Created, Compiled and Edited by
Leslie Anne Franklin
About the Editor
Here are a few of our storytellers
Dr. Lawrence Blair - Introduction
An anthropologist, author, lecturer, and film-maker resident in Indonesia for decades, UK-born Lawrence Blair is an internationally recognized authority on Indonesia. He wrote, presented, and co-produced (with brother Lorne) Ring of Fire, a TV film series on the Indonesian islands that won two Emmy awards and was aired in sixty-three nations. The companion book, Ring of Fire, chronicling ten years of adventure filming in Indonesia, became a top-ten bestseller.
Bruce W. Carpenter - Introduction Vol. II
Anglo-American Bruce W. Carpenter is a respected art historian and Bali resident who has authored and co-authored more than twenty books on the art, history, and culture of Indonesia and Bali, including the newly released Heroes, Gods and Guardians (2021). He currently resides on Sanur Beach and is actively involved in numerous cultural projects.
Melbourne-born Janet DeNeefe is the founder and director of the Ubud Food Festival, established in 2015, and the Ubud Writers and Readers Festival, established in 2004, one of the region's most successful and important literary events. It has recently been named as among the world's top six by the UK Telegraph. She is the proprietor of Indus and Casa Luna restaurants, as well as Honeymoon Guesthouse. DeNeefe also runs Casa Luna Cooking School. Her books Fragrant Rice and The Food of My Island Home chart her ongoing love affair with Balinese food, culture, and traditions.
Rio Helmi was born in 1954 to an Indonesian diplomat father and a Turkish mother. A photographer and writer, Rio has been capturing images of Asia and writing since 1978. His work can be seen in magazines, documentaries, and more than twenty large-format photographic books.
Diana Darling is a freelance writer and editor. She is the author of The Painted Alphabet, a novel based on a Balinese tale, and former editor-in-chief of Latitudes magazine, and has published numerous essays on Balinese society. She was born in the United States and moved to Europe in 1973, where she lived in Italy and Paris, carrying out independent work as a sculptor. She has lived in Bali since 1980 and is married to A. A. Alit Ardi of Ubud, where they live with their children and grandchildren.
John Schumann, lead singer-songwriter of the Australian folk-rock band Redgum and the creator of the song “I’ve Been to Bali Too,” first went to Bali in 1976. He formed a lifelong friendship with Tjokorda Krishna Suharsana and was adopted by Krishna’s family—“brothers from a different mother,” according to Krishna’s mother, Henni.
This story, written shortly after the Kuta bombing in 2002, reflects on friendship, family, culture, the old Bali, and the two-edged sword of tourism. It is particularly resonant in these days of COVID-19.
Peter Steenbergen was born and lived in 1948 in Amsterdam until he found Bali in 1973. After marrying Made Masih in 1974, they both developed the concept of turning a warung into a more mainstream food destination. In 2019 they celebrated Made’s Warung fiftieth year of existence and are still going strong with outlets in Bali, Jakarta, Amsterdam, and at the airport in Bali.
Terry Tarnoff is the author of four novels, one play, and ten screenplays. He spent eight years traveling throughout Europe, Africa, and Asia in the 1970s, where he helped run the Spirit Catcher Bookstore in Kathmandu and co-founded the Anjuna Jam Band in Goa. He currently lives in San Francisco and has frequently given readings at City Lights Bookstore, the Beat Museum, and bookstores throughout the Bay Area.
Rucina Ballinger is a writer who co-authored the book Balinese Dance, Drama and Music: An Introduction to Balinese Performing Arts with Wayan Dibia. She has been a dancer, a comedienne who founded Grup Gedebong Goyang, a director of nonprofits such as YKIP and Desa Les Community Center, a tour guide that worked with the Obamas in 2017 when they came to Bali, and a teacher/lecturer on Balinese culture. She has lived in the same house in Peliatan since 1988 and is currently there with her two sons, their wives, and their children. She originally came to Bali in 1974 to study dance and theater.
Nigel Mason arrived in Bali in 1980, fell in love with a local girl named Yanie, and opened a small restaurant that was named after her. They went on to kick-start Ubud's adventure industry in 1989 when they opened the first white-water rafting company, followed by rescuing critically endangered Sumatran elephants—and making chocolates, among other things—all under the heading of Mason Adventures.
