The Studio /

Leadership Experiences through Artistry.

Throughout history, many great leaders have ventured that whole-hearted artistry is the secret core of what it means to be alive in this world.

Today’s leaders, at the forefront of progressive change, are taking pioneering steps to re-cultivate this lived artistry in organizational and personal life.

A poet, a singer, and a visual artist—entrepreneurs with deep experience in organizational leadership—explore the connection and interplay between artistry and work. Through all The Studio offerings we guide leaders back to their primal foundation as creators, connectors and communicators, through immersive and hands-on workshops, gatherings and retreats.

What business leaders will experience through The Studio:

  • You engage with your internal and external creative conversations
  • You take risks, and sometimes fail
  • You connect wholeheartedly with your creative self
  • You experiment with a wide range of practices
  • You sometimes collaborate
  • You practice artistry, and perhaps your art
  • You experience a wide range of emotions while engaging with your mind, heart and soul in a safe space of exploration
  • You deepen and reinvigorate your relationship with your artistic self, so that you are able to infuse this awareness into your work and personal worlds.

 

Diving In

Sometimes you want
to wade slowly in.
First, tender feet on a rough beach,
sharp stones and pebbles,
making your hesitant way
to ankles, knees, thighs.
You’re breathing faster,
getting used to it
a little at a time.
That’s one way.
But this is a hot, sleepless night
with strange dreams from a past
you had long forgot, and indeed
your unknown future is out there.
The surface of the lake glitters
under moonlight.
It is cool and silky.
But the deep, dark water
holds secrets unknown:
dangerous boulders
or felled logs.
You cannot predict this.
Or the terrible chance
that you will instead skim
the surface of your life,
or worse, dangle your feet
from the safe seat of the dock.
If you can imagine the shock.
The first sensation, the realization
that you have let go
of the solid ground
beneath your feet,
the ground you grew to trust
and take for granted,
you can catch your full breath,
now, bursting in your lungs.
Then this weightless, buoyant
body of yours, baptized
by longing and desire,
will rise up, shimmering
trailing luminescent moonlight
from your fingertips,
breathless and bold.
— by Libby Wagner
©2012 Libby Wagner. All rights reserved.
Panel 1

About

“The Studio is the antidote to business as usual”

Our vision for The Studio is a world where artistry is valued and reclaimed as an inheritance of being human and a place where the creative self is elevated at work and beyond. The circular act of artistry—intention, creation, refinement, offering and receiving—is akin to both the artist and the leader. The Studio is a place of practice where leaders can experiment with and deepen their own unique version of leadership through artistry.

All of our gatherings are designed to create space for the mysterious to unfold and reveal deeper, more provocative truths about our place in the world, be it at work or in our personal lives.

The Studio exists to invite, inspire and guide people to move into their own form of lived artistry, so that people rediscover their primordial foundation as creators, connectors and communicators.

The Studio bios

libbywagner_highres headshot-2015Libby Wagner is a poet, teacher, writer and speaker who works with organizations large and small, and leaders across the globe, to create the kind of lasting and powerful impact they desire, whether it’s through their unique approach to work, the language they use to influence and create, or the relationships they build. She is one of the only poets working in organizations where she inspires others to access and express their artistry, even when they might not normally describe themselves as creative or innovative. Libby is a trusted advisor for presidents, CEOs and executive directors, and her work has shaped the cultures of numerous Fortune 500 clients, including The Boeing Company, Nike, Philips, SAP, Diageo and Costco. Libby is a founding faculty member of the Institute of Conversational Leadership and Invitas with poet David Whyte, and she was honored as a Nellie Cashman Woman Business Owner of the Year in 2014. She has been quoted in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal and Harvard Business Review.

Libby is the author of Amazon Best-Seller, The Influencing Option: The Art of Building a Profit Culture in Business (2010), What Will You Do With Your 90,000 Hours? The Boardroom Poet’s Thoughts on Work (2016) and three collections of poems, including Like This, Like That (2002), Somehow (2012) and Dancing on the Summer Lawn (NP). She collaborates with Irish musician and composer Owen Ó Súilleabháin in live performance and audio recordings. Together they’ve created Harvest (2015), an audio collection of poems and original music, and the genre-breaking Now This (2017), an embodied experience of spoken word poetry. Libby has a Masters of Fine Arts in Poetry.

