Creativity is a way of sharing your soul with the world.
– Brené Brown
Much like the romantic poets believed, I think the creative imagination is a spiritual force that has the capacity to change the world . . . In these complicated geopolitical times, the human condition is desperate for answers—how do we encourage more love and compassion and less hate and judgment?
How can we explain our schizophrenic world . . . we land spaceships on Mars, send NFT’s to the moon, and invent cranial implants that interface with technology when we have rape and torture facilities, invasions and occupations, and children go hungry. How can we reconcile the distances we have both progressed and regressed?
There will never be global reconciliation without human connection. Art is connection. Whether from telling authentic, personal stories or painting masterpieces on canvas, art is a conduit to peaceful coexistence. By way of example, two individuals who are at war can still love and appreciate the same work of art. That common denominator or art creates a relatability which in turn sparks an openness to receive and willingness to share differing perspectives. Because creativity is a foundational element to understanding one another, the artist in each of us must do more.
I credit the inspiration for creating art as coming from the divine (artists use many names . . . God, Universe, Spirituality). Having interviewed hundreds of creators . .. from artists to authors, I have found two commonalities; first, many creators are intuitive and empathic, and second, most understand the responsibility that comes with these gifts. Both Inspiring Women Alexandra Kauka and Dr. Christina Rahm realized at an early age their own path was unique and their responsibility to humanity was large . . . because they recognized the breadth of what they were bestowed.
This Art issue examines Austria’s rich cultural history, and its place as a European power, which fostered an atmosphere conducive to artistic innovation. Austria’s love of art and music made it a thriving center for artistry that continues today. From nations to artists, ELYSIAN spotlights two exceptional women. The contemporary Indian-born Neha Dani’s use of unique gems and non-traditional metals which results in extraordinary one-of-a-kind pieces of jewelry, pushing the boundaries of design, and translating into poetic composition in jewelry. And finally, renowned Mary Cassatt, whose childhood visits to museums set her on a path that would give the world her title, the First Lady of the early Impressionist Movement in Paris. Hers was a self-reflective life, whose art allowed this great creator to see her own soul. Mary, like many artists, took an isolated journey, never marrying nor having children of her own, yet becoming an early advocate through her art for women. Mary ventured alone the path that she was uniquely called to follow.
Creating art, from whatever the source . . . comes in many forms. Take for instance CatWalk FurBaby, where creative powerhouses, women change-makers, and animal welfare organizations joined forces to make the world better for our furry companions under the auspices of ELYSIAN Impact, ELYSIAN’s philanthropic arm. At the intersection of Philanthropy (Bissell Pet Foundation providing grants for participating Animal rescues), Designers (from around the world, Turkey, Great Britain, and the US), Models (newly discovered and world-renowned), Rescues (spanning the US coast to coast and beyond), and ELYSIAN’s Inspiring Women (who championed the event) in the iconic Sony Hall . . . was New York Fashion Week. In this issue the winners are lauded in full-page spreads.
With this and more, it is my sincere hope that the definition of ELYSIAN . . . “creative, blissful and divinely inspired,” is found throughout our pages. And that perhaps you, the ELYSIAN reader, are inspired to reignite your purpose and create or experience something you find compelling. Most importantly I wish you the opportunity to truly recognize the power of the gifts that you have been given.
Thank you for sharing the journey.