Fantuzzi is a global troubadour and ambassador of joy. His charismatic, sensual energy pulses through music that never fails to get people moving. A “NewYorican,” Fantuzzi's Afro-Caribbean roots and global adventures showcase his unique presence. Historically, he's regularly spotted all across the world supporting and collaborating with leading musicians in spiritual and musical gatherings, often as an MC as well as a star performer.
Jane Hawkins has been a teacher, clothing designer, CEO, retail consultant, leader of her own personal development retreats, and founder of a residential community. Jane has climbed Mt. Kenya, Mt. Kilimanjaro, and the Himalayas and followed spiritual yatras to Mt. Kailash and Gangotri Glacier, the source of the Ganges. She and her husband, Peter, reside in Bali with two wonderful sons, Morgan and Jamie, and their exceptional cat, Joki.
Stephanie Buffington has been an author, TV producer, and fashion designer. She first came to Bali in 1980, and her love of Bali has brought her back just about every year since. She now travels the world with her company Tribal Music Tours and, when home in Los Angeles, facilitates Rhythmic Prayer circles at the Sacred Rhythm Lodge.
Michael Palmieri is an American explorer and a California surfer who headed south to Mexico in the early years of the Vietnam War to dodge the draft and ended up on the hippie trail, bouncing from Mexico to Europe to India to Nepal to Afghanistan before alighting in the paradise of prelapsarian Bali. Once there, he began exploring the most remote parts of Indonesia, specializing in the Dayak tribes of Borneo, acquiring pieces of tribal art that now reside in museums and private collections around the world.
Rhett Hutchence is a Bali-based artist who has lived more than half his life outside Australia. Best-selling author and ex-naughty boy, his current business, Skull Bali, produces unique chic skull art and contemporary fashion.
Anthony ‘Pablo’ Gentile
Anthony Pablo Gentile was born in New York City. Pablo attended the New York School of Visual Arts, where he studied fine arts, graphic design, and 3D design, and studied literature at New York University.
He first came to Bali in 1973 on a trip around the world over land and sea (no planes!) between high school and attending university. When he returned and was asked where the most beautiful place was, he answered without hesitation, “Bali.” Those sixteen months on the road were the beginning of more than thirty years of travel to all corners of the earth. His paintings and sculpture have been widely exhibited and appear in collections worldwide. He currently divides his time between studios in New York City, Stockholm, and Bali.
Soosan Suryawan was born in Massachusetts and began painting at the age of five. She received her Bachelor of Art from Rhode Island School of Design. Upon graduating, she left for Bali at the age of 21 and fell in love with the culture and with Wana Suryawan. They were blessed with three children.
Carolyn Tyler is an American activist and entrepreneur in the field of design. She grew up in Southern California, where she was an advertising art director and copywriter, and emigrated to Ubud, Bali, in 1993 to begin a career in jewelry design, utilizing the talents of highly skilled Balinese artisans for her, hand-crafted eco-friendly gold jewelry. After successfully overcoming a long-term health challenge caused by exposure to a secret nuclear accident in Los Angeles, she is now creating a unique retreat in Bali: Lumina Wellness Sanctuary, based on the healing protocols that saved her life. In her spare time, Carolyn enjoys writing protest songs in the “dark-comedy/satire” genre, and is working on a musical play called “Oh, Corona!”, using the musical score to the Broadway classic, “Oklahoma!
Anita Lococo, originally from California, has been a world traveler her entire adult life. She graduated from the University of San Francisco with a degree in anthropology, while also learning traditional dances from around the world. She first traveled to Bali in 1975. Later, she became a fashion designer under her own brand and then an art dealer in the US. Having lived for five years in Japan and a year in Brazil, she then decided to permanently move to Bali in 1991, starting the first real estate company on the island, called Bali Tropical Villas, which operated for twenty-four years. Anita is now a painter and has written books such as Living in Bali and Women in Bali. She has been living in Bali for the past thirty years with her husband, Alec.
