ÁNI Art Academies is a global, not-for-profit organisation that delivers a comprehensive art education to aspiring artists around the world – especially those in underprivileged circumstances.
The concept is a collaborative project conceived by ÁNI Private Resorts founder, Tim Reynolds, and its aim is to empower local artists to create, express, and communicate in new and exciting ways.
The organisation is home to a handful of art academies that are strategically located in exotic tourist destinations; enabling students to interact with tourists and residents in an intellectually and financially-rewarding capacity.
The multi-year curriculum, which focuses on drawing and painting, was developed by renowned Master Artist, Anthony J. Waichulis. Over fifteen years, he has dedicated his time and passion to carefully designing a world-class program for ÁNI Art Academies that promises to transform any dedicated student into a highly-skilled artist.
The teaching dynamic at each ÁNI academy is modelled on the ‘atelier’ system, which traditionally comprises a small number of apprentices studying directly under a master artist. Classes are organised to maximize individual apprentices’ attention and provide invaluable experience working alongside an accomplished professional artist.
The academies’ curriculum concentrates on the essential fundamentals of draftsmanship, properties of light, elements of perception, and various methods of painting without subscribing to any particular aesthetic.
An Artistic Adventure for ÁNI Private Resorts Guests
“ÁNI” is derived from a Swahili word that means “on a path or great journey.” This beautiful notion applies to students of ÁNI academies, who are rewarded for their hard work with a lifetime of creative freedom, logic and discipline. At the beginning of their education, they may feel as though their limits are constrained by skill, however, by the end, they are bound only by their imagination.
It also applies to guests of ÁNI Private Resorts’ four properties in Sri Lanka, Thailand, Anguilla and Dominican Republic, who have the unique opportunity to visit the art academies during their stay at any of the luxury properties.
ÁNI Private Resorts work symbiotically with ÁNI Art Academies in a cycle that benefits all involved. The resorts support the academies financially, the academies support the artists, the artists create works to hang in the villas, and guests have the chance to visit the academies and purchase their own keepsakes.
Guided trips to the local ÁNI academy – including a tour of the facilities, a chance to meet and mingle with the artists, and the opportunity to buy any of the art – are complimentary to ÁNI Private Resorts guests and are a highly-recommended cultural outing.
Each academy is located in a setting that not only embodies the local way of life and allows guests a rare glimpse behind the scenes, but also provides visual inspiration for the artists. Preference has been given to spots that are quiet, where solitude is perfectly conducive to artistic development and a sense of scholastic serenity.
In Sri Lanka, the ÁNI Art Academies complex is nestled amid the endless rolling hills of the Central South Coast in the Matara District, perched above vibrant rice fields and surrounded by lush vegetation and sprawling tea plantations. Diverse wildlife such as whales and rare turtles frolicking in the nearby Indian Ocean complement the surrounding grounds and allow artists and guests to immerse themselves in peaceful seclusion while accessing the best of the island country.
The ÀNI Art Academies Thailand studios are situated on picturesque Koh Yoi Noi, a beautiful, mountainous island located off the west coast of the Andaman peninsula. Also called ‘Little Long Island’, Koh Yoi Noi is one of the last unspoiled gems of the area and boasts a simple, laid-back feel. The beauty of the surrounding rice paddies and gorgeous views of sheer limestone karsts reaching out into the turquoise bay allow for both inspiration and a sense of unmatched serenity. The small island has a rich history and friendly community where artists are able to easily feel at home, while taking advantage of all that the island has to offer.
The ÀNI Art Academies Dominican Republic studios are located on a beautiful four-acre site on the country’s north coast, in an area decorated with plush hills that spill down to a dramatic coastline dotted with beautiful beaches. It is a more rural part of the country, where warm and welcoming farmers and ranchers live in peace, and each artists’ workstation offers customisable lighting, multiple working surfaces and large windows that showcase the soothing pastoral views.
ÀNI Art Academies Anguilla resides on an acre of land on the island revered as one of the Caribbean’s true gems. Perched on hill sloping gently towards one of Anguilla’s few farmlands, it sits only steps from one of Anguilla’s most famous secluded beaches, Little Bay. Anguilla boasts a friendly and welcoming population of only 12,000; a collection of some of the world’s most gorgeous beaches; and truly relaxing Caribbean charm.