Libby has worked with hundreds of individuals to inspire and teach them to locate and express their voices in their writing, work and creative lives.

Headshot Owen3Owen Ó Súilleabháin is a singer and composer from Ireland, who draws on his background in philosophy, Greek and Roman civilizations, and peace studies to inspire creativity in individuals and organizations. Owen works with leaders to unlock the sensibilities of listening into areas where it’s most in need. He introduces creative and dynamic methods of listening, to enable more powerful communication and enliven transformation. Owen’s approach to leadership has emerged from his dedicated apprenticeships with the poet David Whyte.

As an artist, Owen has performed in more than a dozen countries and collaborated with Riverdance composer Bill Whelan, violinist Nigel Kennedy, actor Russell Crowe, director Steven Spielberg, and Irish traditional music legends The Chieftains. His mother Noírín Ni Riain is a leading sacred singer and theologian, and his father Mícheál is a pioneering national composer and founder of the Irish World Academy of Music and Dance. Drawing from this musical inheritance, Owen has released eight albums of both ancient and contemporary song.

Now based in the United States, Owen works with clients in some of today’s most challenging industries, from education to healthcare to the corporate world. He has composed songs for both The Teaching Channel—dedicated to more effective teaching in America’s schools—and the Storytelling Project at Stanford University. He has worked on the role of listening in healing and transformation for a California public hospital affected by gang violence. He has performed for industry leaders at the Center for Professional Excellence at the University of Texas San Antonio and at JJ Abrams’ Bad Robot Studios in Hollywood. Each summer, Owen curates and leads journeys of art and spirit in the Golden Vale region of Ireland.

Steve_Color3Steven Morris is an artist, writer and entrepreneur who, over the 27 years, has a thriving painting practice and over the last 23 years has lead his company Mth Degree, a brand evolution consultancy that works with and advises companies and leaders at large (Samsung, LG, Sony) and small (Green Flash Brewing Co., Port of San Diego, Fleet Science Center) to evolve brands to become more conscious and purpose-driven with deep and lasting impact on their cultures and the world of their audiences. Steve has worked with Conscious Company Media as an advisor and writer, Business WEEK, Brand WEEK and Forbes as a contributor.

He is the author of Brand Love & Loyalty and Humanizing the Customer Journey, and His forthcoming book entitled The Evolved Brand: How to Impact the World through the Power of Your Brand challenges current business assumptions and shows organizations how to create and deploy brands with purpose, artistry and impact.

Steve’s artwork explores the relationships between the worlds of natural environments, the unseen intuitive and spiritual worlds. As well, being trained as both an artist and designer Steve is constantly drawing upon the meaningful narratives of story and human emotion. His work is intended to take the viewer on a cathartic journey within their own intuitive self and throughout a moving world of “painting something as it’s felt, not as it is,” as Georgia O’Keeffe stated.

Steve has been a speaker for the past 22 years at national and international conferences on creativity and purpose-driven entrepreneurship. He founded and leads the San Diego-based Creative Sphere, a series of salon round-table conversations for business leaders on creativity and artistry at work. He has taught at Salisbury State University, Temple University, Tyler School of Art, San Diego State University and San Diego City College. He has an MFA from Temple University, Tyler School of Art. He is an SVN member.

Panel 2

Work With Us

The Studio guides business leaders back into their primal foundation as creators, connectors and communicators in business and in life. Often through the hands-on experience and vehicle of the written word, music, and the visual arts, Libby Wagner, Owen O’ Súilleabháin and Steven Morris—all practicing artists and business leaders—immerse Studio participants into a unique methodology of discovery and reclamation. When leaders experience The Studio, they connect with an essential component of a thriving approach to work.

Participants do not need to be self-proclaimed artists to benefit from this the Studio Experience. Together we will experience how the circular act of creation—intention, creation, refinement, offering, and receiving—is deeply connected to both the artist and the business leader. Through this multi-media, multi-sensory practice, participants will experiment with diverse artistic avenues that promote exploration, courage, expression, communication and connection, all relevant components of leading in the postmodern world.

PaintTexture_Seperator1

Here’s how you can work with us:

Performance (Keynote):

Performance Keynotes are multi-media, multi-disciplinary events. A hands-on connection to artistry (for its own sake) and application to work and life. They include audience reflection, discussion, conversation. Each is designed to inspire, provoke, immerse participants in an experience of sound, music, visual (live or projected) and spoken word (poetry or story or song). Performance Keynotes may or may not be “interactive” breaking the wall between the presenters and the participants.

