Creative Catalyst: The Transformative Power of Making Art
February 20–24, 2023
February 20–24, 2023
with Dana Albany and Michael "Flash" Hopkins
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The Artist lives within everyone! Art can be made out of just about anything! It’s a time to leave the critic behind and allow oneself to play, nourish, and replenish the creative spirit. It’s also a time to enjoy the company and camaraderie of like-minded peers. Now is your time to discover the joys of art based on community and collaboration and to find out how meaningful and grand a shared, creative experience can be

In this transformative workshop, we will use repurposed material in a whole new context of re-creation.

Come experiment with a vast array of reused materials to create mixed-media mosaics, sculptures, and collages. There will be an assortment of recycled glass, metals, wood, plastics, paper, photographs, fabrics, and old artifacts — bits and pieces of the past and present.

In a beautiful, nurturing, supportive setting, we will reclaim and shape society’s scraps and discarded objects into re-imagined meaning. Find your own inner voice of expression as you delve into the process of creating art out of different materials and mediums,  and learn new skills.

Not only will you have the opportunity to explore your own expression and immerse yourself in solo creations, we will also engage in a collaborative group project to enter the whimsical world of community-oriented magic and play.

There is a transformative joy that comes from engaging with others in the artistic process. It opens doors unseen and forges deeper bonds between people. This exciting, shared experience teaches us how beautiful it is to break down barriers and collaborate.

This workshop is geared toward anyone with the desire to create. From the beginner to the advanced, this is a time to explore new possibilities. Together we will:

  • Explore our own creativity and immerse ourselves in solo artistic expression.
  • Engage in a collaborative group project and enter the whimsical world of community-oriented magic and play.
  • Leave the critic behind and allow ourselves to play, nourish, and replenish the creative spirit.
  • Discover the joys of art based on community and collaboration and how meaningful and grand a shared experience can be.

If there are any recycled materials, special mementos, poems, or photos you would like to bring and include in our creations, please feel free!

Dana Albany

Dana Albany

Dana Albany is an artist who has exhibited for the San Francisco Arts Commission, SOMAR Gallery, the de Young Museum of Art, San Francisco Airport, Exploratorium, and California Academy of Sciences. She has been awarded many grants and produced several large-scale sculptures for the Burning Man event.

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Michael "Flash" Hopkins

Michael "Flash" Hopkins

Michael Hopkins, aka Flash, is a legendary Burning Man figure. He is an artist, actor, instigator and storyteller. He has worked with Dana Albany on many projects. A unique character with his own creative flair, he both inspires and entertains in an unforgettable way.

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Workshop Schedule

Monday
8:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Tuesday
9:30 am – 1:00 pm
4:00 pm – 6:30 pm
Wednesday
9:30 am – 1:00 pm
4:00 pm – 6:30 pm
Thursday
9:30 am – 1:00 pm
4:00 pm – 6:30 pm
Friday
9:30 am – 12:00 pm

More activities can be found on our open class schedule.

See general schedule information including arrival, departure and meal times.

Accommodations & Tuition

Click Register Now to view availability of accommodations and all-inclusive, program-specific tuition. Please note that not all accommodation levels are available for every workshop and additional faculty fees may apply.

We offer scholarship funds for those with financial need. Learn more.

Accommodations & Tuition

For this workshop, you will register and pay for accommodations and tuition in two separate steps.

First, sign up and pay tuition directly to

Second, click Book Accommodations from this page and enter the password to complete your reservation to stay at Esalen.

Prices for accommodations include your lodging, meals, open classes, and use of the baths and other facilities. View partner program accommodations pricing.

COVID Update

All guests and faculty must provide proof of negative test results at time of check-in. Please read our current COVID safety guidelines for complete details prior to booking your stay.

COVID Update

In addition to proof of vaccination, all guests and faculty must provide proof of negative test results at time of check-in. Please read our current COVID safety guidelines for complete details prior to booking your stay.

COVID Update

Effective January 7, 2022 in response to the rapid spread of the new Omicron variant, all guests and faculty will provide proof of negative PCR, NAAT, or antigen test results at time of check-in. The test must be taken within 72 hours nd results must come from a laboratory or healthcare provider.Please read our updated COVID safety guidelines prior to booking your stay.

COVID Update

Effective December 15 in accordance with new guidance from Governor Gavin Newsom and the California Department of Health, all guests, students, staff, residents, and faculty are required to wear masks in all indoor public settings, irrespective of vaccine status, for the next four weeks (December 15, 2021 through January 15, 2022). Please read our updated COVID safety guidelines prior to booking your stay.

COVID Update

Effective November 19, 2021, in accordance with new guidance from the Monterey County Board of Supervisors, all guests, students, staff, residents, and faculty are no longer required to wear masks indoors on campus. Please read our updated COVID safety guidelines prior to booking your stay.

COVID Update

Starting November 5, 2021, due to substantial levels of COVID-19 transmission in Monterey County, a mask mandate established by the Monterey County Board of Supervisors will go into effect. Please read our COVID safety guidelines prior to booking your stay.

COVID Update

All guests will be required to provide proof of vaccination upon arrival starting September 3, 2021. Please read our COVID safety guidelines prior to booking your stay.

COVID Update

Masks are no longer mandated indoors or outdoors, except during massage sessions. Guests are not required to provide testing or vaccination verification before arriving on campus. Please read our COVID safety guidelines prior to booking your stay.

All-inclusive Pricing
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