Serenity on the Upper Westside 1

The Defoor Hills enclave has long been a hidden mecca for resourceful designers, discerning shoppers and local art collectors. The corridor is gaining momentum with the exciting collaborations at Upper Westside Connection.  The team there is working to create a dynamic, exciting neighborhood interiors, antiques and artist market, that becomes a destination shop as it draws people into the area, promotes awareness of our locale, increases our customer base and profitability for our store/dealers/artists. We salute UWSC’s mission to provide a friendly and fair value environment for all customers by not gouging them on rent or ridiculously high market prices.

Cat Tesla is an artist who agrees  wholeheartedly with this creative endeavor and her work is featured at the Artist’s Market.

“My work includes both ethereal landscapes and abstract designs. The subjects I choose to paint are organic, either originating from Mother Nature, or inspired by her. I begin my mornings with meditation and then to my studio to paint,
says Cat in her artist’s statement. “One goal with my work is to transport the viewer into a realm of calm and respite, or perhaps to recall a memory of a favorite place or loved one. My visual vocabulary seeks to communicate the indescribable serenity and healing experienced from nature. Centuries ago the Persian poet and mystic, Rumi, put it simply: ‘Observe the wonders as they occur around you. Don’t claim them. Feel the artistry moving through and be silent.’”

ML: Your ethereal landscape paintings are captivating. Tell us about the scenes.

CT: I believe they originate from my subconscious, imprinted by imagery from years of hiking, exploring, and sitting at the water’s edge in prayer.

ML: And your Chrysalis Series is bright and hopeful.

CT: Chrysalis is the name given to the butterfly’s stage of growth where it is enclosed in a hard case just before it bursts out as a butterfly. The “Chrysalis” Series is about transformation. Beginning with an automatic drawing in graphite, translucent layers are applied, followed by more mark making, and more layers. There is a response to the previous gesture: it may be more of the same or total obliteration. Birth, growth, death, rebirth. There is tension and equilibrium occurring at once. Visual poetry. The “Chrysalis” Series was inspired and conceived while hiking in Serbia, Croatia, and Montenegro.

ML: What does painting provide you?

CT: Everyone has gifts from the Creator. I believe it is the duty of each to share our gifts with the planet. My paintings are a brave look inward – revealing what lies beneath both literally and spiritually. Yogi’s call it the “divine flame” – the spark that motivates you in life. In Buddha’s words, “Look within, thou art the Buddha”, while Jesus taught us that “The kingdom of heaven is within you”.

For me, painting is the most life affirming thing to do.