Alissa Stern was born in New York and is the founder of BASAbali, a collaboration of artists, writers, environmentalists, and language advocates who aim to keep the cultural, linguistic, and physical environment of Bali strong. Alissa and her husband live outside of Washington, DC, and just became empty-nesters after having raised three wonderful boys.
Alexander Leon was born in Cuba. Alexander’s family moved to Sydney, Australia, via San Salvador, Guatemala, and Melbourne. He has lived in Bali; Austria; the Amazon jungle with shamans; and Sri Lanka, where he ran a post-tsunami charity. He trekked to Everest base camp. He currently resides in New South Wales, Australia, with his wife and second child. Music is his passion.
Doris Caitak was born in Montreal, Canada. She believes that every life is a canvas each person creates day by day. She has lived in New York City, Italy, Java, and Bali. She met her Italian husband in Bali. Together they opened a series of successful boutiques on the Emerald Coast of Sardinia, where she and her husband imported exotic decorative furnishings for the villas of movies stars and other VIPs. In the cottage industry of Bali, they also produced clothing, jewelry, shoes, and other various accessories for these same VIPs. She has one daughter and lives in a home in Florida designed by her late husband.
Sally Herrero grew up on the mid-north coast of NSW, Australia. An avid traveler, over the years, Sally has enjoyed paella in Spain, walked the stairs of the Eiffel Tower, island-hopped through Thailand, cooked a tagine in Morocco, and received a rice blessing in a Balinese ceremony from a village priest. Not even a terrible bout of food poisoning and a hair-raising plane ride on a twenty-seat aircraft has dampened her enthusiasm for traveling. She resides in a coastal abode, and her bottles of sand from the many beaches she has trekked take pride in her living room.
Vitek Czernuszyn was born in Poland a long long time ago. He now lives in Australia with his wife and eighteen-year-old son, where he manufactures vodka. Having no fear of trying something new, he has tried many things—succeeded at some, failed at many—but continues to believe that despite having both, you learn more from crisis than success. His simple philosophy in life is if you’re not hurting others, you can do what you like.
Arthur Karvan was born in April 1943 in Australia to Greek parents. He married Gabrielle Godard in 1972 and had three children: Rupert, Claudia, and Paris. Arthur was involved in building restoration and construction in the inner suburbs of Sydney. He created the infamous Arthur's nightclub in Darlinghurst, Sydney, in 1976. In Bali, he designed fabrics and produced traditional method batik fabrics. He also designed numerous restaurant venues specializing in Trompe-l’œil and painted finishes. He presently resides in Bali.
Peter Dittmar is an artist who taught art for fifteen years in Munich, Germany, after which he lived and worked as a freelance artist in Bali, Indonesia. He has had more than one hundred solo exhibitions in thirteen countries and has taken part in international art fairs. His art has been sought by many private and public collections, including the renowned ARMA Museum in Ubud.
Mark Bloom has been trading in Bali since 1984. Also known as Joe Komodo, he is the founder of the world-famous clothing brand Komodo located in London, Bali, and Kathmandu and a pioneer of eco-fashion, a part-time poet, a purveyor of fine parties, and the first snowboarder in Tibet. Mark was part of the team that climbed Mt. Aucanquilcha in Chile, the highest point closest to the sun on Millennium day; subsequently presented the mission at the Royal Geographic Society. A minor philanthropist funding schools in Tibet, Nepal, Bali, and Sumatra through Lucy Wisdom’s S.O.S.org (Sumatran Orangutan Society ) and the Tibet Relief Fund.org. Mark lives in north London with his partner Twanna and son, Samson, who he can no longer beat at golf! (bio edit by Mark Bloom)
Patricia Chaparro is an artist, born in Bogota, Colombia. She has traveled throughout her life and lived in Italy, France, and Indonesia and now currently resides in Asheville, NC. Her work is a fascinating amalgamation of South American, Asian, and European cultures and is especially inspired by her many years living in Bali, Indonesia. Her paintings have been shown and appreciated around the globe, from cites in the United States to Brazil, Colombia, and Indonesia.
Rachel Lovelock is a freelance writer originally from England. When she first visited Bali in 1982, the island’s magic captured her heart, but it wasn’t until 1998 that she returned and knew within five days that she wanted to stay. Bali has been her full-time home ever since.
