Visiting Artist

Michelle Susan Elliot, PhD

Since a child I have been fascinated with movement and the changes it brings about to life.

A favorite memory of mine is sitting out in the backyard in a chaise lounge on warm Southern California nights (circa 1950's) remembering that feeling of the breeze on my face.  The movement was as a tender caress and I began to think of it as the breath of God....I followed it...I grew more and more curious about the intuitive movement of our bodies, what plays on them and what this tells us about changing and growing more and more into our true selves, our authentic selves. 

While working on my Masters Degree at Antioch University in Santa Barbara, California (1980) I was introduced into the study and practice of Authentic Movement, as developed by Mary Whitehouse at Camario State Hospital.  I studied with her student, Joan Chodorov.  Tapping both the intuitive and conscious movement of life this became a major part of my work for 30 years.  

Because of my living situation...on 500 acres of rolling grass land and very old Live Oaks in a coastal valley northeast of Santa Barbara, California, this natural environment, the land, became our studio...along with the hawks, owls, coyotes, cows and assorted other wildlife, day or night, every season (Califonia after all!).  In the 1980's, with growing attention to the woman's movement, I focused entirely on Greek and Sumerian goddess myths and translated the stories into expressive movement experiences.  

Now, as director of a sorority at Rensselaer Polytecnic Institute for the past several years, I have the opportunity to bring movement and meditation into my work with young women scientists.

BA   San Francisco State Univ                      1965

        Art and Education

        (emphasis: clay, photography)

MAAntioch Univ, Santa Barbara, CA             1982 

       Psychology

       Movement Therapy

PhD Univ of Utrecht, The Netherlands

        Univ Without Walls, Los Angeles, CA  1988

        Bioethics

       (emphasis:  The Ethics of Elder Care)

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