Alfred University News

Alfred University Summer Arts Program now includes residency on Maine Coast, courtesy of parents of 2019 graduate Mary Hall Keyes

When Mary Hall Keyes ’19 graduated from Alfred University with her bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts, her parents, Sarah and Norman Keyes, decided they didn’t want their relationship with the University to end.

The result of those affections is a newly organized summer arts residency that Alfred University is offering to faculty, staff and graduate students of the School of Art & Design, to be located in Harrington, ME, where the Keyes family owns an idyllic strip of land, cottages and other outbuildings along the rocky Maine coast.

Alfred University Assistant Professor of Dance Colleen Wahl and massage therapist James Cornell will oversee the two one-week residencies on the Keyes property: “Anatomy, Touch and Movement Repatterning,” Aug. 7-11; and “Body, Landscape, and Creative Process, Aug. 14-18.

The Maine residencies are part of Alfred University’s larger Summer Arts Program, which offers a range of possibilities for people interested in spending summer days making art on the Alfred University campus. In addition to Wahl and Cornell’s summer course on the Keyes property, the University campus will be the site of workshops in ceramic art, photography and numerous other areas of art and music making.

The Keyes property is located approximately halfway between Bar Harbor and Lubec, on the Maine coast. Sarah Keyes’ family, descending from shipbuilders and sea captains, began acquiring the land in the 19th century. Alfred University in a partnership with the Keyes family began offering the property to faculty members as a retreat for summer art-making in 2021. Wahl and Cornell’s summer programs in August will be the first time the University begins making the residency available to the public.

The person whose years at Alfred University inspired the idea of a coastal arts program, Mary Hall Keyes, is a practicing artist in Philadelphia, where her parents also live. Learn more about her art making by visiting

To learn more about the Maine arts residency, as well as other summers arts programs hosted by Alfred University, visit the University’s Summer Art Program website.