Michael Diffenderffer has been an entrepreneur all his life, ran his own contracting and trading business in Saudi Arabia, sailed on a teakwood sailboat from Bali to Australia, motorcycled from Saudi Arabia to Switzerland, recorded Tibetan music in India for Nonesuch Records, owned a champion racehorse in England, developed real estate in Europe, was CEO of a cargo airline in Hawaii, dabbled in making ethanol out of garbage in NYC, and sold mass-produced oleo-graphed paintings all over Europe. He currently lives in Underhill Center, Vermont, with his beautiful wife Emily, two daughters, and son, in a restored 1840s farmhouse on the river. They are soon opening a cafe and co-op workspace.
Helena Darsana was born in Melbourne, Australia. She moved to Bali with her mother in 1980, married a Balinese from Ubud in 1996, took on Indonesian citizenship the same year, gave birth to her daughter in 1998, and still lives in Bali to this present day.
Atta Melvin is a former stewardess for United Airlines, which gave her a love of travel. She has lived in and often worked as a volunteer in Nepal, Mexico, and Bali, Indonesia, where she resides today. She has also lived in Osho's ashram in Pune, India, worked on the commercial fishing boat 'Salty Dog' out of Sausalito, and performed in many theatrical productions with the Theatre FireFly in Bali. She is an active adventurer and even spent time in a women's prison in Australia. She loves life!
Margrit Heldstab was born in Zürich, Switzerland. She visited Bali for the first time in 1980 and was immediately fascinated by the Balinese culture and its people. She’s grateful to return to Bali twice a year for two months for her jewelry business, which enables her to visit her Balinese family and learn Bahasa.
Mark Johnson has been a collector, dealer, and researcher of Asian tribal art and culture since the mid-1970s. He has traveled to many remote areas of Asia, including Afghanistan, the northwest frontier of Pakistan, Nagaland (Burma), Mindanao (Philippines), and Borneo (Malaysia/Indonesia). He recently published a book on Borneo art: The Kayanic Tradition, Kayanic Dayak Art from Borneo, Volume I: Guardian Sculptures. Volume II is due for publication by the end of 2020. Johnson is a native of Southern California and currently lives in Los Angeles.
Dianne Vincent lives in Balmain, Sydney, Australia. She worked at ABC (Australian Broadcasting Corporation) and the Community and Public Sector Union in national secretariat roles. Now retired, Dianne loves travel, yoga, bike riding, film, museums, galleries, and poking around her garden with her two cats. She and her husband have an adult daughter who loves Bali too!
Peter Croft was born in Sydney in 1947 but has been a West Aussie since 1950. He worked in a job he loved at TVW Channel 7 in Perth from 1966 to early retirement in 1999 and has made two marvelous trips to Bali with work friends in 1980 and 1983, then solo in 1985, 1989, and 1990.
Peter Rex Thomas is an Australian who traveled overland from Timor through Asia to London in 1971. He wrote this letter to a friend who was en route to Bali. Peter worked in London and New York before returning to Bali in 1975, where his son Putu Jai was born. He worked in Bali for both the Florida Folk Art Museum and the huge Ron Jon Surf Shop USA chain. Peter is a published poet and the owner of Shelf Respect Booksellers in Australia and is married to Marie. They have a dog named Saffron.
Simon Davis first arrived in Bali in 1972 from Australia on the yacht, Kimbala. He has been trading and traveling throughout Southeast Asia ever since his retirement in 2000. He is married to Teresa, whom he met in Bali, and they have worked and traveled the world together for some forty years. They now live in the Northern Rivers of New South Wales in Australia and still travel the world.
Glenda Raka first visited Bali in 1979 after tossing up between a holiday in Fiji or Bali. Because her parents had said it was a must to visit, she chose Bali and changed the direction of her life profoundly. She fell in love with the island and a Balinese man whom she met three days before going home. They have been married for nineteen years, living the first nine years in Australia and the next ten in Bali. She feels enriched by her experience of Bali. Glenda is forever grateful for their two beautiful children, who are living bridges between the two cultures and wholly embraced by her extended Balinese family.
