This month, we are excited to celebrate a worthy milestone for Creative Gateways, and it’s founder, Pilisa Rainbow Lady. Join us on Friday, September 8th from 6-9pm, as we toast to where we are now, and Pilisa’s success!
A Year to Celebrate
It’s an ecstatic feeling to reach our first anniversary this month at Creative Gateways. This collaborative family has grown in numbers and evolved together, always pushing and encouraging each other within their shared vision to develop as artists and people. Another reason to celebrate this month, is the birthday of our founder, Pilisa Rainbow Lady; curator of this diverse mix of talented professionals. Over this past year, we have seen many open studio events, classes, 1st Friday Art Walks, and artist spotlights, and there is no sign of slowing down. In fact, we expect this next year to be our most exciting yet!
“Coming together is a beginning; keeping together is progress; working together is success.” -Henry Ford
A History of Success
Pilisa’s inspired history is an unexpected one. It began in the IT industry, from which she retired at a young age, after helping create a software company that was among the first to implement the TCP/IP networking protocols on IBM PCs. As a way of giving back after such a tremendous early success, she founded the Ringing Rocks Foundation to help indigenous cultures around the world preserve their traditional healing and cultural practices. It’s there that her close relationship with several indigenous peoples helped pave the way for a life of connected inspiration.
“Spiritual growth and creativity are two sides of the same coin.” -Lada Ray
From Crafts to Crafted
Starting at an early age, Pilisa worked personally with many mediums from fiber arts to ceramics. She found great enjoyment in the crafting world. She would one day find herself disappointed as her close working relationship with a local craft supply shop ended when they moved out of state. Inspired by the local gap in the crafting niche, she decided in 2004 to take it into her own hands and opened S.A.G.E. Crafts, in West Sedona.
Over the next 2 years, her experimental forays into PMC (Precious Metal Clay) led her to the discovery of fused glass, in the way of embedding cabochons into many of her pieces. “That is when my love affair with glass began,” said Pilisa. “I knew that this is what I wanted to do.” So she set to work, acquiring another kiln or two, a pair of helping hands in the form of artist, Terry Israelson, and transformed her garage into a glass studio.
This would be the birthplace of her personal business, AMusinGlass. “It was a challenge, in that space. In the summer it would be sweltering hot, more so when the kilns were firing. In the winter, we found it difficult to work the various water-fed glass equipment with already stiff, frigid hands.”
“If you want something you have never had, you must be willing to do something you have never done.” -Thomas Jefferson
With total dedication, Pilisa kept her evolution in motion, constantly developing her makeshift space, and picking up new techniques with every class attended and method researched. Fatefully, one day, she received news through a mutual friend that Mary Fisher was thinking about selling her 4,400 sq. ft. studio space. She immediately leapt at the chance to use the historically rich building as the setting to bring her business to the next level. “Who wouldn’t want to be able to say ‘this was Mary Fisher’s studio,’ it’s an extremely inspiring place to spend time in, let alone create in!”
“And suddenly you know: It’s time to start something new and trust the magic of beginnings.” -Meister Eckhart
Every since her third retirement, leaving the Ringing Rocks Foundation in 2009, Pilisa has dedicated her time between AMusinGlass and avidly supporting other local start-up businesses through her participation in WEVO Global, the next generation networking organization for small business owners. Her vision of collaboration between local businesses now extends to the cooperation and cross-pollination within the current Creative Gateways facilities. In addition to a beautiful gallery space that extends through the halls, where visitors can browse art by our resident artists, she has created an open studio atmosphere, allowing enthusiasts to step over the thresholds in order to explore the creative spaces of our gifted family!
In collaboration with WEVO Global, we are very excited to celebrate the first anniversary of Creative Gateways and the birthday of our founder, Pilisa Rainbow Lady. Join us for a fun-filled evening featuring a variety of wines, by The Art of Wine Sedona, a beautiful cake by Rawr Bakery in Cottonwood, a plethora of complimentary small bites and sweet goodies, and live music by the talented Fitzhugh Jenkins. If you cannot make it to our Creative Celebrations Event, we encourage you to stop by the following weekend, during Surfing the Spontaneous, and Artist Spotlight of AMusinGlass artist, Terry Israelson.
Take advantage of our new Fall hours, now open 10-5 pm seven days a week.