Don't Rag on Ragdale | Letters | Chicago Reader

Don't Rag on Ragdale 

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To the editor:

Gina Frangello's "Room With No View" [November 15] may be an accurate portrait of one artist, but it misrepresents the Ragdale Foundation. I've been there four times. The prison atmosphere she exploits for humor is a figment of her imagination. Most residency programs (including the renowned MacDowell and Yaddo) can inflict the "hardships" of single beds, shared bathrooms, nonergonomic furniture, and quirky social dynamics. Some even neglect to serve residents' favorite foods. The room Frangello had at Ragdale can be hot and a bit noisy. Hardly the stuff of disaster or drama--even if one couldn't adjust the radiator and buy a white noise machine.

Ragdale is a fine residency program. The living and working spaces are very comfortable (lavishly appointed, in comparison with other communities). The staff is devoted and skilled in providing a supportive space for creative work. What residents do with that is up to them.

Laboring constantly to secure private funding, organizations such as Ragdale provide havens for artists in an era of almost nonexistent public support.

Tacey A. Rosolowski

Rogers Park

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