Judith Olah was born in Hungary. She has been a kindergarten teacher, head waiter, buyer, and manager for a retail store, wholesaler of vintage clothing, garment wholesaler, designer and manufacturer of clothes from Bali, and retail store owner from 1982 to 1990 in Sweden and from 1996 to the present in Hudson, Montreal. Judith is a mother to a wonderful twenty-two-year-old son and currently living in Quebec, Montreal, Canada.
Sebastian Morgan Rai Franklin
Sebastian Morgan Rai Franklin was born in Sydney, Australia to Walter Folle and Stephanie Franklin. He spent the first 12 years of his life living in Bali, eventually returning to Australia to attend high school in 2006 where he still resides. Sebastian has since undertaken a university degree in the arts, and now runs a small business selling flowers.
Melissa Neumann was born in Vienna, Austria, and came to Bali in 1990 with her parents, who built the Bali Royal Hotel in Nusa Dua. From five to twelve years old, Melissa resided in Bali and then returned to Europe to continue her education. In 2016 Melissa decided to return to Bali and start a restaurant. She currently resides on the island.
Stuart Rome is an American photographer whose interests in anthropology led to projects photographing antiquities in Latin America and Asia as well as recording remnants of those expressions found in the rituals of trance. This documentary work led to landscape photographs of forests as a manifestation of pantheistic energy.
Ken Wheaton “found his paradise” and spent most of the ’’70s in Bali. He lived and studied yoga with the Iyengar family in Pune, India, in ’73 and ’74 and went trekking to Jomsom and Mt. Everest during those same winters. Ken spent the ’79 and ’80 winters living in a yurt in Aspen and learning to ski. From the beginning of the ’90s, he taught at both Chuo and Tama Art University in Japan. He spent summers rediscovering the States and riding his Harley to Sturgis and around the West. He retired about three years ago and is waiting to see what the future holds in store.
Saraswati Mish arrived in Bali in 1976 and then resided there from 1989 until 2015. For twenty-six years, Bali was her home, where she immersed herself in Balinese culture and the expat community and raised her daughter, Ruby, there. She founded Prasada, a boutique export company, honoring Indonesian traditions at its creative heart. Saraswati was involved in supporting local orphanages and charities.
Victor Vidal Paz
Victor Vidal Paz likes to introduce himself as Django Mango, especially on his CD covers. Born of a Catalan mother and Spanish father, he has traveled to eighty countries, where he often creates something from his adventures, such as music and filmmaking.
Shakana Moon is an adventurous traveler, martial artist, graphic designer, dreamer, and mystic. Based in Bali since 1979, Shakana Moon has traveled the world visiting seventy-seven countries. He has lived with the tribal people, visited ancient historical temples, meditated in power vortices, and is passionate about multimedia, recording music and sound, taking photos, filming, writing, and drawing. He loves to experience and learn his way through life.
Noelle Simpson was born a rebel on a horseracing stud farm in New Zealand. She was sent off to boarding school in Switzerland and the United Kingdom. She is a lifelong artist in fashion, design, painting, and jewelry design. Since 1969 she has been living between Australia, New Zealand, the US, London, and Bali. Noelle fell in love with Bali in 1975 and has never missed a year as a part-time resident since 1984.
Soma Temple has been a longtime resident of Bali for thirty-five years, together with her three sons and now two grandsons. Having given birth to her children in a teepee and working as a doula for midwives, Soma is a true pioneer in many aspects of life, always looking for an alternative way to make the world a better place. A lover of beads, she makes Indian beadwork and crafts and does beading on clothes. In 2000 she started the company Aum Rudraksha, making spiritual malas and jewelry for the modern mystic. She is deeply involved with the Balinese religion and culture, studying with high priests and also taking them on many pilgrimages to India, the Himalayas, and Tibet. She is a bridge between cultures and beliefs, bringing people of different walks of life together in a harmonious way.
Jan Breon arrived in Indonesia in 1974. He discovered Bali as a surfer. Born of a Swedish mother and an Irish father, he was raised in France and is now a father of three. Jan created the largest ever Kecak reunion, with one thousand Balinese dancers, sending calming vibrations after the Bali bombing of 2002. Jan is a poet, philosopher, ornithophile, and entomophile.
