KAMEN is located in a rural area of Orah, a village that is home to just a few families and a 14th century Orthodox monastery. The residency building overlooks Bileća lake, which was artificially formed in 1968. When the lake was constructed to provide hydroelectric power to the region, five villages were flooded, including even the remains of a Roman villa complete with floor mosaics. In the summertime, when the water level lowers, these ruins appear and it becomes possible to stroll through a sunken past. Two small islands in the center of the lake can then be reached on foot.
From our terrace, we see the sun and moon rise from behind the mountains. At KAMEN, in our day-to-day, we live with what the season brings us. Not only is for instance the water-level a marker of the seasonal changes, also in terms of what grows in our garden and the cultural responses to the seasons; we allow the time of the year to set the scene.
In the region is filled with impressive ancient sites, architectural remnants from different historical ages, points of interest from recent history, dam projects, mountains, a few small stone towns, cultural ceremonies, natural parks, caves, sinkholes, and underground rivers to explore. As well it is easy to visit restaurants, café’s, shops and city life in for instance the nearby city of Trebinje. We are near both the Montenegrin and Croatian border.
At KAMEN, we foster a communal ecology that is intimately connected to life in the region. The residency is focused on creating self-sustaining and regenerative circumstances for the community and landscape in which we are situated.
Our orchard and vegetable garden bear an abundance of produce, from which we eat daily and enjoy making preserves, compotes, liquors etc. Aside from what we grow, much of our food is purchased from local vendors.
Orah, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Google Maps coordinates 42.815860, 18.417979
KAMEN assists residents in making meaningful connections and engaging in intercultural collaborations with our diverse network of partners, collaborators and contacts, as appropriate to each resident’s particular interests.
Among our growing network of local constituencies, cultural institutions, art associations and scientific/research projects are: Gallery KC in Trebinje, which houses gallery spaces, a theatre stage and cinema on multiple floors; the Academy of Fine Arts; the Museum of Herzegovina and its team of anthropologists, ethnologists and archeologists; the Devon Karst Research Society, which has been collecting data on the region’s underground cave structures and its endemic species for over twenty years.
As well, we work with several smaller associations such as traditional craft practitioners (weaving, crochet, embroidery), singers, dancers, musical instrument builders, and more.
Residents are encouraged to engage or collaborate with these local communities, organizations, ecosystems and what they offer, in whichever way is pertinent to their project.