Tuesday, February 2, 2016

How I went from a family trip to Maui to painting Hawaiian women?

It was August 2013. We were enjoying one of the last summer evenings in Vancouver, when my husband panicked. He told me: what will we do this coming December? You know how hard is to spend the winter break at home… so he went on-line and bought us tickets to Maui! We all needed a vacation. I had worked for months on my first solo Art Exhibition “Honouring Women” which I launched on October 2013. Of course my husband and kids needed a vacation too. A few months later we were enjoying paradise! At first, I was just happy to enjoy the sunshine and warmth and of course watching my boys so happy it made the trip worth doing.
Family time!  December 2013

While visiting the Island, I reconnected with a childhood friend, Tamara Catz, who has been living in Maui for the last 20 years. Both full-time mothers, artists and entrepreneurs, we decided to collaborate on a creative project. This project brought me to visit the Island again. This time I came on my own. On that visit, I bonded and fell in love with Maui culture, arts and dance and of course its nature.  My vision was to create a bold, colorful and powerful show that would focus on women’s stories while giving back to the Island. This deepened understanding prompted “Hawaiian Sisterhood”, a collaborative exhibition with Tamara Catz and Women Helping Women, where the vitality of storytelling united with rich visuals, courageous hearts, sisterhood and focused community alliance.

Lunch with the staff of Women Helping Women, a local organization, May 2014
The opening evening of “Hawaiian Sisterhood” at Tamara Catz was beautiful, filled with friends, local yummy food and Hula dance. This initiative was featured in various media local channels.

           With Tamara Catz on the opening night reception of "Hawaiian Sisterhood", October 2015
“Hawaiian Sisterhood” prompted an invitation to take part in “Celebration of Hawaii 2016” an exhibition at Viewpoints Art Gallery, in conjunction with an accomplished roster of artists from all of the local islands in the state.
 “Celebration of Hawaii 2016” launched on Saturday, January 23rd. I flew to Maui with my friend Sharon in order to attend the opening night reception. The reception was packed with artists, family, friends and collectors. Each artist got a beautiful LEI that helped identify artists from visitors. Joelle and Oliver Perz, the owners of the gallery are very supportive and professional. They did a spectacular job of getting a great selection of art work and organizing a beautiful opening. I feel very honored to be part of an outstanding collection of work of arts that celebrates the culture, landscapes, traditions and colors of Maui.
                                  With Joelle and Oliver Perz, Viewpoints Gallery, January 2016

                                Opening Night Reception, with beautiful Hula dancers, January 2016

And now? I have done everything I could to follow my dreams and intuition. I wrote this blog to narrate how a family trip turned into a career change for me. It was all unexpected and spontaneous. I believe that life is taking me to a place I haven’t planned and the only thing left is to enjoy the ride. I am certainly benefiting from the beauty and inspiration the Island has been offering me. My paintings depict joy and bright colors, all taken like a scene from paradise. Now, my paintings are waiting for the right buyer... and I am open and looking forward to the next invitation!

"The stories you believe to be true are the ones your life will become" with love, Jazmin

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