A Therapist with HEArt

Sara Goldstein, Staff Writer

On most days, Clara Bossie can be found tucked away in her office at Therapeutic Oasis of the Palm Beaches.  It isn’t your typical office though.  Clara’s workspace reflects her personality, which is best described as waggish.  The seven to nine clients she sees daily often are seen in Clara’s art studio, where any supply ranging from glitter to buttons can be found.  There is a mindfulness corner adorned with soft, fluffy pillows and Beanie Babies.  Her bookshelves are adorned with children’s books and a portrait of Clara’s mini toy schnauzer, Julz, who also puts in as much time in the office as her owner.

Clara Talking
Clara Bossie, LMFT, speaks with HEArt Show supporters.

It is hard to imagine that a busy professional with a full workload could possibly coordinate an annual fundraising event without the help of paid professionals.  Yet, Ms. Bossie has managed to do so for the past four years.  The soft-spoken therapist is very clear on her ambitious goals, which include growing the HEArt (Healing Through Expressive Arts) Show, creating a “Tri-Chillin” event (a triathlon for relaxation junkies), and eventually running as mayor for the city of Delray Beach.  Coming from someone else, these goals would appear to be a farce.  However, those that know Clara are well aware of the force behind this educator, therapist, and artist.

This year’s HEArt Show: “A Hollywood Story”, sponsored by Art for Alzheimer’s, took place on Friday, February 5, 2016, benefitting the Louis & Anne Green Memory and Wellness Center of the Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing at Florida Atlantic University.  The HEArt Show’s mission is to promote awareness of the healing power of expressive arts and to raise funds for organizations that utilize art in the healing process.  In other words, the show reflects Clara’s unique background, aiming to teach, help, and encourage others to embrace creativity.

The red carpet was unrolled for the evening’s guests, who entered the transformed space of the Memory and Wellness Center.  Pop up installations displayed pieces from professional and amateur artists.  Featured artists included Salvatore Principe, Brendan Murphy, Charles Edward Soto, Amanda Johnson, Ona Steele, Pat Kaufman, and Bobby Grossman.  Attendees sampled culinary delights provided by Silver Sac Catering and Saltwater Brewery against a backdrop of live music.

In addition to the art display, the HEArt Show invited everyone to create his or her own art in the community art studio.  No surprise that the most popular subject of the evening were hearts!  Live artists included Tatiana Farkas, Matthew Guhl, Joshua Isla, and Lori Practico from Girl Noticed, who created a one-of-a-kind piece for the dedicated volunteers of the HEArt Show. 

Special guests of the evening included Louis & Anne Green, Jan Savarick, Dr. María Ordóñez, Dr. Benjamin Bensadon, Dr. Marlaine C. Smith, Dr. Lynne Dunphy, Dr. Priti Kothari, and Patricia Thomas.  Nearly 225 guests came out to support the HEArt Show and $14,500 was raised for the Louis & Anne Green Memory and Wellness Center.  As for Clara, she is already busy planning next year’s show. Bossie is dedicated to spreading the belief that “…the creative self is the healthiest self” – she is an unstoppable force for good.

For more information and event highlights, please visit HEArtshow.org.

2nd Annual HEArt Show Fundraiser a Huge Success!

It wasn’t your typical fundraising event.  Fancy invitations were not sent to a targeted donor mailing list, nor was the event publicized months in advance.  Directed by Clara Bossie, LMFT, the “event committee” consisted of a group of staff members dedicated to a nonprofit organization close to their hearts.  An abundance of creative vision combined with passionate and enthusiastic supporters resulted in the HEArt Show (Healing Through Expressive Arts), benefitting The Body Positive.

Therapeutic Oasis of the Palm Beaches was transformed for the sold out event, which took place on February 6th, 2015.  Our building twinkled against the sunset’s dusk, with the landscaping highlighted in hues of blue and purple.  Guests were greeted by live harp music and invited to explore multiple galleries.  While enjoying specially prepared culinary creations, attendees participated in body art, live videography, and hands-on art in our collaborative painting studio.

Over forty featured artists contributed pieces to the HEArt Show.  Whimsical décor and special lighting complimented artwork, which included mixed media, photography, jewelry, fashion, and sculpture.  Featured local artists included Salvatore Principe, Ona Steele, Charles Soto, as well as art students from both Atlantic Community and Boca Raton Community High Schools.  The live auction featured two one-of-a-kind pieces created during the event in our live studio.

Whether attendees were just enjoying the sights or purchasing exquisite artwork, everyone who participated helped to support The Body Positive.  Founded in 1996, The Body Positive’s mission is to teach people how to overcome conflicts with their bodies so they can lead happier, more productive lives.  The organization’s mission is spread through public workshops, student leadership training and mentoring, professional training, and online activism.  Connie Sobczak, Executive Director of The Body Positive, was thrilled to attend the HEArt Show.  Guests were able to receive signed copies of Ms. Sobczak’s book, Embody: Learning to Love Your Unique Body (and quiet that critical voice!).

The personal touches and intimate atmosphere of the HEArt Show made it truly unique in comparison to other fundraising endeavors.  Generous underwriters, caring volunteers, and talented artists worked together to create a memorable evening, with over $7,000 raised to support The Body Positive (visit TheBodyPositive.com).  The HEArt Show proved that Einstein was on to something when he shared that: “Imagination is more important than knowledge.”  All of the fundraising expertise combined couldn’t have reproduced the heart and soul that went into this extraordinary event.  We hope we have inspired you to become involved in next year’s show!

Sara Goldstein, Staff Writer