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, 20 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.
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).
In 2023 Este presents Florabunda Plus in Bali, in both June and July.
Freelance editor, writer, publisher, trainer 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, 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, she’s worked with a wide range of authors in many genres. 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. 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: www.writinginparadise.com.au
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.
 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.
Textile designer, painter and arts educator, UK
Helen's graphic design expertise steadily expanded to her role as Creative Director, Harper Collins Publishers Design Studio, Sydney, Australia, during which time she won awards for the best designed non-fiction and childrens' books.
Helen Holds a Master’s degree in Art from the UNSW College of Fine Art (COFA), Sydney Australia, majoring in painting, and regularly exhibits
Returning to the UK, she created her studio in Dorset, where she also runs regular workshops in Eco leaf printing, indigo and natural dyeing and Shiori techniques, drawing on experience gained from living in Laos, where she learned from the skills of the master dyers techniques.
In addition to hands-on creative workshops, she coaches young adults who wish to follow a creative career in graphic design, publishing, advertising, branding, illustration and fine art.
- The Etches Collection, Kimmerage Bay
- Traidhos Residency Program – Prem Tinsulanonda International School, Mae Rim, Thailand
- Houey Hong Vocational Training for woman – Vientiane, Laos
Her Tertiary educational background includes:
- Masters in Fine Art, University of NSW (COFA), Sydney, Australia.
- BA. Hons. Degree in Design, Nottingham Trent University, UK.
- HND in Art & Design, Southampton University, UK.
- BTEC National Diploma Business and Finance, Bournemouth University, UK.
2017 – yearly, 2022 - Purbeck Arts week - Open studio
and PAW: open studio, Rollington Barn, Durlston Country Park, Boilerhouse studio 3 and
- Group show, Chester Art Gallery, UK
- Group show, Dotart, Liverpool, UK
- Solo Show, i:cat gallery, Vientiane, Laos
- Collaboration with Catherine O’Brien – The Little House, Vientiane, Laos
- Group show, i:cat gallery, Vientiane, Laos
- Group show, Fowlers Gap, COFASpace, Sydney, Austraila
- Group Show, Prints, COFASpace, Sydney, Austraila
- Group Show, Drawings, COFASpace, Sydney, Austraila
- Group show, African faces, COFASpace, Sydney, Austraila
- Group show, Glen Street Theatre, Northern Expressions, Sydney, Austraila
- Group show, Dale Thomas, Northern Expressions, Sydney, Austraila
- Solo show, Our Silent Voices, MLC gallery, Ultimo, Sydney, Austraila
- Solo show, artsconnect, Sydney, Austraila
- Group show, Mosman Art Gallery, Sydney, Austraila
- Group show, Northern Expressions, Sydney, Austraila
- Group show, Ryde Art Show, Sydney, Austraila
- Solo show, Surprise, GIG gallery, Glebe, Sydney, Austraila
- Group show, Manly Arts festival, Sydney, Austraila
- Group show, Warringah Art Show, Sydney, Austraila
- Solo show, Investment Technology, Sydney, Austraila
From 2012 Helen runs her own studio in Dorst UK
2022 – Illustration Agent, The Bright Agency, March 2019 - March 2022
2005 – Dec 2012, Creative Director, Harper Collins Publishers Design Studio, Sydney, Australia
2007 – Art assistant, Contempo group, Art Gallery NSW, Sydney, Australia
1997 - Nov 1998 – Typesetter, Guardian Newspaper, London, UK
1997 - Oct 1997 – Graphic Designer, Zest Magazine, London, UK
1997 - Graphic Designer, Marie Claire Magazine, London UK
1997 - Picture Researcher, For Him Magazine (FHM), London UK
2012 - Hiroshima Nagasaki (Paul Ham, HarperCollins) design by HarperCollins Design Studio, 2012 - Winner of Best Designed Non-fiction book, APA Australian Book designer awards
2011 - The Tomorrow Book design by HarperCollins Design Studio, Winner of The Best Designed Children’s Book
In 2023 Helen will present Bali Ecologia, a textile retreat in Bali with Anna Kwiecinska, as part of Creative Living Retreats
Yogi, yoga instructor, Shakti Feminine Embodiment Dance Instructor, BALI
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.
Angelina La Miette joined us in 2019 and we are delighted to welcome here back for 2021. Living in Bali, and originally from eastern Australia, Angelina brings deep heart, poetry and passion to her solid yoga teaching experience. Supportive and authentic, we’ve all felt so connected to one another as a result of time shared in Angelina’s classes … and for those who yearn to dance and float on the evening breeze … you won’t be disappointed - Angelina is a soulfully inspired dance instructor too!
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 Angelina to enquire if you have any concerns – there are always alternatives if yoga isn’t for you this time.
Angelina has been working with Anna at Creative Living Retreats in Bali since 2019.
We extend to you a warm welcome to join us on all of the retreats in Bali in 2023