Speaking Topics and Events
SEE BELOW FOR PREVIOUS SPEAKING ENGAGEMENTS AT CONFERENCES AND FESTIVALS
Victoria is available for speaking engagements and slide show presentations on the following topics:
Feminine Mysticism in Visionary Art:
In this presentation, I talk about the book project, the history of ancient Goddess civilizations and art. I also discuss the social importance of the reclaiming of feminine wisdom in postmodern culture. In addition, I highlight the importance of the Transcendental Art Movement in conjunction with the Women’s Spirituality Movement and the InterSpirituality Movement. In conjunction, I show clips of the animated DVD (Feminine Mysticism in Art) as well as a visionary art slide show presentation of some selected works from the book. (SEE BOOK PAGE FOR MORE INFORMATION)
Artists Envisioning the Primordial Sacred Union:
In this presentation, I expound in great detail on the ancient, universal archetype of the Primordial Sacred Union. I explain the functional but often misunderstood role mystics and visionary artists play in an assortment of cultures; particularly, how they are trying to help humanity transcend out of oppositional dualism and awaken to a new mode of thinking, that of consecrated polarity, which is another way of describing the Eastern concept of yin/yang.
Drawing from the works of Carl Jung, Lao Tzu, June Singer and an assortment of contemporary mystics, I discuss the various ways in which imaging the divine as female is essential to our spiritual evolution, for we won't be able to transcend gender associations in Western culture unless the autonomy of the feminine principle is firmly established in human consciousness. I discuss a number of powerful images of the sacred union by contemporary visionary artists, such as Martina Hoffman, Amoraea Dreamseed, Mark Henson, Chris Dyer, Abba Yahuda, Heather Thompson, and their importance in disrupting male dominance and the patriarchal ideological systems that justify and maintain social inequality.
Women Artists and Identity Formation:
In this presentation, I discuss my qualitative research on women artists and identity formation, which is quite extensive. This research project examines the process by which various women have come to assume artistic identities as artists as well as the transformations in self-perceptions that occur upon having adopted an artistic identity. Prior research on women artists and identity formation has tended to take either a strictly “externalists” social constructionist approach or an “internalist” psychological or biological approach, assuming that identity transformation is determined by either socio-cultural factors or internal, psychodynamic mechanisms.
Yet, this research delineates that by examining the conditions, by which women artists’ formulate identities, they cannot help but reflect the complex interplay of both internal and external factors responsible for the birthing of their artistic identities. In other words, identity formation is both a subjective, internal process as well as an objective, social phenomena—it is both self created and socially constructed.
The data in this research resulted in a “Holarchical Model of Artistic Identity Development” which illustrates four sequential stages or “holons” that all women go through in their identification process: Naïve, Neophyte, Virtuoso and Authentic. As on moves through the developmental process, she will have perceptions of herself at each stage, which eventually changes as a result of a gestalt of both internal and external factors that are unique to her internal, psychological dynamics and external socio-cultural context.
Bodhisattvas of Compassion: Healing Heart With Art:
In this presentation, I lay a foundation of Tibetan Buddhist principles as well as teachings about compassion by various ascended masters. Every heart is connected to the Great One Heart. It is from this heart of hearts that we are unconditionally loved, nourished, healed and redeemed. The Hebrew word for “compassion” is derived from the word for “womb.” God is the primal matrix, the Great One from which all beings are born and all love streams forth. We experience on a very tangible level this immense love pulsating through our veins. This heart connection to source is our lifeline or umbilical cord. I also discuss the visionary work of several “Heartists,” such as Heather Taylor, Julia Weaver, Sue Halstenberg, Eva Sakmar, Leslie Gibbons, Ilene Satala, and Melanie Gendron.
In Search of a New World View: Envisioning the New Golden Era on Earth:
In this presentation, I explore in more depth what exactly this “new world-view” is and how to accomplish it without stepping into despair or burn out. What might such an enormous paradigm shift look like should we succeed? What are we dreaming into existence with the imaginal cells of this paradigm shift, this Great Turning, this metamorphoses as we begin to weave our cocoon? What will emerge? While this is an enormously complex subject that is occurring on multiple levels and in various disciplines, I scratch the surface of several important topics, such as: death of Capitalism and a rebirth of a revitalized Socialism, co-creativity and sacred activism, awakening the new masculine, sacred economics and the gift economy, permaculture and the slow food movement.
