TEDxSeattle Salon: Practice Letting Joy in while Coping with Loss

As our community emerges from the grief of the pandemic, we confront new and familiar challenges. We invite you to take inspiration from Caroline Catlin’s talk - Why I Photograph the Quiet Moments of Grief. Learn how her own experience with illness inspired her to connect to others facing similar challenges. After a diagnosis of a rare form of brain cancer, Caroline Catlin was forced to confront her own mortality and come face to face with the complex emotions surrounding death and dying. Through photography and writing, she has learned to see the beauty in the end of life and reframed her perspective on her own cancer in the process.

Together, we’ll enjoy a glass of fine wine, watch Caroline’s talk (which has 1M+ views to date) and then engage in dialogue with Caroline and invited guests who will share their wisdom on the tough but universal experience of grief.

A limited number of in-person seats are available here for $10. Wine and food will be available before and after the panel. Audience members will be asked to wear masks during the panel.

Or you can reserve your free virtual spot instead!

A special thanks to Elsom Cellars for partnering to make this Salon possible.

Caroline Catlin

Caroline Catlin is a writer, photographer, and nap enthusiast. She exudes such a positive, bubbly personality that her desire to dive into intense and difficult topics may come as a surprise to some—but for Catlin, joy and loss feel deeply intertwined.

In January 2019, Catlin found out she had brain cancer. A long-time advocate for mental health, Catlin suddenly found herself dealing with trauma and devastating illness first hand. With the help of her “sunshine tornado” partner, she made it through multiple rounds of radiation and chemo that were followed by coffeehouse jaunts with her dog and close friends in tow. The road was long, but she made a point to, “practice letting joy in.” Through it all, Catlin found the strength to process her own journey through trauma and to look with an inquisitive and sensitive eye at how other people function through life’s most difficult moments.

This work has taken Catlin and her camera to the bedside of those breathing their last breath and into the lives of individuals dealing with intense grief and loss. Catlin’s research and work in behavioral health and developmental trauma have inspired her to reform the way health, illness, and disability are portrayed in the media. Through her lens we can discover the art within caregiving and therapy.

Lynette Huffman Johnson

Founder Lynette Huffman Johnson began photographing families and children in 1984, shortly after the birth of her first daughter, but in 1996 her sister-in-law asked her to take a different kind of picture: a picture of her niece, Lainie, who was stillborn. Another close friend’s baby had died over two decades prior, and it was the memory of these two children, Lainie and Janus, that inspired Lynette to form Soulumination.

Since its inception as a 501(c)(3) non-profit public organization in 2005, Soulumination has grown to over 60 professional photographers who volunteer their time and talents, and over 120 community volunteers who lovingly help us serve these families.

Caroline Wright

Caroline Wright is a cook, author, and terminal brain cancer patient. After her diagnosis, she focused her career on her two sons and the connection that comes from telling her story. She’s written four cookbooks and four children’s books. Caroline lives in Seattle, Washington with her family. www.carolinewrightbooks.com

Colleen Robertson (Moderator)

Born and raised in Seattle, Washington, Colleen has been directly involved with grief work for nearly a decade through her board service with the Safe Crossings Foundation. Indirectly, Colleen has been involved with Safe Crossings Foundation and grief work since she was a little girl. Colleen's mother, Teresa Bigelow, co-founded Safe Crossings as a direct result of the death of Colleen's father when she was seven years old. Having experienced such intense loss at such a young age (and witnessing her two younger brothers and her mother experience their own grief), Colleen will be forever dedicated to the cause of helping kids and families grieve. As an Executive Board member and past President of the Board, Colleen has supported the creation of an annual conference for grief-related service providers and has helped expand the types and number of programs Safe Crossings Foundation funds by instituting an annual granting fund.

Colleen is the digital marketing director with local start-up, HeadLight and has previously worked for Expedia and Slalom. Additionally, she has freelanced as a marketing consultant for many Seattle-based SMBs and nonprofits. She started her career in direct service with nonprofits, first with YouthBuild via Americorps and later by launching and running the GED program for YouthCare's Orion Center.

Colleen is mother to a 1.5 year old human, as well as a middle-aged dog, and an elderly cat. She lives with her son/dog/cat and husband, Benjamin, in beautiful West Seattle.

SCHEDULE

4:30 Doors open for guests at Elsom Cellars
5:15 Virtual doors open for guests on live stream
5:30 Salon begins
6:30 Salon ends; wine and food available
7:00 Last call


Hammer, chisel, stone: simple tools for hard moments

Would you start a project that you knew you could not complete in your lifetime? In this 2020 TEDxSeattle talk, Richard Rhodes challenges you to do just that, and shares lessons he’s learned from decades of sculpting stone by hand. 

Rhodes describes technology as a barrier between humans and the material world. He shows that tackling difficult, lengthy projects by hand allows time for reflection and problem-solving, and ultimately inspires creativity--a quality that’s particularly necessary in hard times.

