Keynote presentation: Erik Wahl – The art of vision
Creativity: the new capital for entrepreneurship
Erik Wahl began his lively presentation by speed-painting a portrait of Bono accompanied by U2’s “Beautiful Day.” He related the story of how the dramatic failure of his business caused him to question his entire approach to how he learned and worked. In response, Wahl rediscovered his artistic self — the child who had stopped drawing after a grade-school teacher told him he wasn’t any good at it.
Today, Wahl uses his graffiti-style art to illustrate the power of what business can do when it moves beyond conventional wisdom to open a different door. Echoing Muhammad Yunus, Wahl noted that, at heart, everyone is an entrepreneur. Everyone is an artist. Our creative, entrepreneurial selves can enter through a different door to discover a new way of making vital human connections and improving the world.
The Art of Vision
Internationally recognized artist
No. 1 best-selling author
Erik is an internationally recognized graffiti artist, No. 1 best-selling author, speed painter and entrepreneur. Erik redefines the term “keynote speaker” by showcasing his creativity and motivation. Pulling from his history as both a businessman and an artist, he has grown to become one of the most sought-after corporate speakers. Erik’s on-stage speed painting seamlessly becomes a visual metaphor to the core of his message: encouraging organizations toward profitability through innovations and superior levels of performance.
Erik’s best-selling business book, Unthink: Rediscover Your Creative Genius, was hailed by Forbes magazine as “THE blueprint to actionable creativity” and by Fast Company magazine as “provocative with a purpose.”
Erik’s understanding of vision was originally born in the school of disappointment. After an eight-year career as a partner in a corporate firm, he became frustrated by the lack of innovative thought and corresponding profits he saw in business. So he set out to challenge companies to change their way of thinking, while simultaneously pursuing his own individual passions by combining business and art. He rediscovered his love for art and now plays in the business world by working through his art. This blending of the two is his effort to help the business community “create a vision to create disruptive strategies.”
Erik attended the University of San Diego, earning a bachelor’s degree in Business.