Using energy, creating art
Staci Ohayon has been living and painting in Ashland since she moved from her Israel home last September, taking her teaching sabbatical to be near her son, Alon, who is taking a year off between high school graduation and compulsory military duty at home to work with teens from Ashland&
s two synagogues. Ohayon will be presenting an art show in April exhibiting work from her latest series, &
The Four Elements.&
s paintings, which she calls simply &
serve two purposes she says, providing healing energy and aesthetic enjoyment.
m a healer and an artist combining the two. I create paintings that transmit the positive healing energy of the elements they portray. I love it.&
Beginning about seven years ago in Israel, she worked as a public school teacher at various grade levels, teaching creative thinking and English to children and teens, and teaching teachers how to teach their students in &
— — ARTIST SKETCH — —
Name: Name: Staci OhayonAge: 49Hails From: Born and raised near Philadelphia. Lived in Israel — for over 25 years, and has lived in Ashland since September.Training: Self-taughtNiche: Energy Art, acrylic on canvas.Inspiration: &
Ohayon had also been working as an energy healer when she attended an art class given by a woman in her moshav, a rural, communal neighborhood in the Golan Heights region of Northeastern Israel where she raised her son. The region that initially inspired her art features many of the same qualities as our Siskiyou region with volcanic rock formations, pastures, natural springs, rare and unusual plant species, abundant wildlife, snowcapped mountain peaks, fruit orchards and vineyards.
In the art class, painting for the first time in many years, she rediscovered a past joy. &
It was a wonderful feeling,&
she says, explaining that in high school, art had been her favorite subject, and how, when given her first watercolor set given to her by her parents when she was in kindergarten, &
I painted everything I saw.&
Shortly after starting the class, she had a dream that clearly showed her combining her healing work and paintings of the natural world. She paid attention and began painting pictures depicting earth, wind, fire and water. Each one, she says, brings the energy of that element to the area in which it is placed and to those who view it. Crystals are adhered to and part of some of the paintings.
Ohayon says her art and feng shui go hand in hand, bringing the energy of the element to the space through a process that isn&
t easy to explain. &
Everything is built of energy. I paint these with a with a conscious intent. I don&
t know how else to explain it. How do you explain magic?&
Born and raised just outside Philadelphia, Ohayon ended up in Israel while traveling through Europe in her early 20s.
I really just ended up there &
133; I was born Jewish, but I was raised in kind of a secular family. Being Jewish really had nothing to do with it. I had just planned to travel Europe, and when I went to Greece, I thought, &
145;Israel is only a few more dollars away, and I could work on a kibbutz. I was young.&
she says, adding, &
Then I fell in love with my husband there, and I stayed.&
Since Ohayon has been living in Ashland, she&
s continued to paint. She says she loves Ashland and is seriously thinking of making this her permanent home.
She says that, while she misses her friends in her close-knit moshav, she has friends and family in the U.S. she misses when she&
s there. Walking during the interview, she stops to appreciate four deer walking down the sidewalk. In the African-Syrian rift where she lives, they have no deer, she says, but they have gazelles and other wildlife including wolves and eagles.
I love it here, how it is out in nature. And it&
s a lovely community. I&
m drawn to the sense of community here.&
s art show, &
The Four Elements&
will be held from 2 to 5 p.m. Sunday, April 9, at the old Briscoe school, 366 Glenn St. Her energy art paintings will be displayed and live music will be provided. Her work can also be viewed at her online gallery at www.staciohayon.com.