Mira Stannard was born in New Zealand in 1967 and moved to Australia in 1968. She is a psychic, healer, midwife, and filmmaker. She lived permanently in Bali from 1997 but returned to Australia in 2014 when her beloved husband, Tansen, became ill; however, she still has a home in Bali. She is a mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother.
Mas Ngurah Wagendawati
Mas Ngurah Wagendawati is Balinese, born in Bali and lived in Seminyak while growing up. Mas’s father is Pak Agung Ngurah, mostly known as Agung Boss by many in Bali. Agung founded and owned Golden Village, which was the first bungalow-style accommodation in Seminyak in the 1980s. Agung also owned the infamous Chez Gado Gado disco on Seminyak Beach. Mas is now thirty-seven years old and lives in the Netherlands with her husband, Eddy, and their two sons, Jerry and Dez.
Gilbert Garcia is a multi-talented musician, gathering his musical flavors from exotic destinations and incorporating performances into his journeys to every corner of the globe. As an inveterate world traveler, a few of his favorite locations—which include Goa, India; Bali, and Ibiza, Spain—have now become home to his schools of music, where he performs and instructs students from all over the world. Gilbert continues to perform on a worldwide basis in prominent clubs, concert venues, retreats, and resorts while actively seeking new musical influences.
Christopher Hazzard is a Trinidadian-born Australian-trained doctor who grew up all over the world. He and his wife, Veronica, discovered that Bali was their spiritual home in 1972 and have spent time there every year since. Refusing to be just one thing, he is an artist, surfer, ex-beachcombing grandfather, enjoying being alive.
Stephanie Franklin discovered Bali in the late 1980s, where she spent the next twenty-five years. There she met her German expat partner Walter Folle. Together they had a beautiful son named Sebastian. Stephanie currently lives in the Southern Highlands, NSW, Australia with her beloved dogs and cats, pursuing her interests in art and nature.
Lucinda Cox is Anglo-Australian. It’s been Lucinda’s destiny (or possibly aim) to live somewhat on the fringes, where she likes to observe, discover, and study the connectedness of all life through enquiry, art, music, literature, and geography. She has allowed her various “hobbies” to dominate her time—dismaying some and enchanting others.
Marie Lasource was born in Marseille, France. She has traveled the world as a photographer and lived in Bali for thirty-seven years. She has 2 daughters that travel around the world also, both are divers. Today she lives a peaceful life on the island of Gili Meno in Java which reminds her of Bali in the old days and feels connected with the Cosmos.
Antonia Silver is a jewelry designer, stylist to the stars, fitness trainer, world traveler, and was a regular visitor to Bali in the ’80s and ’90s. Having successfully survived terminal cancer, she is today dedicated to helping others and volunteers for the Red Cross. Antonia now lives in New Jersey, USA.
Tom Anderson, after gaining an Honours degree in his native Scotland, had planning roles in Avon (London) and L'Oreal (Melbourne.) He spent the 80's in advertising, becoming a director on the board of DMBB before moving to Bali to assume partnerships in two hotels.
Thomas Bodmer was born in Zurich in 1950 and moved to Paris when he was eight years old. He first came to Bali in 1979 overland from Medan. He instantly fell in love with Bali and made it his new home in 1981 and still lives there to this day in one of the original Bali bungalows of Seminyak.
Gill Marais (RIP)
Gill Marais was born in 1930 in Johannesburg, South Africa. She was an art student in London. Gill married a French diplomat and has two children and grandchildren. Later she divorced and became a photojournalist and writer. Gill has lived between France and Bali for the last thirty years and moved permanently to Bali in 2020.
Richard Drake is an international business consultant and writer/artist with a pan-European (German, Italian, British, and French) background, who alternates living between Bali, Malaysia, Italy, the U.K, and Germany.
Mary Vaughn Williams
Mary Vaughn Williams, originally from New York City, hitchhiked through Europe at sixteen, the US at nineteen, and made it to Bali in time to stay in the alang-alang (palm roof) Blue Ocean bungalows. She eventually settled in Seminyak with her family. Her clothing line, White Rice, was based on the fine batiking of Pekalongan. Her current project is a shop in the Hudson Valley, where she sells exclusively American-made goods, but Bali will always be in her heart.
