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Creative Living Retreats
Teaching Team 2024


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Arts Collaborator and Curator, Retreat Designer and Organiser, Villa Nilaya proprietor, Gallerist, Serendipitist! 

Even before I'd completed building Villa Nilaya in 2012, I knew that it was a perfect place to share with creative people who yearned for some peace and quiet to hear themselves think. At that time I was a full-time art gallery director, short of time, surrounded by artists, and a dedicated yoga practitioner.

It was from here that Creative Living Retreats evolved. I designed what I  was yearning for and invited friends to join me. Now, 30-something retreats later, we have refined our offerings to ensure that the essential reason for the retreat remains foremost - time to come to rest, find one's centre, and surrounded and inspired by this beautifully authentic part of Bali, exercise that innate creative instinct that we all have.


I hope that you'll be able to join us on a Creative Journey.   

Anna has a B.Sc in Medical Technology and an M.A. in Sienese Art History from the Courtauld Institute, University of London. She owned a fine art gallery for 18 years and has been creating Art+Yoga Retreats in Bali and Sri Lanka since 2011, and Spice Voyages Tours in India, Ethiopia and Morocco since 2007.

In 2024 she brings her experience of living on the Greek island of Hydra to the program, with three new painting and writing retreats in Autumn '24.



artist, designer and arts educator, UK

Este is a free-spirited artist with a background in textile design. She has been teaching on-line art courses since 2015, focusing on processes and concepts to make individuals' creativity blossom. These courses have gained an incredible following, as Este combines carefully-selected materials and techniques and shows different methods to be used for continued exploration. 

"When I teach, I keep guidelines tight and simplify processes, the knowledge gained enables the flourishing of new ideas when applied to individual art practices."

Este is a professional artist and designer. In addition to her paintings sold in galleries in the UK and internationally, her work is used in a variety of products ranging from wallpapers and textiles, homeware, ceramics, puzzles, stationary and book illustrations.

Born in South Africa, Este has been living in the UK since 1999.

Her educational background includes: HND Textile Design, Fine Art Printmaking, BA Hons Ceramics and Glass, MA in Contemporary Jewellery Design.

Este has presented in-depth art retreats with Anna Kwiecinska as part of the Creative Living Retreat series in Sri Lanka (2021) and Bali (2022, 2023), and joins us for our inaugural retreat offerings in Fes, Morocco and Hydra, Greece, in 2024.

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artist, designer and arts educator, USA

Professionally trained Abstract Artist and mother of two sons, Liz Murphy was born and raised in Surrey, England. Always creating and painting, she studied Graphic Design at Kingston University and has enjoyed a diverse creative career. Before starting her own company, her roles included creative directorships in London-based design agencies, designer of a range of kids' products, and illustrator of New York Times bestselling children’s books. 


Liz moved to the United States in 2005 with her family and settled in Montclair, NJ, just outside of New York City. Once her sons were grown, she decided to follow a childhood passion for creating beautiful, functional spaces, launching her own Interior Design and Staging firm, Liz Murphy Designs. 


In 2017, facing a health scare and recent divorce, Liz realized she had lost sight of who she was and where her joy came from. She decided that it was time she gave herself permission to dive into creative play, the way she remembered as a child. 


With a deep and varied well of creative experiences to draw from, free from the expectations and limitations of working to a client brief, Liz set out on a journey to find her voice and free her soul. Abstract expressionist became the platform through which she was able to get to know herself and explore her internal landscape.What she hadn’t anticipated was that quite how powerful a medicine her art practice was to become on her healing journey. 


Liz is now excited to be able to offer Creative Play workshops to those who are curious to play like a child, discover their inner artists and unleash their creativity.

Liz presented her first dynamic art retreat with Anna Kwiecinska as part of the Creative Living Retreat series in Bali 2023, and joins us in 2024 with two new retreats designed for 'starters' and 'improvers' to explore Abstract expressionism with gusto and good guidance.



artist, author, designer and arts educator, USA

Lisa Solomon was born in Tucson Arizona, but has lived most of her life in California. She currently resides in Oakland with her husband, kiddo, a 3 legged pit bull, a small scruffy dachshund/terrier mutt, a 3 legged cat, a fluffy gray kitty, a bearded dragon and many, many spools of thread [Gutterman is her favorite brand].

She received her BA in Art Practice from UC Berkeley in 1995 and her MFA from Mills College in 2003.

