Mindfulness to be the Focus of PechaKucha Night at SJMA 
February 16

Release date 
Thursday, February 2, 2017

SAN JOSE, California (February 1, 2017) — The San Jose Museum of Art and PechaKucha San Jose will present a PechaKucha Night on Thursday, February 16, 2017 at 7 PM. Speakers will use the engaging, fast-paced presentation style of PechaKucha to explore topics related to mindfulness in connection with the new exhibition Your Mind, This Moment: art and the practice of attention. Scheduled to speak are artist and athlete Gregory Burns; Diana Clark of the Graduate Theological Union, Berkeley; author and poet Sarah de Sousa; Liz Gonzalez, co-founder of Silicon Valley DeBug; Deborah Greene, founder and CEO of LiveaMoment; Justin Keller, senior marketing director at Whil; and Gerald Sakamoto of San Jose Buddhist Church Betsuin. Ric Bretschneider, founder of the San Jose branch of PechaKucha 20x20, will emcee. The galleries will be open from 5 to 9 PM, and docents Kathleen Callan and Evelyn Neely will lead a yoga-inspired introduction to the exhibition at 6 PM. Tickets are $5 after 5 PM (free to members), which includes the PechaKucha and museum admission. Tickets are available online at sjmusart.org/calendar. 

PechaKucha 20x20 is a simple presentation format where speakers show 20 images, each for 20 seconds. The images advance automatically as the presenter speaks. PechaKucha Nights are informal and fun gatherings where creative people get together and share their ideas, work, and thoughts on any topic. PechaKucha Night is devised, shared, and supported by Klein Dytham Architecture.

Your Mind, This Moment is an experimental exhibition that presents contemporary art works as objects of meditation. Drawn from the Museum’s permanent collection, it brings together the increasingly popular interest in mindfulness practices with the process of looking at art. The typical museum visitor spends an average of 15 seconds looking at a work of art; this exhibition invites viewers to slow down. Guided audio meditations by Bay Area mindfulness teachers and an unusual installation design that encourages solitude will invite visitors to take time for contemplation. Your Mind This Moment will be on view at SJMA February 17 through August 27. Third Thursday visitors may preview the exhibition 5 – 9 PM on February 16. From 6 to 6:30 PM, Callan and Neely, both SJMA docents who are also yoga instructors, will lead an in-gallery experience that will include simple breath and body-awareness techniques to encourage personal connection to the art on view.    


Gregory Burns is an athlete and artist who has exhibited in a dozen countries for over thirty years. He was recently honored as the “2016 Sports Artist of the Year” by the United States Sports Academy. He competed in the 1992, 1996, and 2000 Paralympic Games as a member of the USA Disabled Swim Team, capturing six gold and silver medals and breaking five world records. Burns has published three books in English and Mandarin and has been featured on CNN, BBC, CNBC, ESPN, CCTV, and CNA as well as in the AWSJ, Time Magazine and China Daily.

Diana Clark is a professor of Buddhist Studies at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley. In addition to teaching academic courses on meditation and Buddhism, she teaches at the Insight Meditation Center in Redwood City. She has cumulatively spent more than a year in silent meditation retreats and has a PhD in biochemistry in addition to her graduate degree in Buddhist studies.

Sarah de Sousa holds a BA in modern thought and literature from Stanford University and an MA in counseling psychology from Santa Clara University. An author and published poet, she has contributed to numerous publications on the subject of mindfulness and clinical psychology, including contributions to the Oxford Handbook of Positive Psychology and the Handbook of Mindfulness in Education. Her poetry was recently nominated for a 2017 Pushcart Prize.

Liz Gonzalez is co-founder, writer, and editor at Silicon Valley De-Bug, the media and organizing collective. She leads a weekly meditation circle and practices energy healing. Gonzales works as an organizer on issues ranging from education to worker’s rights to immigration. Her interest in natural healing modalities includes hypnotherapy and Pranic Healing. 

Deborah Greene is the founder and CEO of LiveaMoment, a movement dedicated to the worldwide creation and funding of peace initiatives. The LiveaMoment app is a platform to connect people globally in daily moments of pause, teach emotional intelligence, and promote unity among groups. She recently served as the interim national director of the Peace Alliance, a nonprofit dedicated to peace building, education, and advocacy.

Justin Keller is the senior marketing director at Whil, a San Francisco-based company that provides digital wellness training based on neuroscience, positive psychology, and mindfulness for employers and schools. Keller has spent the last 13 years doing high-tech marketing for everything from early stage startups to enterprises while avocationally practicing mindfulness. He has three undergraduate degrees from Indiana University and an MBA from Purdue University. 

Gerald Sakamoto is a minister at San Jose Buddhist Church Betsuin in San Jose’s Japantown. He holds a BA in Liberal Studies, Buddhism, from the University of Hawaii and was ordained Jodo Shinshu, Nishi Hongwanji in Kyoto, Japan, in 1974. He was National Ministers Association Chair from 2001 to 2005. He is currently advisor to the Santa Clara County/Monterey Bay Boy Scout Council, a member of Friends of Human Relations, and a trustee of the Institute of Buddhist Studies. 



Evelyn Neely has worked as an in-gallery docent at the San Museum of Art for more than 20 years and currently serves on the museum’s board of trustees. She is a practitioner of both mindfulness and meditation and is a certified yoga instructor.  

Kathleen Callan brings over twenty years teaching experience and elite athletic development to the process of yoga.  An ERYT (Experience Registered Yoga Teacher) at the 200-hour Level, she is also a docent in SJMA’s Let’s Look at Art program and serves on the Board of Directors of LLAA. She is a former trustee of the San Jose Museum of Art


The San Jose Museum of Art celebrates new ideas, stimulates creativity, and inspires connection with every visit. Welcoming and thought-provoking, the Museum rejects stuffiness and delights visitors with its surprising and playful perspective on the art and artists of our time. SJMA is located at 110 South Market Street in downtown San Jose, California. The museum is open Tuesday through Sunday, 11 AM to 5 PM and until 8 PM or later on the third Thursday of each month. For more information, call 408-271-6840 or visit www.SanJoseMuseumofArt.org.

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Programs at the San Jose Museum of Art are made possible be generous support from The David and Lucile Packard Foundation, The Margaret A. Cargill Foundation, Yvonne and Mike Nevens, The Lipman Family Foundation, and a Cultural Affairs Grant from the City of San José.