In May 2016 Bart Drost spent four weeks as an artist in residence at the Foundation Obras, Estremoz, Portugal. Usual such periods are a source of inspiration for him and they promote the work ethic. Although he didn't experience this residence as much inspiring , he succeeded to realize a fantastic project.
Why it was so uninspiring? It is a beautiful location, nature glitters and the property has a three-star level. That the weather was terrible bad (in ten days fell as much rain as in the year 2015!) may not be a reason, though this of course affects the general feeling of well being negative.
No, the lack of inspiration was more the fact that he experienced the residence as an isolated place, more or less as a monastry. Of course, the area was gorgeous, with its rolling countryside, the ringing ringing sheep, satisfied grunting black pigs, storks and majestic meadows with plenty of colorful flowers. But where were the Portuguese? Bart had not the feeling he was spending my time in Portugal. Also the on IKEA inspired decor of the houses did not contribute to an authentic Alentejo feeling.
That he still looks back on this work period with a very good feeling is mainly due to the fact that within fifteen minutes walk from the residence there was an old abandoned train station. During a walk on the second day of my stay he saw that half ruined, half bricked building and he knew immediately that this would be the place where he had to do 'something'.
Since then he worked for three weeks continuously on the project that finally would be named 'o teatro de passagem'.