Sykes has been invited to reside in Neskaupstaður (pop. 1400), Iceland, for one month as a designer-in-residence working alongside local residents, visiting designers, and regional Austurland partners. She sees this residency as the continuation of a long-term relationship and a continued exchange amongst rural practitioners and residents.
Many rural communities in the American West and East Iceland have struggled for decades with population decline, mitigating destination development, and an uncertain economic future (often dependent on corporations). Though these seemingly dissimilar towns share many challenges, they are all rich in culture, untapped-potential, natural resources, mythology, history, and all the reasons we love rural places. Sykes is honored to be invited to continue her ongoing research and to better connect Green River and rural towns in Austurland (East Iceland).