Saturday, December 18, 2010

What Yoga has taught me in the world of Art

Recently, I was featured in a newsletter created by my Yoga Instructor, Renee Diamond. The focus of her pieces are about how yoga has helped heal, change and transform lives.

Here's my story:

“To me, Art is like Yoga. It takes me on a heart centered journey to find peace, tranquility and the wonder of discovery”

Three years ago, I left my corporate career, after 15+ years at New York advertising and integrated marketing agencies and 6 years managing Interactive and Relationship Marketing Departments at Mercedes-Benz – to become an art dealer and gallery owner.

It started in 2006 with the death of my father, a health scare and management changes at my company.

I realized I needed to do something different…and something that I loved. On a vacation during that time in Hawaii, my husband came up with the idea of starting an art gallery and it lit a spark in me. As the daughter of an artist, I grew up with art in my home and around museums, and I knew the power of art to positively impact all our lives. After a year of exploration and research, I launched Elisa Contemporary Art in November 2007.

My gallery is focused on the healing and transformational power of art. I will only represent artists whose work makes me feel something – whether it’s joy, sorrow, pain or wonder – it has to make me feel. And I donate a portion of every gallery sale to charities helping underserved children heal through art.

Throughout this journey – both in my yoga practice and my business - I have learned so much including to:
  • Be open to the opportunities around me
  • Notice the miracles that happen every day
  • Be grateful for the “angels” who cross my path
  • Know that the strongest support may come from a community of like-minded strangers
  • Ask for help or the occasional “spot” during a difficult moment
  • Accept that there are many things beyond my control -- no matter how hard I try
  • Realize the more you give to others, the more you receive

While I’ve traded in my powerpoint presentations for power tools, my luxury company car for a cargo van, endless hours of “brainstorming meetings” for hours of seeing and feeling into art to find the perfect piece for my clients. I am amazed at the journey.

My Riverdale NY Gallery opened in 2008, I’ve participated in 8 high-end art fairs in New York, The Hamptons, Miami, and Boston; Curated 5 shows in Public Arts spaces in New York and 2 in private Design stores; and built an art consulting business.

I know without my Sunrise Yoga classes, I would not have had the courage and the openness to make this leap and follow my heart and my passion. It is the support and inspiration from those around me, and those who lead, that has helped keep me optimistic and motivated even during challenging times. It’s the belief – though silent in the yoga studio - that I am strong, whole and capable, even when I may experience doubt.

It continues to be a beautiful and graceful adventure.


Photo Credit: Robin G. London

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