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A Studio in the Woods

Photo of A Studio in the Woods Main House copyright Neil Alexander 2018

A program of Tulane University located in the eight forested acres on the Mississippi River in New Orleans, A Studio in the Woods is dedicated to preserving the endangered bottomland hardwood forest and providing within it a peaceful retreat where artists, scholars and students can reconnect with nature and work uninterrupted. The Studio has an established record of pairing land preservation with intimate artist residencies and connecting artists to the local community through creative discourse centered on environmental challenges. 

Rentals

A Studio in the Woods provides daytime rentals for staff retreats, workshops and small conferences. Please contact the office at 504-392-4460 or grennie@tulane.edu for rates and availability.

Main House (1200sq ft) - Our main house has a fully furnished kitchen and living room, along with a screened in porch (480 sq ft) equipped with a beautiful long wooden table. The space can fit 20 people comfortably for a seated event, and 50 for cocktail-style parties. It is perfect for a variety of presentations (projector and screen available for use). 

Workshop (600 sq ft) – Our spacious, window-lined workshop can be used for a variety of presentations and team-building activities. It comfortably seats 15, and is suitable for hands-on projects, meetings or presentations. 

Woods

For over 40 years, Joe and Lucianne Carmichael and now A Studio in the Woods have stewarded these 7.66 acres of bottomland hardwood forest directly adjoining 900 acres of government owned forest. These woods were clear-cut in the 1700′s to make way for a sugar cane plantation, but since 1920 have lain fallow. If A Studio in the Woods’ present land stewardship continues, ecologists expect that this forest will regain its primary state within 100 to 200 years. A Hardwood Bottomland Forest is made up of Oak, Elm, Hickory, Maple, Hackberry, Cypress, and Sweetgum trees situated in organic peat soils usually deposited through rise and fall of rivers. The Mississippi River has deposited thousands of layers of organic soil creating the substrate for this Louisiana Hardwood Bottomland Forest. A bottomland is an area which floods on a regular basis and holds a percentage of that water, creating a saturated environment. This saturated environment is the limiting factor that affects the species capable of being present. Ecosystems of this nature are special for their diversity, tree density, foraging area for animals, and hurricane protection. 

Research 

In 2004, thirty-two 10x10 meter square research plots were installed for long term monitoring of the invasive species eradication project.  Within the area of the plots all trees above three centimeters in diameter were mapped, measured for diameter, and damage described.  These trees are surveyed annually for the above criteria, as well as any new trees that have reached two centimeters in diameter.  Every two years an invasive species count is done within this area for the correlation to overall hardwood growth as it relates to Chinese Privet removal.  2019 will mark the fifteenth survey. The monitoring of damage from Hurricanes Katrina, Rita, Gustav, and Isaac has given Baker the information needed to establish a paper evaluating potential damage from hurricanes based on species.