Interactive (Keynote):

The Studio leads theme-based presentations with thematic and obvious takeaways. Each Interactive Keynote is designed to inspire, provoke and immerse participants in an experience of sound, music, visual (live or projected) and spoken word (poetry, story or song). Typical Interactive Keynotes includes elements of discussion, conversation and Q&A. These are not the typical stand-and-deliver keynotes.

Retreat: (See Self-Portrait Retreat)

Total immersion into the practice and revelations of artistry in one’s life and work; multi-day retreat. Take participants out of their ordinary lives and engage them in both a practice of artistry as a way of being but also living an artful life. All elements crafted and considered: location, timing, agenda, food, etc. Create transformational experience and practice to carry over into their lives.

Facilitation:

The Studio creates the container for specific work to happen with the infusion of artistry (e.g. innovative sessions, collaboration sessions, change management, brand exploration, courageous conversations). These are highly focused facilitations; can be skill-building; can be courageous conversation-based; there’s a very particular outcome or goal the client wants that is delivered through facilitation. Facilitations can be customized for large or small groups.

Coaching:

Studio leaders provide one-on-one coaching and support in the infusion of leadership artistry. This is done to provide added value to individuals who want to work with us, either because they want the personal consistency and support, or they want to sustain changes they are implementing in their work and lives.

The Studio Leadership Immersion Experiences:

The Circle of Artistry meets leadership.

  1. Intention and the internal path to leadership artistry
    Self-Portrait (immersion experience)
    Element: Fire
    Season: Winter
  2. Creation and the articulation of leadership vision
    Voice (immersion experience)
    Element: Ether
    Season: Spring
  3. Refinement and the shaping of leadership artistry
    The Eye (immersion experience)
    Element: Water
    Season: Summer
  4. Presentation and the performance of leadership artistry
    The Body (immersion experience)
    Element: Earth
    Season: Autumn/Harvest
  5. Receiving and the conversation of leadership artistry
    The Conversation (immersion experience)
    Element: Air
    Season: Any

PaintTexture_Seperator2

Self-Portrait: The Internal Path to Leadership Artistry

Every leader, every artist, must begin at the beginning, and that is with the self. Clarifying goals and vision as a leader is an essential part of approaching leadership as a wholehearted affair, but this is no simple task and requires first the crucible and kiln of the internal dialogue of reflection, self-assessment, and experimentation.

If you are a leader who finds yourself on the threshold of change—your own internal journey, the shifting tides of the external world, or perhaps even both—then this Studio experience may be the invitation you desire. The Studio, led by three successful entrepreneurs and artists, combines immersive, hands-on experiences with the written word, the artistic visual, and the sounds of music to create a unique approach to leadership through the lens of artistry.

The Studio immersion retreat, Self-Portrait, begins with your journey to the Cascade mountains of Washington State, a beautiful wild location along the Icicle River to the cozy and comfortable Sleeping Lady Resort. We’ve considered every detail, including transportation to the resort, comfortable accommodations, a quiet spaciousness, wooded surroundings, and delicious food. Imagine crackling fires, starlit nights, Chihuly glass sculptures, good conversation, and pragmatic application.

The Studio approach centers around the metaphor and exercise of Self-Portrait. We craft an image of ourselves, the way we are seen in the world, by shaping our intentions, our inner dialogue, and eventually our actions. The artistry and creativity of our leadership calls us to be more courageous and honest in our conversations with ourselves and with our work. You can expect to do the following:

  • Examine and experiment with artistry practices to clarify your intentions and align these with your organizational vision
  • Explore the space between your leadership intentions and the ordinary outcomes you experience in your work
  • Create a refined personal intention for wholeheartedness in your work and more creative approaches to the mundane

We ask you to be willing to dive in, take some risks, and imagine how your own work and leadership could be so much more fulfilling, enlivening and rewarding. The world is hungry for the real work, your real work, to take shape in new and interesting ways.

PaintTexture_Seperator3

The Voice: Creation and the Articulation of Leadership Vision

Every leader, every artist, engages in an ongoing and ever-expanding development and ownership of their voice. This is the clear and purposeful articulation of your unique vision and message in the world, but it’s not just about talking out loud, it’s also about a deep internal listening developed to shape your leadership artistry.

