July 8, 2017 reflections
The 2017 workshop on Folegandros has come and gone. It was a beautiful, fulfilling experience and I'm still in a lilting state of gratitude.
I could not have wished for or dreamed up a more inquisitive, creative, thoughtful, spirited and willing group of students. All artists of varying mediums, with ages ranging from early 20's to late 70's and from far flung parts of the globe including Europe, South Africa, and both coasts and points in-between of the USA -- we were an ecstatic and harmonious group. It was also quite wonderful to have two Greek members of the class.
I am ruminating now about the whole experience, as well as collecting photos and recollections from participants, and will post more soon. For now, I'll happily say it seems that the experiment worked, and we entered into a marvelous richness. I began personally with a months-long (continuation of life-long), deep delving into images and literature from ancient Greece. I pondered relationships between ancient stories and images, archetypes, poetry, human embodiment, Alexander Technique principles, environment (and oh my, what a glorious environment we had on Folegandros, and in our beautiful classroom, graciously donated to us by the town and people of Folegandros). I considered how to convey and manifest these relationships in human interaction, environmental awareness, and daily life and creative movement explorations. The ancient stories and images connect to nature so magnificently and specifically. Thus, time spent outside the classroom on the island was an inspiring continuation of our work. And, we all just went there together.... It was a joy. Thank you, thank you, to all the participants.
A very important mentor and friend in my life, Paulus Berensohn (whom I met initially while teaching at the Penland School of Crafts) passed away just a couple of days before the workshop began. I knew Paulus was on his way for some time before that. In my heart and spirit I dedicated the workshop to Paulus and his lifetime work as an artist and Deep Ecologist. And, to his belief that we are all meant to behave artistically. Yes, we are. You blessed me, Paulus, by your presence on this planet. I shall continue attempting to spread the word.
I've had inquiries about whether I will teach this workshop again in 2018 or 2019. I'm considering it. If you are interested in future Greece workshops, let me know. And/or - check back to my website! No doubt I'll always feel compelled to return to Greece -- for as long as this body can carry me there. And there is great joy in sharing it with others.