BAC Community Spotlight: Dawn Ludwig
How did you arrive at the Brookline Arts Center?
Tell us about your background. How did you become interested in art?
What passions do you bring to the BAC community?
In addition to my passion for art, my other creative expression is food and cooking. About 22 years ago, I turned my studies as a chef from a hobby into reality. I quit my corporate job and bought a Culinary School. I was fascinated with specialty diets and food allergies just as the awareness of these issues was emerging in the food industry. I ended up training chefs in specialty diets for 15+ years. Then, about four years ago, I combined my training in French cooking with my roots in Southern/Southwestern Cooking (I’m a Texan originally), and my studies in specialty diets and nutrition, to help my husband, Dr. David Ludwig, write the book Always Hungry? Conquer Cravings, Retrain Your Fat Cells, and Lose Weight Permanently. My passion became one of helping people realize that having extra weight was not their fault as we showed them how to get their bodies working with them rather than against them, and helped remove shame, blame, and guilt from their relationship with food. As I translated David’s scientific research into simple, delicious, and practical recipes (all with options to accommodate vegetarian, egg-free, dairy-free, and gluten-free, of course) this passion for food and helping people came together and changed people’s lives. The book became a NYTimes Bestseller and led us to write the follow-up cookbook Always Delicious, which was published earlier this year. After publishing two books, I finally made time to incorporate art back into my life (beyond my kid’s art projects). And the BAC was right there when I needed them. I started taking a weekly class, have taken every session since then, and will continue as long as they're offered.
What do you enjoy most about the BAC?
There’s so much to love!!
- I love the way that BAC classes help keep my passion for art alive and expand my abilities far beyond what I ever thought possible. The classes challenge me to use new tools and media, try new techniques, and explore my creativity on a weekly basis.
- I appreciate the summer and vacation camps for kids. My 10-year old son has done several camps and loves each and every one. The BAC allows him to be fully creative and free with his love for art. It’s a quality I want to continue to encourage as he grows.
- I recently discovered the community outreach side of BAC when I participated in a charity rowing competition. One of the teams was rowing to raise money for the BAC. Discovering that the BAC is bringing free art classes and projects to underserved communities made me love them even more.
What was your favorite childhood art project?
The Japanese Printmaking class that I took at the Museum of Fine Art in Dallas was a highlight of my childhood art experience. Being chosen as one of only two kids to represent our school was an honor and a privilege. Having a teacher voice her appreciation for my art and choose to challenge me to a new opportunity deeply affected my art journey.
Who are some of your art heroes?
I have a wide range of art heroes. I love to travel, and I look for art everywhere I go. My earliest inspirations were from when I lived in Europe in college and explored so much incredible art from the Impressionists nature in muted tones to Joan Miró's surreal shapes in primary colors. I couldn’t get enough of all of the art everywhere I went. My Texas roots and activist spirit inspired a love for Diego Rivera and Frida Khalo. Most recently Dale Chihuly’s glass art has captured and mesmerized me.