In addition, I also discuss the visionary art of several male artists who are on the path of conscious evolution and supportive of a feminist agenda to create a new system of equality and liberation for all, such as Robby Donaghey, Amoraea Dreamseed, Raul Casillas, Daniel Holeman, Aaron Pyne, Paul Nicholson, Davin Infinity and Jose Arguelles.
Postmodernism, Feminism and Identity: Toward a Unification of Knowledge and Self through Consecrated Polarity:
This presentation is an attempt to illustrate some of the positive as well as contradictory aspects of the postmodern agenda on both macro and micro levels, particularly its usefulness as a political tool for feminism.
On a macro level, although I recognize the validity and purpose of postmodernisms proliferation of difference and diversity as far as enhancing our awareness of the multiplicity of truths and knowledges, I question the extent to which the proliferation of these differences is highly ambiguous as it raises the issues of relativism and separatism. And on a micro level, although postmodernism has brought about an awareness of the diversity of identities and the multiplicity of selves which has aided in the reconceptualization of the modernist unitary, autonomous self, there is a growing concern that the postmodern, socially constructed self has become too fragmented, splintered and contradictory and is in need of reunification through the cohesive weaving of a life narrative. Therefore, I’m not so sure the postmodern appeal to particularism and diversity, as an oppositional stance to the modern agenda of universalism and absolutism is really a solution to present day problems. Rather, I believe the postmodern and modern agendas need to be understood as both complementary and oppositional.
Spirituality and Sociology: Cultivating A New Paradigm from Oppositional Dualism to Consecrated Polarity:
In this presentation, I talk about the ways in which we live in a culture where the greatest portion of intellectual and scientific thought continues to be dominated by the scientific method. Sociology and spirituality, at their core, represent the spirit/matter dichotomy which has been debated about for centuries. In this presentation, I propose that it is time for the dominate, scientific paradigm within sociology, in light of new understanding from the hard sciences to re-examine some of its underlying assumptions that are based on old scientific paradigms and on modernist modes of thinking. I challenge the dominant tendency within sociology which views sociology and spirituality as opposites and propose a shift into a new mode of thinking I refer to as consecrated polarity. Rather than falling prey to oppositional dualism and viewing sociology and spirituality as opposites, we need to start to view them as autonomous, but also mutually interdependent.
As supporting evidence to my argument that spirituality and sociology are both autonomous and interdependent ideas, I provide evidence from cutting edge scholars in biochemistry and quantum physics who are effectively challenging the hegemony of naturalism and explain how the current movement into a new paradigm will not destroy scientific study of nature, but allow it to come fully into its own. I propose that a radical restructuring of perception at the epistemic level needs to occur; a transformation out of the modernist use of oppositional dualism into a new mode of perception I call consecrated polarity, which explains that nothing exists in distinct and separate categories without also being intertwined, interconnected, and interdependent. Therefore, the idea of moving forward to a post modern mode of thought, rather than seeking escape from the horrors of modernity through a return to a pre-modern form of life, means incorporating the virtues of modernity and overcoming its vices.
Previous Speaking Engagements and DVD Showings
Oasis Healing Arts Center, Book release and Group Art show, Ashland, Oregon, 2014.
Faith and Feminism Conference, DVD Showing, San Francisco, Ca., November 7-9, 2008.
Center for the Divine Feminine, Lecture/DVD Showing. Palo Alto, Ca., November 14, 2008.
Enchanted Mountain Goddess Conference, DVD Showing, Allegany State Park, Salamanca, New York, November 7, 2008
Earth Dance International, DVD Showing, Lafayette, Ca., September 12-14, 2008
The Flying Lotus, Lecture/DVD showing, Mt. Shasta, Ca., Sept 6, 2008
Rogue Valley Metaphysical Library, Lecture/DVD showing, Ashland, Or., September 5th, 2008.
New Renaissance Bookstore, lecture/DVD showing, Portland, Oregon, August 30th, 2008
Peace Village Festival, speaker/DVD showing, Ashland, Oregon, August 24-25th 2008, 2009,2012, 2013.
Mystic Garden Party, Music and Art Festival, DVD showing, Ashland, Oregon, July 2009,2010.
Glastonbury Goddess Festival, DVD showing main stage. Glastonbury, England, July 30- Aug 3rd, 2008.
Time For Our Power: Women Bringing Change to Our World, Conference, DVD Showing, Asheville, North Carolina, June 22nd, 2008.
Pacific Cultural Center, lecture/DVD showing. Santa Cruz, Ca., June 21, 2008