The Artist Collective:
A Working Retreat and Exhibition
in the South of France

Have you ever dreamed of showcasing your art internationally?

How would it feel to add a line on your resume to say that you’ve exhibited your work in France?
And what if the experience of this exhibition itself was even richer than the words on your CV?
Read on dear Artist, because you’re invited to join:

The Artist Collective:
A Working Retreat and Exhibition in the South of France

May 12th- 20th 2024


You inhale the fragrant night air of France as stars twinkle above. The moon sits like a fertility goddess in the sky; heavy, full, expectant. You’re standing proudly in the final ceremonial circle with The Collective: your artist brothers and sisters.

You look at the beautiful faces of these new friends and reflect on the adventure you just shared. This is a celebration of a remarkable journey. Your heart feels connected. Your spirit is glowing. And so are you.

You have been transformed. You can feel it in your bones. It’s true that endings are sad, but you have found what you came to Provence for: Magic. Learning. Connection. Beauty. Truth. You.

You found your Self in Provence.

By the end of this retreat:

  • You’ll have valuable new professional alliances

  • You’ll understand new ways of working and living as an artist

  • You’ll feel seen as you’ve shared your work and your ideas

  • You’ll understand how to use social media as a reflection of your art practice

  • You’ll craft an Artist Statement that says to the world I AM HERE

At the end of this retreat, a new line on your CV will say that you exhibited in the South of France. But you will always know that it was so much more…

This journey has forever touched your art practice.

And your life.

There’s some sort of Magic Potion for artists here.

Energetically, this small part of rural Provence has been drawing artists, heretics, and dreamers for years. And who can blame them? 

Just ask Salvador Dali, Pablo Picasso, Vincent van Gogh, Dora Maar, Kiki Smith, and Louise Bourgeois, to name but a few artists who’ve journeyed to this remarkable place.



The Artist Collective is about the exchange


Too often, artists work in isolation. But my professional experience shows that real results come from network.

In France, you’ll work within our Artist Collective, and we’ll open our group to include local artists who are doing inspiring work and are keen to learn about yours.

This will be a true art exchange.

This isn’t the tourist’s trip to Provence. We won’t be on any beaten paths. Instead, I’ll show you the beautiful secrets and hidden magic of this inspirational land, the Land of Artists.

Your art practice may never be the same.

“I’m surprised to say that this retreat was an unexpectedly profound experience. I think all of us were surprised by how deep and empowering it has been. I walked away from this retreat changed – and with dear friends whom I hope to keep forever.”

Laura Williams, Tennessee

The Artist Collective will culminate in an exhibition.


You’ll show your art alongside the others in our group and the artists we’ve spent time with in France.

This is your chance to shine on an international stage and add a unique and impressive line to your CV.

You’ll be returning home with new friends, new professional connections, a trunkful of inspiration, and memories you’ll treasure forever.

Don’t wait for the world to discover you. Show it who you are.

“Working with Crista was well worth the time, the money, and the journey.

It was a small group but one of the most rewarding times I’ve spent with other artists. We learned so much and we got to know each other in a real way.

I feel like I am a better person for having experienced this. A better artist.”

Mary Morgan, Texas


What: An 8-night immersive art experience, working retreat, and exhibition.

“This retreat was uplifting and working with Crista was amazing. She’s a wonderful person. Not only does she speak French, but she also speaks ART. She was able to guide me and helped me find a path to where my art is going to go.” Billy Walker, Canada BC


When: We will begin with a Welcome Dinner prepared by our own private French chef, on Sunday, May 12th. We will finish with a Celebration Lunch on Monday May 20th, 2024.

  Where: You’ll love the spacious Bella Vista villa, nestled in the hills above Roussillon. Set on a 66-acre estate, this private family home boasts beautiful decor and a modern art collection.
Bella Vista has 7 lovely bedrooms and 6 exquisite baths. And there’s a large heated swimming pool with a view that will take your breath away.
The house is 1.5 miles from Roussillon. Roussillon is one of the most stunning places in France, a hill-top village known and loved for its amazing palette of ochre colors. For this reason, as well as others, Roussillon has attracted artists for centuries.
Note: Bedrooms will be assigned at a later date with priority choice given to the first registrants.


Everything in France is delicious – especially the food!

Everyone talks about the French Paradox. How can they eat and drink with such ease and never gain weight? Or age? 

I believe that I’ve discovered their secret.

The French love food. In fact, they revere food. And contrary to what you might think, French food isn’t about fussiness and cream. Well, maybe cream.

But the French see food as life, and they engage with it passionately. They take huge pleasure in the intoxicating freshness of produce and bread and cheese. They respect food, eating locally and seasonally. They savor the flavors of food the same way that they savor the flavors of life.

In Provence, you’ll discover graceful new ways of enjoying simple food – the French way. You’ll feel inspired by food.

Note that we can accommodate your dietary restrictions.

You are the canvas. 

You are the painter. 

This is your life. Make it art.

  • You’ll stay in a stunning Provençal villa nestled high in a forest with jaw-dropping views, surrounded by red ochre rocks.
  • I’ll take you on pilgrimages to ancient sacred spaces.
  • You’ll wander along ancient cobblestone streets.
  • You’ll hike through enchanted forests.
  • You’ll enjoy soulful conversations about art.
  • You’ll meet other contemporary artists interested in real world issues.
  • You’ll walk amidst the ghosts of those artists past who shared these same valuable exchanges before us.