Her work is shown internationally and is in numerous public and private collections.



2019   Museum of Quilts and Textiles, San Jose, CA :: The Chroma Chronicles
2017    little paper planes, San Francisco, CA with Lea Redmond
2016    Palo Alto Art Center / Artist's Activating Communities - California Arts Council Grant, 
2015    the keepsake project :: Irving Street Projects, San Francisco, CA // catalogue available
2015    Kala Sustainable Fellowship, Berkeley, CA
2014    Underground Artist in Residence, Ulrich Museum of Art, Wichita, KS
2013    we/customize- artist in residence - Oakland Museum of Art
2007    artist in residence - Koumi Machi Museum, Nagoya, Japan









Lisa joins Creative Living Retreats in Bali, 2024, to present an in-depth exploration of her Colour Meditations project, aligning it with the sound healing through sound and colour work of Nada Yoga with Eva Kroes. 

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artist and arts educator, UK

1988-1991        Brighton Polytechnic : BA Honours (First) Degree in Illustration 
1991-1993        Royal College of Art London, MA RCA Painting 

Selected Exhibitions 
1993               The Artists' London, Museum of London 
1994               Corporeal Realities,  Ward- Nasse Gallery NYC, USA 
1999-2013      Medici Gallery London - various group shows
2000               Fresh Paint, Duke of York's headquarters with MacLean Fine Art - Art London
2004-2013     Six Solo shows Medici Gallery Cork at London
2005               Solo show Bohemia Galleries, York, UK
2006-2009    Solo shows, The Biscuit Factory Gallery, Newcastle, UK
2014,2017       Solo Shows - ALIF Gallery Fez, Morocco .
2016-2019      Solo show, Marshall Gallery London 
2017                Still Not Static, Thompson's Gallery Marylebone London
2021                Life under Lockdown, The Covid Refugee"
:Live solo show plus various livestreams and demos from his studio in Fez.

Public exhibitions and Awards :
1993               Daler Rowney Drawing Prize. National Portrait Gallery, London
2011                Finalist B.P Portrait Award,

2014               Portrait Artist of the year contestant 

Portrait Commissions and notable portraits include :

  • Lady Susan Wolfson of Sunningdale

  • Baroness Helena Kennedy QC(now KC) Mr James Laughland

  • Mr Simon Burgess

  • Rev S Godfrey, Anglican rev Valetta, Malta

Teaching and Lecturing:
1997 -2013     

  • Visiting professor in Life Drawing Kingston University London.

  • Guest lecturer at : Brighton University,

  • ALC language center Fez Morocco.


  • Guest lecturer, and various demonstrations to Various private groups in and around London museums, galleries and studios.

Languages : English,Spanish,French, Moroccan Arabic

Noel has presented Artist guided Painting and Drawing Tours in Portugal and Spain since 2018  and joins us for our inaugural retreat offerings in Hydra, Greece, in 2024.



artist and arts educator, Australia

I am a West Australian artist and art educator. The focus of my earlier art career was expressionistic portraiture, in both 2D mixed media and clay forms, examining aspects of the human condition and later a sense of place while residing in China for 4 yrs.


My recent work has been a response to the landscapes at the mouth of the Moore River, WA and the desert country in the West MacDonnell ranges, surrounding Alice Springs in Central Australia. I focus on layers of rich colour, collage, print and texture whether on clay or canvas.


  • Glimmer Gallery: Melbourne, Victoria Solo Exhibition: July 18- July 30, 2023

  • Earlyworks Gallery: South Fremantle, WA Solo Exhibition : Feb 25th- March 6,

  • 2022 Hale School Exhibition: Perth, WA Group exhibition : July 2015

  • Kurb Gallery: Perth, WA Group exhibition: May 3-10, 2014

  • Suzhou Gallery: Suzhou, China Group Exhibition : April 23 – 30, 2013

  • New Collectables Gallery: Fremantle, WA Solo exhibition : 1998

  • Sandalford Winery: Swan Valley, WA Group Exhibition :1996

  • Gomboc Gallery: Mid 1995

Nadine has presented 4 in-depth art retreats with Anna Kwiecinska as part of the Creative Living Retreat series in Bali and joins us for her new Portrait of Bali Plus in 2024.

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Freelance editor, writer, publisher, book coach and presenter, AUSTRALIA

Shelley Kenigsberg is a prominent freelance editor, book coach, writer, mentor, and trainer who’s worked in publishing for over 30 years.


