“There is this word ‘neshama’ which is hebrew for ‘breath/breathing’. נְשִׁימָה. It is almost like when someone is a part of you. When you are breathing they are part of your very being. When I think of romance I think of this word which can also be applied to friends and family too.” -EY

This episode features one of Robert’s coolest and most admirable friends, Elaine Young. They met during Frosh Week to welcome the new eager students at the University of Toronto almost 2 decades ago. Elaine is many things, for this event she was the Event Conceptual Organizer bringing together music, design, dance, theatre and fashion. 

“At 23 I thought that everything I learnt, I had to unlearn and begin again. But at 23 you have had enough going on to know what you need to forget.” - EY

It is wonderful to have friends that through the thick and thin, dark and light years, they remain. Elaine is this person to Robert. Where respect, inspiration, joy and jokes all meet. 

“I’m grateful for having happy problems. Some people have some real problems. I mean I have all my limbs, I can speak, I can breathe properly, I could go to yoga this morning, I got off a plane yesterday. I have very happy problems” -EY

Elaine is a globetrotter having lived abroad in Europe and Asia for many years. She now finds herself in NYC attending the New York University Gallatin School of Individualized Study, close to completing her Masters. Robert is happy about this as Toronto and NYC are just an hour flight apart. However she has learned to be adaptable and realizes that home is wherever she is.

“I tell people how it is very important for my body to take me for a walk, and allow it to do what it needs to do without it being disconnected from my mind. I really need to do that, because it makes me harmonize. I think being physical is important”. -EY

Three key words that describe Elaine’s passionate focuses are the arts, sciences and fashion. She naturally is a curious cat and is excited to almost be done school. This will allow her more time and freedom to get back to the lab, to creatively cook up stuff and seeing what manifests. 

“Reaching infinitely higher than you want to be, or think you can be. Even if all else fails, you have still gone half that much, because you went for it, you went for the pinnacle.” -EY

She wants to be remembered for creating and loving ‘Critical Beauty’ and is reaching for more purposeful matching creativity with social change in a humanitarian way. Scientific images related to life such as cells, viruses and micro-biotic stuff reflecting parallels in us and the universe fuel her work. Forever curious yet calculated, grounded yet a dreamer.

“Just cause you can, doesn't mean you should. I think No is a really important thing to understand.” -EY

Things that are important to her and she wanted to share:

BLACK MIRROR Netflix Series: This sci-fi anthology series explores a twisted, high-tech near-future where humanity's greatest innovations and darkest instincts collide. https://www.netflix.com/ca/title/70264888

BBC’s PLANET EARTH DOCUMENTARIES: Dazzling, state-of-the-art high-definition imagery highlights this breathtaking documentary series featuring footage of some of the world's most awe-inspiring natural wonders -- from the oceans to the deserts to the polar ice caps. http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p02544td 

MANUFACTURED LANDSCAPES: This documentary reveals the gritty underside of industrial landscapes. Photographer Edward Burtynsky explores the subtle beauty amid the waste generated by slag heaps, dumps and factories. Memorable scenes include a Chinese iron factory where employees are berated to produce faster, and shots of children playing atop piles of dangerous debris. The contrasts between wealth and poverty are most striking in Shanghai, with new high-rises towering above old slums. http://www.edwardburtynsky.com/site_contents/Films/Manufactured_Landscapes_Film.html 

PRESS PAUSE PLAY: The digital revolution of the last decade has unleashed creativity and talent in an unprecedented way, with unlimited opportunities. But does democratized culture mean better art or is true talent instead drowned out? This is the question addressed by PressPausePlay, a documentary film containing interviews with some of the world's most influential creators of the digital era.https://vimeo.com/channels/presspauseplay

SIDEWAYS: Sideways Film is a documentary and factual sales agency established in 2010 that specialises in worldwide Broadcast, All Rights, Digital, Educational and in-flight licensing. We work closely with our filmmakers to ensure that every title offers a unique perspective and gets the attention it deserves. http://www.sidewaysfilm.com/about/

About Elaine’s creative focus and work:

The LAByrinth brand is inspired by the invention of the telescope and microscope, how it revolutionized the way we see the World and made it possible to observe phenomena previously invisible to the naked-eye, forever changing what we know as our visible landscape. The name LAByrinth is a combination of two meanings: LAB [abbreviation for laboratory], a place dedicated to scientific discovery and experimentation; and labyrinth, an intricate structure similar to DNA and a metaphor for the intricacies of Nature, that is composed of interconnecting passages, split paths and dead ends requiring decoding in order to understand its logic.



The theme of this ‘Weekly Quest’ is HEALTH. To source all your groceries this week locally. To know where they are all coming from. And/OR for all the meals you make this week to be made with no processed ingredients.

*Music featured throughout this QuestHands podcast is by Dj Shiva www.iamdjshiva.com