More to explore: 


Poetry to set hearts on fire

“I write poetry from my own experiences,” says Anastacia-Reneé, “and to make those experiences tangible for others to help create change.” In this powerful reading, Seattle Civic Poet Anastacia-Reneé invites us into her version of “the talk” that people of color feel bound to share with their sons as they walk out in the world — a world where being young, and brown can too easily get you shot. Her second poem, brings us back to the everyday world of raising children who often ask the toughest questions, including, “do I matter?” Anastacia-Reneé is a writer, performance artist, and workshop facilitator who has been described as a queer super-shero of color. She is the 2018-2019 Seattle Civic Poet, the 2015-2017 Poet-in-Residence at Hugo House and the recipient of the 2017 Artist of the Year Award. She is the author of five books and her cross-genre writing has appeared in: Women of Resistance; Poems for a New Feminism. Sinister Wisdom; Black Lesbians—We Are the Revolution and many more. She has received writing fellowships from Cave Canem, Hedgebrook, VONA, Artist Trust and Jack Straw, as well as a writing residency from Ragdale and Mineral School. She grabs time to write whenever possible which as the mother of two children and a teacher of three programs, is usually between 10 p.m. and 2 a.m. “When poetry takes center stage, tension-filled spaces become safe literary hubs where community members can gather to share and celebrate the plethora of local, historical, and contemporary voices” says Anastacia-Reneé. This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community.


PHoto of artist barry johnson in his studio

Explore, Play, and Tinker Again! Create Art out of Anything.

The first adventure filled up almost immediately, so artist barry johnson is holding a second session to share ideas on creating art from found materials.

Johnson will lead a hands-on exploration of Seattle ReCreative, the Creative Reuse Store and Community Art Center. Learn about, and create artwork from reclaimed objects. And, through the practice of tinkering, learn new ways to think about how to solve problems and create all while having fun. Each participant will create a work of art out of recycled and reclaimed material that they can then bring home. Please wear clothing suitable for doing art.

About TEDxSeattle Adventures

Adventures are unique events designed to offer participants unparalleled, behind-the-scenes access to the people and places making the local community so dynamic. The goal of every adventures is for participants to meet and interact with the masterminds behind the future of technology, business, art, and entertainment (to name a few). As many of our adventures are cross-generational by design and open to all, we can stimulate conversations amongst people of all ages, professions, and neighborhoods.


Back of the room at The Riveter as the audience watches TEDxSeattleLive on the large screen

TEDxSeattleLive: Watching TED 2018 "The Age of Amazement"

 

To introduce TED2018, TED owner Chris Anderson and TED Head of Curation Helen Walters asked the audience to complete a simple task: to turn to someone whom they didn’t know and state what, over the last year, the main emotion is that they’ve felt. In Seattle, the crowd that was gathered at TEDxSeattleLive followed suit. Strangers exchanged quick greetings and with just a few minutes for the exercise began sharing their hope—and fears—from the past year.  Looking from the back of the audience during TEDxSeattleLive 2018 held at The Riveter

While there was plenty of apprehension in the crowd, there was also hope for what the next year would bring despite an increasingly divisive global culture. Seattle has long been known as a city filled with forward-thinking innovation and passion for change, so it’s no surprise a day full of learning and inspiration was met with such an openness to how an idea can shape the future.

The event screened two different sessions over the course of the day: “Doom. Gloom. Outrage. Uproar.” then “Wow. Just wow.” Between the two sessions, the audience listened to topics ranging from the #MeToo movement by Tracee Ellis Ross, to how artificial intelligence can upheave the job market as we know it today by Kai-Fu Lee.


PHoto of artist barry johnson in his studio

Play, explore and tinker - Create art out of anything

During this adventure, artist barry johnson will share ideas on creating art from found materials.

johnson will lead a hands-on exploration of Seattle ReCreative, the Creative Reuse Store and Community Art Center. Learn about and create artworks out of reclaimed objects and through the practice of tinkering, learn new ways to think about how to solve problems and create all while having fun. Each participant will create a work of art out of recycled and reclaimed material that they can bring home. Wear clothing suitable for doing art.

About TEDxSeattle Adventures

Adventures are unique events designed to offer participants unparalleled, behind-the-scenes access to the people and places making the local community so dynamic. The goal of every adventures is for participants to meet and interact with the masterminds behind the future of technology, business, and entertainment (to name a few). As many of our adventures are cross generational by design and open to all, we can stimulate conversations among people of all ages, professions and neighborhoods.


Playing a Violin Outside the Box

Geoffrey Castle aims to shatter people’s preconceived notions of what is possible on a violin.

With a strong interest in community outreach, Castle is thrilled to give back through performances at schools from kindergarten to college. When playing for schools, Castle loves inspiring kids— first to pick up a stringed instrument, and then to learn to “play outside the box”.


Blue jeans or blue water? Fashion powering conservation around the world

Most people don't link high fashion with the conservation movement but Ava Holmes founded Fashion for Conservation (FFC) to do exactly that.