This Studio retreat—The Voice—creates immersive practices and experimentation, especially in the generative processes necessary and essential for your unique footprint and signature—your congruent and integrated showing up as a leader.

How will you honor the inheritance of your experience, your wisdom, and the unknown horizon? How do you participate in the creative processes of your own voice as a leader? In what ways will you shape and define an inspired path for those to follow and align to the greater unfolding of your organization’s mission and purpose?

PaintTexture_Seperator7

The Eye: Refinement and Shaping of Leadership Artistry

As a leader, you will, to some extent, be defined by the choices and decisions you make—your discernment and particularity, both in the moment and behind the scenes. You enter into the conversation of The Eye with two equally held assumptions: you will draw from the deep well of your experiences, your credentials, your successes and failures; and you will draw from your intuition, your sensory perception, and your desire to lead well.

This Studio retreat offers an immersive experience and practice in shaping and refining your leadership artistry, your decision-making, and your willingness to engage with a particular audience, perhaps not yet known. The development of The Eye of artistry will differentiate you from all other leaders in your practices and refinement of both preparing for and responding to the shifting leadership paradigms in the world and in your particular industry.

PaintTexture_Seperator6

The Body: Presentation and the Performance of Leadership Artistry

As leaders, we are often relegated to operating from the neck up—the over-emphasis on the intellect, data, and logic offers us only a portion of what we can be as leaders. We are all complicit in this practice. The full body, the full presence, is how you show up to present or even perform your leadership artistry. This may be in intimate, solo conversations, in front of large audiences, or even through digital media—but make no mistake, a talking head will not lead the organizations of the future.

This Studio retreat invites you to dive into an immersion of the practices and reclamation of the presence of the body and embodiment as an essential, creative tool for artistry. Sensory perception, movement, practice and preparation are the tools of the embodied, creative leader. Presentation is also about a willingness to hand over what you’ve created—the act of letting go and floating your ideas, creations and plans out in the world—how you do that matters.

The body never lies, and the evolving paradigm of leadership artistry invites us to show up as our whole selves—how are you holding your physical self? How do you embody your strength, vulnerability and presence as a leader? How can you be powerful and invitational at the same time? How will you present, frame and offer your gifts to the world?

PaintTexture_Seperator5

The Conversation: Receiving and the Back-and-Forth of Leadership Artistry

Sometimes, a leader mistakenly imagines that once the vision has been set and articulated, the message has been refined and shared, all will follow as anticipated. A creative, innovative leader knows that the conversation of leadership is about receiving, responding and engaging in the work of our work. We didn’t create in a vacuum—the intended audience was there, carefully held in our hearts and minds all the time—there is no such thing as drive-by artistry.

This Studio retreat offers a hands-on, immersive experience into the courageous conversations we have with those who receive our work—both internal and external to our organizations. In The Conversation. we consider our circles of influence and our circles of conversation with those essential relationships and with the community of creators around us.

How do we hear and receive the good news? The bad news? Criticism and praise? How do we invite the truth of our work and our people without cutting them off or shutting them down? How do we listen even more deeply to what we may learn from our teams, our clients or the world at-large? How do we recover and recommit after both success and failure?

 

 

Panel 3

Events

The Studio is honored to be presenting at the following events:

/

The Road Ahead Podcast

Jared Nichols will interview The Studio leaders to discuss the role and importance of Leadership through Artistry. Airing date to be announced. Click here to subscribe to The Road Ahead with Jared Nichols podcast.

/

 

Studio Salon, Seattle

At this small gathering a poet, a singer and a visual artist will share our art and invite you into a conversation around artistry and leadership. Please come with the intention of overhearing yourself say something surprising and delightful.

November 9, 2017

Location TBD

/

SVN’s 30th Anniversary Conference & Gala: Business for the Greatest Good

December 7-9 | Sonoma, CA

The Studio will be leading an immersive hands-on session for the SVN attendees during their widely attended annual conference.  To register, click here.

/

Self-Portrait /
The Internal Path to Leadership Artistry

An immersive retreat for leaders seeking wholeheartedness.

February 21-25, 2018 / Sleeping Lady Resort / Leavenworth, WA

Click here for more information.

Panel 4

Contact

To learn more about The Studio, inquire about working with us or to hire us for your event, please complete the form below. Thank you!