Name: Maria Katzman
Lives in: New York City, USA
From: I grew up in Wilmette, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago in the United States
Job: I am a painter, and I teach art to children and adults, mostly teaching art in private schools in NYC.
In 2017-2018 I went to Greece to teach at ACS (The American Community School.) I did a series of watercolors when I was visiting Paros, Antiparos and Kefalonia focusing on the landscape. You can see them here.
Since returning to NYC I started an after school organization called On-Site Art where I take students to a different museum or gallery each week. I started the On-Site Art program so that students could be introduced to the great artwork in NYC and see it firsthand by visiting these institutions. To see images of student work please visit on-siteart.com
Tell us your first three jobs (ever!): When I was 15, I worked at Browns Chicken, next I was a waitress at Dave’s Italian Kitchen in Evanston, next to the town I grew up in. That restaurant had quite a following and when it closed recently after 44 years as a great dining institution, I was sad to learn the news. I still remember Dave and had great fun as a waitress! My third job was teaching at the Nelson Atkins Museum in Kansas City, Mo. I was in college at the Kansas City Art Institute.
Zodiac sign?: Leo
What do you love about Greece? My year living in Greece was wonderful in many ways. I lived in a beautiful spacious 2- bedroom apartment in Aghia Pareskevi. I had beautiful light, views and balconies off every room. I loved my landlady, and she cared for the apartment with beautiful furniture, decor, and marble floors. Coming from a studio apartment in NYC this was a welcome change! I
l really enjoyed my colleagues at ACS, and I love the friendliness of the Greek people. This was a huge part of my experience, simple things going to the neighborhood small grocery shop where I was able to buy organic produce. The friendships I developed with the owner and one of the employees made my life easier and really enjoyable. I saw them several times a week, and I was truly sad when I had to say goodbye.
The beauty everywhere you look is extraordinary! Athens is a unique city, and I was able to explore many of the neighborhoods, and have special memories. I love the views especially of the Acropolis and have a friend who has a wonderful view, as well as visiting Lynn’s rooftop!
I traveled a lot and drove all through the Peloponnese, I spent Thanksgiving in Nafplio and went swimming in November! I also went to Re-Green, an Eco- Culture Center for Tina’s yoga retreat. I traveled again the summer of 2018 throughout the Peloponnese, on the advice of a friend and explored the lower fingers starting in Monemvasia and ending up in Pilos. Then I made my way to Kefalonia. I also went to Paros which has a wonderful energy, and I fell in love with the landscape and the colors of the hills and mountains.
Tell us something most people don’t know about you: I love swing and ballroom dancing. I studied modern dance when I was a student and performed with a dance troupe when I was a freshman in college.
Where we are most likely to find you in Lynn’s Kundalini Yoga? The first weekend I spent in Greece when I moved, I met Lynn! I had signed up for her Kundalini Boat cruise where we went swimming in the Aegean Sea and did a yoga class on the boat. It was a wonderful time and a great introduction to Greece. Maybe now I’ll try a Zoom class. 🙂
The first time you tried Kundalini Yoga? I tried Kundalini Yoga at a studio in NYC.
Tell us your top tip to combat climate change: I recycle, I walk as much as possible, and I sold my car. I support local farmers by shopping at the farmer markets and eat organic foods. I now have a water filter system and no longer have to lug water to my apartment and deal with plastic bottles!