Ava and her team of industry-leading fashion professionals and her colleagues in the conservation movement have been raising awareness as well as funds by producing wildlife-inspired fashion campaigns and hosting events at Fashion Weeks around the world such as Elephantasia, a campaign to help protect African elephants, And now Elephantasia can be seen as part of TEDxSeattle in the first fashion show included in a TEDx talk. Inspired by her film producer mother and by her father, an instructor in outdoor survival skills, Ava grew up with a deep love of nature as well as beautiful art. A noted producer, Holmes’ career in fashion has always been influenced by her connection to nature, so combining her interests in fashion and conservation became an obvious choice. Eschewing traditional fashion production because of its excessive waste, Holmes decided fashion should be the solution to its own problem and created Fashion for Conservation. It’s working. Her nature-inspired approach to fashion is featured on the catwalk in fashion weeks worldwide as well as in mainstream media, reaching non-traditional audiences with a message of conservation. Fashion for Conservation now funds a variety of innovative conservation projects in threatened ecosystems around the world.


Setting scientific research free

The results from taxpayer-funded, scientific research are often locked behind a paywall.

Jennifer Hansen, a senior officer in Knowledge and Research at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, says the cost of accessing that data is too high. Limiting access to the research results in social inequity and puts human lives at risk. She argues that the current model of research distribution is overdue for disruption. Hansen says it’s time to foster a scientific revolution through open access to data. Jennifer Hansen is an equity advocate with a fierce dedication to ensuring information and scientific knowledge is free and available to all. Her professional career has revolved around closing the digital divide and inspiring others to believe in the power of knowledge to shape their world. Ms. Hansen currently works at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation as the Senior Officer for Knowledge & Research. She drives the strategy development and management of the foundation’s research outputs and is an influencer in shaping the future of scholarly communication. She championed and led the implementation of the Foundation’s groundbreaking Open Access Policy – a policy requiring that all its funded published research be immediately available to everyone, everywhere without barrier or restriction. Nature called the bold action to open up scholarly research the”world’s strongest policy on open access research.” And, The Economist described it as “something that may help to change the practice of science.”


Virtual reality can be a powerful tool for understanding each other

Virtual Reality is a work in progress, says Sandy Cioffi, and she outlines exciting ways VR is being used to experience "the other," to virtually "walk in someone else’s shoes."

Artists as using immersive media, to create new narratives that would allow you to put on a high-tech headset and feel what it’s like to float down the Amazon river, experience life as a different gender, or scatter in the wake of destruction on a Syrian street. With examples of some of the most exciting work going on in this new media, Sandy argues that VR can provide a seismically new way to understand ourselves and, in the end, give us a greater understanding of what it is to be human. Sandy Cioffi was the Director of SIFFX, the Seattle film festival's celebration of virtual reality and immersive filmmaking and is currently director of the New Media and Virtual Reality X Fair coming in 2018. As a filmmaker, Sandy has worked with human rights organizations in global hot zones and has worked extensively with Hate Free Zone (now One America) producing films about treatment of immigrants post-September 11th. In 2005-2008, Sandy traveled to the volatile Niger Delta in Nigeria to film "Sweet Crude," documenting conditions and interviewing the region’s key stakeholders, including leadership of the armed resistance movement. She has been active in political advocacy for the Delta’s people, appealing to media, U.S. legislators, international diplomats, and NGOs. Sandy has worked as an artist-in-residence at many middle and high schools in Washington State and through the mentor/apprentice film program at the Langston Hughes Cultural Arts Center. She was the founder and Director/Chair of Film + Media at Cornish College of the Arts. Currently, Sandy is directing a non-fiction media project with CREA, a feminist human rights organization. She is the co-founder and Creative Director of the start-up fearless360º creating immersive media and education events around the world. This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community.


Nikkita Oliver

Through spoken word and images, Nikkita Oliver urges a reexamination of both history and the stories we tell.

From the 1968 Summer Olympics to Colin Kaepernick, from Timothy McVeigh to the Blank Panther movement, she reveals fragments of truth often hidden within the bigger story. Holding a light to these distinctions, Oliver urges us to see the invisible frames that shape our assumptions and worldview, and challenges us to look beyond the image.


Why the world needs your story

A filmmaker by accident, Eliaichi came to her story while exploring her Tanzanian roots. Her journey as a first-generation Asian-African American led her to ask questions never asked before. The answers shocked her and helped her see how sharing our stories can reshape lives.

Eliaichi Kimaro uses art and video to bring stories of struggle, resistance, and survival to a broader audience. She brings a lifetime of personal and professional experience exploring issues of culture, identity, race, class, gender and trauma to her Award-winning directorial debut, A Lot Like You. She is currently on the campus/conference lecture circuit, engaging with communities around the world about gender-based violence, global mixed race/multicultural issues, cultural identity and the power of personal storytelling.
Through her production company, 9elephants productions, she has produced over 80 videos for local and national non-profits working within underserved communities to address social and economic justice issues. Following her 5 year term as President of the Board at the NW Network of Bisexual, Trans, Lesbian and Gay Survivors of Abuse, Kimaro joined the Board of the Seattle Globalist, a daily online publication dedicated to elevating diverse voices through media.