Vidya Heisel lived in Bali from 1986 to1994. She is originally from England, but, having lived all over the world, she considers herself a global citizen. Vidya has had various incarnations in this lifetime—as a vegetarian chef, a clothing designer and producer, and a master yoga instructor. Vidya has been running yoga teacher trainings all over the world for twenty years. She currently owns and directs Suryalila Retreat Centre in Andalusia, Spain, where she shares her lifelong passion for yoga, Vedanta, and Eastern philosophy.
Debbie Jet Shirey
Debbie Jet Shirey has spent the last thirty-two years splitting her life between Bali and Santa Monica, California. She is a fashion designer who creates all of her clothing in Bali. She was married to two different men at the same time in two different countries. She is technically still married to the last one. She loves all animals, especially cats, and she has two: Bob and Leonardo. She has run three marathons, speaks two languages, and loves the beach and surfing. She currently lives alone in Santa Monica and is trying to get back to Bali.
Stephen Marr has spent a life in the optimistic pursuit of creative happiness. He’s worked in ceramics, architecture, art direction, film production, painting, and sculpture. His early experiences in Bali were life and mind-altering. His works go out as ambassadors of goodwill in the hope of a peaceful world.
Colin DeCosta is a lifelong photographer who started with shooting weddings and product photography and has spent way too much time in the darkroom. An old surfer who has made more than thirty visits to Bali and Indonesia with his wife, Lee, he's completed 100 km trail marathons in the Blue Mountains of Australia and shares a home in Sydney'Eastern Suburbs with his wife, two sons, and an overly large poodle.
Shankari (The Alchemist) Ashton was born in Sydney in 1951. The oldest of three children, she was raised in the Australian bush, strong, fearless, a mother of five. A unique jewelry designer for Shankari.com and spiritual teacher, Shankari has created a sacred space for art and dance. Shankari’s Artists’ Sanctuary and Gallery is a beautiful venue for personal ceremonial events and rites of passage in West Bali.
Joey Ashley (RIP)
Joey Ashley was born in the Philippines. He moved to Bali in the ’70s and made a living designing, selling gemstones, and film editing. He is a free soul who lives by his unique philosophies about life, which he weaved into his book Beyond Isness, a satire about the spiritual scene in Bali. The main themes of the book are connection, unconditional love, and having fun.
Micky Provost, born in London, has been a semi-pro footballer, DJ, and fashion assistant. He has lived in Amsterdam, Bali, and Paris. Micky spent the ’90s living in Bali working as a DJ and in clothing production. He is now based in London, where he has been working for the past nineteen years for Giorgio Armani.
Ananda Hart was born in the United States and is a well-known artist who has lived in Bali for more than thirty years.
Duncan Murray Kirk
Duncan Murray Kirk’s concern for ecology motivated him to continue in the fields of sustainability and lifestyle. His intent is to reconcile the natural and scientific worlds; his passion is aroused by sustainable design, integrity, tolerance, and kindness. He has witnessed Bali’s changes for over forty years and wrote Bali: Sustainable Visions and In the Spirit of Bali. He is the author of The Rollo Trilogy and The Wetiko Killers, his fiction adventure.
Julie Ruckenstein was born in the beautiful city of Montreal, Canada. Julie has always been a deeply spiritual person and interested in world cultures. Julie’s curiosity led her to travel worldwide and reside for long periods of time in countries such as Costa Rica, Brazil, and Bali. Her passion is supporting people to reach their inner heart through Shamanic singing, including prayers to Pacha Mama. Julie now resides in the countryside of her homeland on a pristine lake, with her best furry friend, Ziah.
Lisa Holden has been an avid Bali devotee since 1977. Born and bred in Melbourne, Australia, she has traveled the world with her American husband, whom she met in Bali. Together they are very thankful for their little piece of Balinese history and culture.
Ann Sinclair, born in Melbourne, Australia, before settling in Bali in 1982, has been a hairdresser, a nurse, a model, a designer, and for the past twenty-right years has been serving life as a spiritual healer and counselor after adopting a life-changing shift of perspective.