Shelley’s favourite aspect of working with authors — those who’ve published and those hoping to, is the strong and vital collaboration that allows their writer’s best work to be on the page/screen. Shelley’s worked for decades in most genres (except scientific books) and has edited consistently for leading trade and education publishers: Penguin Random House, Macmillan, the kind press, McGraw-Hill, Brandl & Schlesinger and more. In the last 15 years, she's worked with a wide and inspiring range of independent authors whom she helps prepare to submit to publishers or pursue independent/self-publishing.

She has worked with corporate and government organisations and, more recently, been co-writer/ghost-writer on several memoirs. In past years, Shelley was a mentor with the Australian Society of Authors and, since last year, has a new role as a book coach. “With each project, I think the most important aspect is the opportunity to guide and help finesse a strong and beautiful story and bring it to publication.”

Her career in publishing began in the production department of large educational publisher Harcourt Brace Jovanovich. That meant a lot of cutting and pasting, scalpels and bromides and artboards.


From that to editor, senior editor, and then publisher she gained a solid understanding of the rigour and effort — as well as the thrill — of publishing, in her years with Harper Collins, Collins Dove, John Wiley, and Macquarie University.


In 1998, Shelley began her freelance career (as proprietor of S K Publishing, in Sydney) and in 2009 co-created Editing in Paradise (EiP) retreats. In 2011, Writing in Paradise emerged from the successful template begun as EiP.

Writing in Paradise has, since 2011, held annual retreats (save for the drought of the Covid years) in paradisal places — Bali, Byron Bay, Kangaroo Valley, Portsea — wherever the elements exist for inspiration and ideas to flow and creativity to be ignited.

Shelley was Head of Macleay College’s Book Editing and Publishing Diploma for 27 years.[1] Since 2009, she’s presented long and short courses in editing and writing — at literary festivals (Ubud Writers and Readers, Northern Rivers Writers Centre, Queensland Writers Centre, NT Writers Centre) at writers’ conferences (Asia Pacific Writers and Translators), and at writing centres in Australia, Indonesia and Singapore (Academy of Literature and Publishing).

She was president, NSW Editors Society 2000–‘03; vice president ‘03–‘06) and chaired committees for the Institute of Professional Editors (IPED), Australia.

Read more about Shelley Kenigsberg and the Writing in Paradise offering at:

After many years of presenting writing retreats in Bali, 2023 will see Shelley's first presentation at Villa Nilaya, with Anna Kwiecinska as part of the Creative Living Retreats series.

In 2024 you will find us on the island of Hydra, Greece presenting our inaugural "Writing by the Sea in Greece".

[1] I had the joy of seeing over 1600 students graduate, many to go on to management and publishing positions in most of Australia’s publishing houses.



Yoga -  NADA YOGA the yoga of Sound, Tone and Vibration,


Creative Living Retreats really are just that. Living to create, whilst we take time out for ourselves to retreat from all the concerns of our daily lives within an easeful environment to relax, restore, revive and experience the intoxicating pleasure of making art.


Yoga is a foundation element in Creative Living Retreats and one of the reasons that Anna created the retreats in the first place. The yoga teachers invited to participate with us must bring a constellation of very special qualities with them. 


Eva Kroes, originally from the Netherlands, lives and works in Bali. With her beautiful voice, and expertise with many instruments, including sound bowls, you will experience the yoga of sound, tone and vibration. It is the yogic practice of using sound vibrations to harmonise and balance our cells and energetic pathways (nadis) of any blockages that might prevent vital energy (prana) from flowing through.

Whilst this might be new to you, be assured, that contemporary medical research supports  these ancient Indian theories and practices. Above all, it's an absolutely beautiful way to experience sound, incorporating it into your yoga practice, and indeed, your art practice too! Each supports the other.

Join us, and experience the healing effects of the vibrational medicine preset in your voice and the intrinsic musical harmony within your being through the Art of Nada Yoga and Sound healing, as well as the physical yoga you're probably more familiar with.


With our small groups, you’re assured of plenty of individual attention. The yoga will test those who like to find their edge and extend, and nurture those who may be coming to yoga for the first time, after a long time, or with injuries.

Please connect with Anna or Eva to enquire if you have any concerns – there are always alternatives if yoga isn’t for you this time.


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