The Pony Farm – A sustainable haven for inspiration and growth
In 2016 my partner Maxime and I purchased a dilapidated farm in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada’s. Once an art commune and general store, the property had been neglected for over ten years, and provided the us with three wood cabins, one warehouse, and two acres of bare land looking out atop a hill on the the Mokelumne Wilderness. The property was in desperate need of loving caretakers, and in this property we saw limitless possibilities in how we could benefit our community.
From the moment we were handed keys, there was a strict open door policy when it came to wary travelers. Though isolated in the unincorporated forests of California, the homestead consistently remained warm and full of life, with it’s walls full of lively conversation, and inspiration. Whoever came to visit remained as long as they could to envelope in themselves the surreal truths that came with a deeper understanding of nature. Gathering around a fire in early spring, or meandering a lazy river in late summer, the farm with its overflowing gardens, and the Mother Lode with its trove of hidden gems, seemed to draw visitors back, always inspiring them to contribute to the experience with their own hands.
As a practicing artist and farmer, I have found that there is nothing more gratifying than reuniting an artist’s soul with the complexities of our natural world. This feeling is amplified when met with the understanding that many artists from the major cities are often deprived of this relationship all together. While one could point to scientific studies, it is my belief that we all share a similar understanding in this very simple need that is so often unmet in our modern world. We all need nature in our lives, but artists are nature’s truest champions, and must always act as her agent.
For these reasons, the Pony Farm Project focuses it’s perma-culture goals in not only being a completely self-sustaining, closed system- but also in being completely transparent in the science and cottage knowledge needed to deepen our natural relationships. We not only offer year-round farm stays through airbnb, but also host a bi-annual residency for artists. The Pony Farm Project Residency aims to provide inner-city and road-bound artists with a holistic environment in nature to work, while also providing knowledge and workshops to provide them with environmental tools they can bring home with them.
The Pony Farm Project is so much more than a permaculture farm or artist residency. The Pony Farm exists as a test-kitchen for a more sustainable future, providing all who visit, a broader opportunity to imagine what could be.
Director and Co-Owner