Nina Gorbach's Biography

Born and raised in Chicago, IL Nina holds a B.A. in Fine Arts from the University of California, Berkeley, a Masters in Counseling Education from San Diego State University, is a Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in Sonoma County, California and a certified movement therapist. She holds Diplomas in Waldorf Education from Emerson College, England and the art of Eurythmy from Dornach, Switzerland. Francis Edmunds, Christine Lubczyk, and Davina Niederhauser are her unforgettable mentors.

When nine, Nina began formal training with Chicago artist, Helen Hale. Portrait painting and life drawing captured her attention. Fascinated by city faces, she recognized the dignity in each, however hidden. Photos of people from Hale's global travels sparked the desire to visit foreign lands. Helpful parents bought her a first set of oils; housebound with a broken leg, her experience of art as healing was born.

Many artists and teachers have inspired Nina, among them: Ken Goldman,
L.Collot d'Herbois, Richard Lazzaro, Lar Lubovitch, Sylvia Boorstein, Natalie Rogers, Lee Ben-Yehuda, Stephanie Goldman, Li Li Ta and Richard Yaski.

Living in Europe for 10 years, Nina studied and taught art, Eurythmy and English in England, Scotland, Italy, Greece, Spain, Switzerland, Holland and Hungary. Folk arts from East and West, Flamenco, African and Israeli dance, Eurythmy and T'ai Chi are heartbeats that strengthen her sensitivity as a portrait and figure artist. Her art has sold to individuals and businesses in the U.S. and abroad.

Nina's focus on arts in education and counseling spans more than 40 years, since 1988 specifically with children and adults coping with grief and trauma. In 2000, she founded a non-profit organization, WillMar Center for Bereaved Children, named for her parents, William and Mary Sagall, who compassionately helped others throughout their lives.

Pencil DrawingAs an artist, Nina enjoys the brilliance of oils and the simplicity of black and white media. She teaches children and teens art, poetry and creative movement. As a therapist, she offers creative tools for children and adults. Curious about the human soul in all its facets, strengths and sorrows, people, portraits and figures remain her favorite subjects. Nina enjoys a home studio for her art and counseling. She lives in the beautiful town of Sonoma with her greatest inspiration, her husband, Howard.

In each face, in each person, Nina finds what is deeply personal and universal. She experiences a joined humanity, in every countenance a connection, a link to a world beyond ourselves. Art, spirit and healing become one bridge binding earth and heaven.