Arts
Our Pains Are Not the Result of Our Flaws: Q&A with Amy Yoshitsu, AiR
July 23, 2021

Former Artist in Residence Amy Yoshitsu explains the social infrastructure that causes suffering for many, plus a human infrastructure that helped ground her at Esalen.

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Esalen Welcomes Another Group Of Artists To Restore And Create
July 20, 2021

We are excited to introduce and welcome our new group of artists in residence. Keep reading to get to know Jazsalyn, Coral, and mirrored fatality. If you're coming to our Big Sur campus and see them, please say hello.

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See Yourself Outside of Yourself with Darnell Walker, Artist in Residence
July 15, 2021

Filmmaker and former Blues Clues writer Darnell Walker recently stayed at Esalen as part of our Artist in Residence program. In this Q&A, he shares about how his art could change the future and a conversation with someone who helped him understand that at the heart of his work is healing.

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A Conversation with Esalen Spring Artist in Residence and Black Boys OM Founder Danny Fluker
March 31, 2021

Atlanta’s Danny Fluker, Jr. is a writer, yoga teacher, IT professional, and wellness advocate. He’s also the founder of Black Boys OM and — as of March 15th — Esalen’s current Artist In Residence. We chatted with Danny halfway through his stay on campus.

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Meet Our Spring 2021 Artists in Residence
March 5, 2021

The connection between artists and creative spirits is a foundational part of Esalen’s lineage. We piloted the Artist in Residence program (AiR) last year with Sharon Virtue. Now, the full program officially launches with three exciting artists who span the creative spectrum.

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Living and Learning at Esalen: Jake Potter
October 1, 2015

In the course of one year, there are more than 300 students participating in Esalen’s residential education program. Ranging in ages from 18 to 70-plus, they come from across the country and around the world to study, work, and live at Esalen for 28 days, a summer, or an entire year depending on which program they choose to pursue.

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Gratitude Practice: Exploring Art and the Senses
November 1, 2015

The change in seasons can bring about a sense of wonder, of noticing the details of nature’s colorful palette. There are many ways to enjoy our natural surroundings, including this gratitude practice incorporating creativity and our senses of sight, sound, smell and touch.

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Esalen Inspirational Film Festival to Be Held in April
January 1, 2016

How can we as individuals transform society? How can film entertain, uplift, and enlighten? How can we build community around transformation?

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Fostering Creativity at Esalen
April 1, 2016

These are just some of the suggestions by Esalen staff who, as artists themselves, embrace Esalen’s natural beauty to foster and spark their creativity. Some, like longstanding community member Daniel Bianchetta and technology specialist Kyle Evans, express their creativity through photography. Their work can be seen in the latest Esalen catalog and is also available for purchase in the bookstore.

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Exploring Compassion and Serenity through Film
May 1, 2016

This July, Dr. Francis Lu and Brother David Steindl-Rast will be hosting their annual seven-day seminar on mindful viewing of film, particularly those which feature Japanese and Western perspectives. Francis, the Luke & Grace Kim Endowed Professor in Cultural Psychiatry, Emeritus, in the Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences at the University of California, Davis, and Brother David, noted author, psychologist, and Benedictine monk, have been co-leading these workshops at Esalen since 1990.

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Inspired by Nature
May 1, 2018

Christina Dauenhauer is a landscape designer and artist living off the grid near Hood River, Oregon. Between 2009 and 2016 she was Esalen's Grounds Manager and specialized in succulent design. Christina recently returned to Esalen to lead Inspired by Nature: Creative Expression in Esalen’s Big Sur Landscape. We recently spoke with her on how nature inspires and informs her art.

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The Traveler's Practice
June 1, 2018

Travel can be transformational. The practice of writing about our travels — those "best trips" that continue in our memories long after we've returned home — can both deepen our experience and help to generate lasting insights. In their upcoming workshop The Traveler's Practice: Journey and Journal, renowned writers Pico Iyer and Janet Fitch will guide you through an exploration of your inner and outer worlds through the lens of travel writing.

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Striking a Balance Between Grief and Joy
January 1, 2019

The capacity to feel the experiences of others — whether grief or joy — can open your mind to a greater sense of belonging in the world, and close the divide that separates those you might otherwise consider irreconcilably different from yourself.

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Seeing Life as Art: A Conversation with Erin Lee Gafill
April 1, 2019

Born in Big Sur and raised at Nepenthe, her grandparents’ iconic restaurant located just north of Esalen, painter and Esalen faculty member Erin Lee Gafill grew up in a household where creativity reigned. From making holiday ornaments out of tin cans and building her own toys out of scrap wood to writing plays, painting and dancing, Erin continues to weave the creative process into all layers of her life.

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Creativity and Freedom: A Guest Essay by Esalen Faculty Adam Wolpert
April 1, 2019

I am a painter of nature and have had the pleasure of teaching painting at Esalen for the past 16 years. I have thought a great deal about the dance between the poles of limitations and the limitless as it pertains to creativity, and Esalen is a good place to contemplate both.

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Reflections of a Big Sur Nature Photographer
April 1, 2019

As a third-generation Big Sur native and an Esalen staff member, Kyle Evans sees creativity as a natural part of life. “It’s no coincidence there’s a high concentration of artists in Big Sur,” says Kyle. “Here, art is more than any one ‘thing;’ it’s a way of living and a way of being.”

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The Sixth Annual Esalen Inspirational Film Festival
April 1, 2019

Cinema is a powerful creative art form that transports viewers to new realms, both real and imagined. Films entertain, of course, but they also have the potential to educate and inspire. From An Inconvenient Truth and The Cove to Waiting for Superman, films can expand our horizons and encourage us to take action in our lives and communities.

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The Stories Behind the Storytellers
June 1, 2019

The Esalen Inspirational Film Festival (EIFF) concluded its sixth annual gathering last month with its unique mixture of art and inspiration that is anything but ordinary. “Of course it's not traditional, because it’s happening at Esalen, and nothing about Esalen is typical!” says festival co-founder Corinne Bordeau. “There’s a sense of intimacy and collaboration that includes not only the filmmakers but every participant.” A social change aspect marks the festival as well and is reflected in the many films that are programmed such as this year’s “Biggest Little Farm” and “Nature to the Rescue”.

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Esalen Reads: What's on Their Nightstand?
February 1, 2020

We delve into books for so many different reasons: guidance, knowledge, curiosity and oftentimes to lose ourselves in a captivating tale that can take us to the farthest stretches of our imagination. Esalen News invites our faculty to share what’s on their nightstand and why.

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Esalen Reads: What's on Their Nightstand?
March 1, 2020

We delve into books for so many different reasons: guidance, knowledge, curiosity and oftentimes to lose ourselves in a captivating tale that can take us to the farthest stretches of our imagination. Esalen News invites our faculty to share what’s on their nightstand and why.

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Founded in 1962, Esalen is non-profit center for exploring and realizing human potential through experience, education, and research. Esalen is a pioneer on the leading edge of consciousness, where spiritual possibility, intellectual rigor, somatic practice and sustainable living converge toward an integrated realization of the human potential. Esalen sponsors pioneering initiatives and offers personal, spiritual, and social transformation practices for workshop participants, residential staff and interns. Located on California’s scenic Big Sur Coast, Esalen welcomes more than 17,000 visitors each year.