Help us run a self-sufficient creative centre in the Vienne Valley, France




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 Min stay requested: at least 1 month

  • Description


    We are a not-for-profit arts organization, offering ceramics courses and retreats which supports a range of other events and activities. Most importantly we are a refuge for makers and thinkers, surrounded by outstanding natural beauty but less than an hour from the major cities of Limoges and Poitiers.

    Some of the questions we seek to answer include:

    Can a building have its own economy?
    Can it be somewhere that both supports, and is supported by, people?
    Can individual dreams be fulfilled as well as collective ones?
    Can a place facilitate healing and growth but remain free of clichés and trends, whilst also exploring making and doing as a democratic act?

    We think that all of this is possible and we would love to hear from people who would like to be part of such a project.

    URGENT UPDATE: WE ARE LOOKING FOR SOMEONE FROM 15th of OCT 2019 UNTIL AT LEAST 16 NOV 2019. We desperately need a dog sitter for two of our lovely schnauzers who are now quite old. They are not much work, just needing lots of cuddles and love! There is an opportunity to stay well until January, where I would be back and forth for a little bit and could introduce you to ceramics if that was of interest, and the studio is there for anyone who is experienced in ceramics.


    Life around here is not quite like anywhere else. Time feels not at all linear and you can taste the air as you breathe it in. People and the environment seem to have reached an understanding.

    Cycling along one of the many disused train lines and ancient ash shaded lanes, it’s not uncommon to pass locals in their flat caps, wheel barrowing large quantities of home grown vegetables around or to encounter a chasseur, riffle and trumpet in hand in search of wild boar.

    The quotidian is certainly particular, indeed peculiar, but it’s authentic and full of charm. If you feel like we do you’ll find perhaps the best place on earth to think, take stock and to grow.

  • Type of help

    Type of help

    General Maintenance
    Cooking / shopping
    Help with Eco project
    Help in the house
    Animal care
    Charity work
    Art project
    Help with Computers / internet

  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    We speak French at home so there is a good opportunity to learn a new language (though one of us speaks English). There is also the possibility to learn and practice large number of sculptural and artistic skills from pottery to numerous forms of mold-making as part of the work.

    More than anything it's an opportunity to experience a different way of life.

  • Help


    Last summer we ran our first season as a b&b and we were very busy so we are looking for people to come this year who can help prepare breakfast for guests in the morning and change rooms over

    we also need help to

    Establish our first vegetable garden
    repairing the collection of vintage bikes that we have amassed that will be for guests to use
    someone with professional a pr / social media specialist to help grow our network
    carpentry/ wood work

    so if you know how to do any of the above or (anything else specialist really) we'd love to hear from you. There is also the usual cleaning and painting and our two schnauzer's who love attention and walks and have been a little neglected since we embarked along our project.

    Above all willingness and a desire to help us build our vision is what's important to us.

  • Languages spoken

    Languages spoken

    French (primary) English and some italian

  • Accommodation


    Accommodation is the main house. You'll have your own room and depending on when you arrive usually you're own bathroom too.

    From the house, the walk into the main village centre takes about twelve minutes. The road that leads there is lined with traditional granite stone houses, crossing the river and passing the towering viaduct, the 13th c. L’Isle Fort and a barrage designed by Le Corbusier.

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    On arriving, it’s evident that L’isle Jourdian, has the same simple amenities as it did 100 years ago; a boulangerie, hotel, café, tabac, bar, clothing boutique, a grocers and a market on Saturday mornings. Lunchtime and the dodo (afternoon nap) are sacred and all the shops close between 12 and 2.

    One learns quickly to never, never ever disturb a local during these hours. One also learns to prepare for the fact that everything apart from the church is closed on Sundays.

    The bell rings out over village every hour but it’s still surprising easy to lose track of what time, or day of the week it is. One becomes instantly aware of the seasons and the body starts to set it’s self to the weather and to the light.
    In the summer it can get very hot and people swim in the lakes and rivers to cool down.

    There are vide-greniers here and in the neighbouring villages, the celebrated age-old tradition where the town’s occupants clear out their attics and arrange the contents for sale, along side stands selling sausage sandwiches and coffee. All year round there are other festivals of sorts and you’d be forgiven for thinking that life is little changed here, for a very long time.There is an abundance of local nature based activities, including waterski-ing, Kyacking and bunjee-jumping for the brave. There are several swimming lakes nearby and beautiful walks along the river, viaducts and former trainlines.

  • A little more information

    A little more information

    • Internet access

    • Limited internet access

      Limited internet access

    • We have pets

    • We are smokers

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?

    More than two

  • ...

    Hours expected

    Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week

Our wood-burning kiln which allows our guests fully understand the transformation of earth into ceramic through fire
Swimming lakes nearby
one of the rooms where you can stay
the 17th cent fresco's we restored
the view of our village from the viaduct nearby

Host ref number: 832598671899