The Domiciles Project is a public art project founded and created by artist Alan B. Tuttle. Its primary goal is to inspire creativity in people of all ages and backgrounds. Using a panoply of doors as his canvas Tuttle creates images within paint “spilled” upon the door. Each image—at least one on each side of the door-- depicts a different vignette of the life that may have been lived behind it. Currently twelve double sided doors have been painted. When the project is complete, there will be fifty doors with a total of one hundred images.
Almost ten years ago Alan B. Tuttle acquired two old wooden doors from an antique shop. He loaded them into his pick-up and hauled them to his studio then eventually made steel bases to enable them to stand on their own so that he could walk around them, thus appreciating them from both sides. If these doors could talk, there would surely be many stories behind the layers of peeling paint, the warn corners and the hardware burnished by countless hands. Better yet, if these doors could inspire people to communicate through the written word, photography, visual, vocal or the performing arts, they could open a new world of creative expression for every individual approaching them.
Using the technique he had developed by accident a few years earlier of painting within a freeform random gesso spill, Alan began painting scenes from life as it might have been lived behind the door. These fragments are personal visions of how he views the door’s suggestion of the past and not intended to dictate to others how they should see how life might have been lived behind the door. His spill paintings--at least one on each side of each door--serve only as inspiration by example--an initiation of the process not a premise and not an invitation to critique the spill painting itself.
The Domiciles Project as it is aptly named was born from the gestation of many sleepless nights during which Alan explored and examined the ways in which his doors might be opened to introduce everyday people and students to reinvent the essence of reading and writing in its universe of forms.
Domicile n. Latin: domicilium from domus. 15th century.
A dwelling place, place of residence. Home.
THE REHOBOTH ART LEAGUE DOMICILES PROJECT: A PARTNERSHIP TO INTRODUCE AND INITIATE THE PROGRAM THROUGH PILOTS IN PUBLIC SCHOOLS
In 2011 Alan B. Tuttle convinced the venerable Rehoboth Art League, Rehoboth Beach, Delaware, to partner with him in presenting “The Rehoboth Art League Domiciles Project” at two area school districts as the first of several pilots to test his objective of inspiring people to write in depth, with eloquence and style, as opposed to the abbreviated jargon characteristic of vehicles such as email, texting, twitter and similar message conveyances that have all but obliterated and dehumanized the writer’s thoughts behind the words.
The mission of The Rehoboth Art League is to “Teach, Inspire and Preserve”. An ideal fit for the goals of The Domiciles Project. RAL has established “The Rehoboth Art League Domiciles Fund” so that individuals, businesses, organizations and corporations can make tax deductible contributions to help share the expense of bringing this program to students, teachers and the general public. It is hoped that this partnership will showcase and promote the role of art in our lives while underscoring the many benefits and opportunities available to our local community through affiliation with The Rehoboth Art League.
The results of these and future pilots will help the public education sector participants determine what tools teachers find most relevant for their classrooms and what parameters should be used to guide students as they become engaged in the creative process at a new and stimulating level.
Already the first two pilots have inspired increased creativity on behalf of the participants, and as a result, the objectives of the project have been expanded beyond English departments to include the Visual and Performing Arts. Martha Pfeiffer’s Theater classes at Cape Henlopen High School, Lewes, Delaware, created monologues based on the imagined occupants of selected domiciles and her Dance & Movement classes responded remarkably to the challenge of interpreting domicile lives through choreographing modern dance presentations. Colleen Lowe’s Art classes poured their own spills on masonite and painted within them to draw attention to relevant social issues. These examples are just the beginning of a concept that has the potential to become a widespread movement in the critical arena of communication as an art form and forum.
Over the next few years Alan Tuttle will focus on creating unique paintings for both sides of fifty doors. When these doors are complete it is anticipated that through corporate and private sector sponsorship they will be displayed at shopping malls across the country, thereby engaging large segments of the population who may not otherwise encounter art in their daily lives. Imagine the potential for creative thought and interaction.
In addition to direct exposure through public presentations of actual doors, many school districts and educational institutions may initiate their own internet based programs using The Domiciles Project site as the resource for door images, subsequently enabling them to share their participants’ completed works with the on line public.
Use our CONTACT FORM to stay up to date on new doors, selected stories, special offerings and promotions, book releases, The Artist’s Notes (an occasional mailing introducing other new works by the artist).
As we begin to embrace the larger vision of this project it is critical that we build a team of private and corporate sponsors to offset the expenses of bringing this program to the public. Less funding is needed for the pilot programs but all donations toward our endeavors are appreciated. As we proceed, we will recognize sponsors on this website and other media. If you are interested in becoming a patron, click PARTICIPATE.