This is what art is built upon!

And we’ll delve deep into the heart of your own art practice:

  • We’ll explore new ways to express your unique perspective.
  • You’ll create a social media presence that reflects your artistic identity, connecting with your audience in new and meaningful ways.

When you share your art, you share your heart.


Meet your guide Crista Cloutier:

Actively involved in the contemporary art world throughout her career, Crista has been called “The Artist Whisperer” by the thousands of artists who have worked with her. 

Crista has led exclusive art tours and retreats in France, UK, and the USA for artists and guests from the American Association of Museum Directors, Art in America, Dow Jones and The Wall Street Journal, to name just a few.  

Honored by LinkedIn as an “Influencer in the Contemporary Art World,” Crista has collaborated with some of the most significant contemporary artists showing today.

She’s taught and lectured throughout the world, helping aspiring artists in over 80 countries to become working artists and guiding established artists as they reach even higher.

Crista lives in the South of France.

The Artist Collective includes:

Whimsy. Adventure. Laughter. Inspiration. 

As well as:

  • Pre-trip meetings to plan the exhibition and answer your questions
  • Travel support to help with logistics in getting to Avignon
  •  8 nights stay at the luxurious Bella Vista in a private room
  • All meals, including fresh local wine
  • Studio visits, tours and private guides
  • A private minivan and driver
  • Exhibition costs and support
  • Social media mini-workshops
  • Artist Statement support
  • A few surprises (wait for them!)
What’s NOT included: 
  • Medical or Travel insurance (We highly suggest you make this investment for peace of mind)
  •  Shipping of artwork to/from France (It will go in your luggage)
  • Insurance for artwork or special framing
  • Travel to/from Avignon TGV train station
  • Travel support beyond the retreat
  • Cocktails or additional wine or meals beyond group offerings
  • Souvenirs, spa services, gratuities, or private purchases 
The Bonuses:
  •  2 pre-trip group calls to plan the exhibition and support you on your journey
  • Travel support from our professional agent
  • A reunion zoom call
  • A special surprise!

“If you’re an artist and want to transform that into your main job, Crista is the mentor you are looking for.”

Antonella Raimondo 


The investment for artists joining this experience is $5277, inclusive of all costs except travel to Avignon. 


Cancellation policy

  • A $500 non-refundable deposit is required at time of registration to reserve your spot.
  • We reserve the right to cancel the trip if it is not meeting the trip minimum (if we do so your deposit is refunded in full).
  • Any cancellation made before February 28th, 2024 will result in a loss of 50% of the trip price.
  • Any cancellation made after February 28th, 2024  will result in a total loss of funds.
  • All cancellations must be received in writing via email. Keeping the above in mind if you do need to cancel please email Crista.  
Note: No refund is given if the participant contracted the virus and can’t attend the retreat, in which case, travel insurance would most likely cover any losses depending on the travel insurer’s policy. It is important to confirm with the travel insurance provider that Covid-19 related issues are covered and to what extent.
In fact, trip cancellation insurance is always highly, highly recommended whenever making travel plans. Any medical expenses, quarantine due to COVID-19 or other cancellation costs of travel are at your own expense. We are happy to recommend and help you with this through:
It is STILL important to confirm with the travel insurance provider that Covid-19 related issues are covered and to what extent.

What happens next?


You can save your place with a $500 deposit now. Book right away and you-ll get a $750 discount!

If this sounds like an experience you’d like to have but you have questions, book a call with Crista. This will be a curated experience designed around the artists who join and for the exhibition of their work.

You can book a call with me here. No pressure. We’ll talk about the trip, your art and your practice to see if this opportunity is a good fit.

 “Crista’s teachings helped me rediscover my artistic voice and how to reexamine my entire body of work. Her methods have a way of cutting through to pin-point your stumbling blocks. She helped me uncover what I was really trying to say with my art at a time when I felt like I had forgotten how to even speak about my work.”

Karen Jilly

 Getting here

You can fly into London, Paris, or Marseilles and then make your way by train to Avignon TGV or Cavaillon Train Station.  Arrive at the train station on May 12th by 4 pm local time. Transportation will be provided to the retreat house.  If you are not arriving in time to be on our van, we can help you arrange your own taxi to the house (at your cost).
Depart from Avignon TGV or Cavaillon Train station on the afternoon or evening of May 20th. Transportation will be provided to the train stations.
If you want help booking your flights (at no additional cost) or if you wish to come earlier or stay later in France — reach out to Ales Struna (pronounced Alesh) our travel planner extraordinaire.  

“Crista has given me new confidence to be a stronger person, who just happens to be an artist.”
Mary E. Morgan – maryemorgan.com

Dear Artist:

I first arrived in Provence as an art student, full of dreams and fears and questions and hope. And it was here that I fell in love. I fell in love with Life. 

Fast forward several years later, back home I was caught up in a career as an international art dealer that didn’t feed me. I felt lost, overwhelmed, and separated from that creative girl who I used to be.

So I returned Provence. 

I returned to Provence because I desperately needed to fall in love with Life again. I returned to Provence because it had once been a deep wellspring of creativity and joy for me.  I returned to Provence to find my Self. 

My life has never been the same.

It’s my dream to share the magic with you.

Come join me in this beautiful Land of Artists.

Crista x

Come to France for an Experience of a Lifetime!

Scroll to Top

Art Advice + Motivation straight to your in-box