Octogenarian Passion


Meet a very unusual woman. Miss Erna Haselgruber, octogenarian and artist who stumbled on her ultimate passion late in life.

It all began one dreary Austrian fall day when, out of the blue, inspiration struck. 69-years young back then, something compelled Erna to buy a paintbrush, art supplies, and enroll in an art class. What simply began as a past time evolved into a lifelong calling.

Over the course of 20 years, this vivacious Austrian has brought to life a myriad of flowers in watercolor, dreamy pastoral scenes, and bold cityscapes in acrylic and oil.

During the Holiday Season, Erna switches the big canvas for greeting cards, creating unique designs with her favorite winter scenes.

When Erna and I met twenty years ago, we felt an instant bond. Over the course of our wonderful friendship, I‘ve been witnessing her phenomenal creative growth. Admiring her new work during a recent Austrian visit, I almost fell off the chair when she told me she’d be celebrating her 90th Birthday later this year. Not showing any sign of old age, this powerhouse of a woman is definitely my inspiration.

Her inspiration is running rampant. She has to paint, paint, paint. To date, her passion and staunch drive has produced a staggering output of over 200 paintings to her credit.

Over tea and cookies, Erna confessed with a hearty laugh, “I just can’t help it. It’s like the air I breathe.” And adds with a twinkle. “It’s keeps me young. It’s my life.”


About Christiane Von Linz

Christiane Von Linz, a native of Austria, is a world traveler, musician, educator, and the author of the popular Blog, travelsonataincmajor.wordpress.com, reaching a world wide audience in 90 countries. From 1981-1986, her love of travel propelled Christiane and her sister as the duo Evita & Christina on a singing adventure across Africa, Asia, and Arabia, before settling in the United States with her husband Bob. Christiane currently divides her time between Long Beach, California, Santa Fe, New Mexico, and Linz, Austria.

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