Funded! This project was successfully funded on September 9, 2011.


The Clipperton Project Residencies are the 1st chapter of this unique program, aiming to unite science and art


The Clipperton Project is a unique, multi-disciplinary, international arts and science project which aims to take outstanding practitioners from around the world on expeditions to little-studied, inaccessible and complex territories which have been isolated by history.

The Clipperton Project takes the journey to these fascinating locations as its starting point, encouraging open collaboration between artists and scientists. It is hoped that the studies conducted in these locations expand and enhance both practitioners, fields of social investigation and ignite the interest of new and varied audiences. The Clipperton Project is a field laboratory, which aims to understand our social, political, historical, geographical and environmental position through international exchange and dialogue. By challenging the perceived boundaries of creative and academic spaces, The Clipperton Project aims to encourage a global community to confront subjects that affect us all.

For too long contemporary arts and sciences have resided in spaces that are only designed for their own consumers. For The Clipperton Project, it is imperative to move these practices into a new area of social usage in which people are urged to reflect and act on urgent social issues.


The Clipperton Project brings together San Francisco-based artist Martin Machado with 2 local artists/artisans in Mexico, to explore the themes of The Clipperton Project, in order to begin pushing the boundaries of artistic practice and to provide arts workshops to local communities.

Over the course of 5 months the artists from Queretaro state, Mexico will benefit from the artistic guidance of Machado, culminating in his curating of a final exhibition of their work in February 2012. The local artists will be provided with studio space and materials to develop their artwork and explore how we can use international collaboration to address local, social and environmental issues, via a united global community. It is not only the artists’ work that will be locally and internationally promoted, their voice will join others and shape The Clipperton Project’s international program, which will see presentations in over 12 different countries around the world by 2013.

Why local artists?

Local artists are part of their community; they are able to engage people in ways that outsiders cannot. Local artists offer a voice from within a community, as well as responding to it.

The Clipperton Project wishes to energise local communities to affect change by allowing practitioners to move across the perceived boundaries of their discipline and their location. We are trying to make the age old phrase ‘together we can do more’, actually mean more.

Why Mexico?

Mexico is the first destination where The Clipperton Project will hold a local residency program, but we do not intend for this to be the only location. These residency programs will continue in other parts of the world, allowing individuals to enter into dialogue with others in different countries. This is the beginning.

Local Mexican artists have told us that they believe they can make a change in their community. We want to help them make this a reality, but we want to make this program about a community contributing to a community, for the benefit of another community, which is our global community.


The Clipperton Project’s focus on communities led us to Kickstarter because this is a new community.

It is also one of the best examples of community out there; people supporting others to create.

We need your support to make this program a reality. The Clipperton Project is not about supporting established artists continue to travel in narrow circles, it is about enabling artists to access new audiences, and to allow new audiences to access art and science. You might be thinking ‘but this project is enormous?!’… and you would be right. But this project uses small means to achieve big things. We work hard to make the local count. We think it counts for everything. We also think that the global is the local.

If you want to help us achieve our goal, join our community and be involved from the beginning. No one is excluded from joining us on this journey.

Our journey is your journey. 


  • No. This project is seeking funding to specifically support an artistic residency for local artists in Mexico. The project forms part of The Clipperton Project’s wider program of international events and actions that aim to open up spaces for communities to discuss current practices and how we might work differently. If you would also like to support other aspects of The Clipperton Project, please visit our website for more information. Your support, in any capacity, is greatly appreciated.

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  • The Clipperton Project takes its name from the remote, Pacific island of Clipperton, a completely deserted atoll 1400km off the coast of Mexico. The Clipperton Project is organising an expedition to this fascinating island, which will allow artists and scientists to come together, producing work collaboratively and individually, and using each other’s work as a platform from which to push the boundaries of their respective disciplines amongst new and varied audiences. Clipperton Island has a unique and turbulent social history, as well as being home to diverse ecosystems that can tell us how the Pacific Islands are being affected by climate change. Clipperton is the first prism through which The Clipperton Project can ask important questions about our world.

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  • Yes. The Clipperton Project will be launching its dissemination phase in May 2012, running public talks, educational workshops, lecture series, art exhibitions and symposia all over the world. Wherever possible, these events will be open to the public. Information about our events is regularly posted on our Facebook page (, of which we invite you to become a member. We also run virtual events that involve everyone, no matter where you are located. We look forward to meeting you in the future!

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  • The oceans have a long history of inspiring artists. Martin Machado’s (USA) work discusses the sea and man’s relation to this vast, uninhabitable expanse. He has labored for over a decade in the maritime industry as a means by which to come close to it, often for months at a time, with no land or common experience in sight.
    Martin has seen the salmon return to his nets year after year in the waters of Bristol Bay, Alaska, and has stood in awe as the full moon rises over the deck of a nine hundred foot containership in the middle of the Indian Ocean. Alongside these beauties, he has also witnessed some appalling atrocities. One does not have to be a scientist to notice the currents of plastic floating in middle of the North Pacific gyre, or the filth coming out of a busy harbour.
    “If there is one thing I have noticed while shipping offshore, it is how connected we all really are; not just through the internet or the global economy, but through the visceral, ever-moving, currents of the sea.” Martin Machado
    For Martin, The Clipperton Project is another frontier in his ongoing pursuit of the oceans, and of our vanishing point within them. For The Clipperton Project, Martin is a bridge between communities, eager to energise new groups and discuss the themes raised within the project. He is the catalyst for the exchange of ideas and knowledge and, as a participant in the forthcoming expedition to Clipperton, is a skilled representative of The Clipperton Project.
    Please visit for examples of his previous work and more information about the artist behind them.

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    Your support is essential – Thank You! You will receive a hand-written Thank You postcard from Director of The Clipperton Project, Jon Bonfiglio, printed with a design by Participant Artist, Martin Machado. We will keep you up-to-date with all our activities and you’ll be recognised on our website as an official supporter.

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    We greatly appreciate your support. Receive a small, original postcard by Participant Artist, Martin Machado. We will keep you up-to-date with all our activities and you’ll be recognised on our website as an official supporter.

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    Thank you for becoming part of our community! Receive an original piece of artwork by one of the Participating Local Artists. We will keep you up-to-date with all our activities and you’ll be recognised on our website as an official supporter.

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    Receive a piece of original artwork by US Artist Martin Machado and an original short story by Project Director/UK Writer, Jon Bonfiglio. We will keep you up-to-date with all our activities and you’ll be recognised on our website as a special supporter.

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Funding period

- (30 days)