CAT TESLA

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.

College was a toss-up between art and science. I began with the latter and obtained a Master’s Degree in Human Genetics. For 20 years I worked at Emory University seeing patients in genetic clinics. Averaging 500 patients a year, I had a range of experiences: telling someone the child they were carrying had anencephaly (lack
of skull formation at the back of the head) and would not live, telling someone they inherited the BRCA1 gene and had a very high risk of breast cancer, or telling someone their 4 year- old child who was not developing properly because they had a neurodegenerative disease – eventually got to me. Certainly there was a lot of good news to parlay as well.

Because of the stress, I turned to yoga, hiking, and mindful meditation. My brain found peace in nature. I studied art in the evenings after genetics clinic – a degree in graphic designed, followed by residencies with Nicholas Wilton and Steve Aimone. I was inspired to put nature to canvas – the shapes, colors, and feelings. I went part-time in genetics, and then traded genetic counseling for a full-time art career.

My paintings are abstracted nature-scapes created using wax crayon, acrylic inks, oil pastel, graphite, & custom glazes. Beginning with an automatic drawing in graphite, translucent layers are applied, followed by more mark making & more layers. Various mediums are utilized to build the surface.

Scientists hypothesize that being in nature allows the prefrontal cortex, the brain’s command center, to dial down and rest, like an overused muscle. In fact, after just a 3 day camping trip, you can increase your creative problem solving by 50 percent.

2017 was my 20th year doing art festivals and showing in galleries in the U.S. and U.K. As an international artist, I couldn’t be happier.

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. 


Available at Muse Gallery Hilton Head

Contact for details: 843-715-4330 or hali@amusegallery.com