Desy  Safán-Gerard Author of Evaluating Organization Development

Desy Safán-Gerard

Training and Supervising Analyst
Psychoanalytic Center of California (PCC)

I have led a threefold life in music, painting, and psychoanalysis. My book is based on papers and presentations given in the United States, Europe, and South America over the last forty years. It focuses on the issues confronting a person engaged in the creative process and addresses the unique needs of creative patients in treatment.


I was born and raised in Santiago, Chile and moved to Berkeley on a Fulbright scholarship to the University of California in 1966 and obtained a Ph.D. at UCLA in 1974. I am currently a Training and Supervising Analyst at the Psychoanalytic Center of California (PCC) in Los Angeles with a private practice where I work with creative people. I am a practicing artist and have a studio located in Venice, where I have lived since I built it in 1987.

I have led a three-fold life in music, painting and psychoanalysis. As a psychoanalyst I have been carrying out my clinical work, taught psychoanalytic courses, written several important papers on creativity along with my recently published book. As a painter I translate music into the visual realm by creating paintings based on the music of Boulez, Shostakovich, Piazzolla, Brockman, Kraft, and other contemporary composers. In the last few years, I have developed a performance, painting with both hands while a nude model moves to the music of contemporary composers. These performances have taken place in Paris and in Los Angeles at Art Share L.A., November 2013.

Areas of Research / Professional Expertise

    I developed tests on musical talent in the National Conservatory of Music in Santiago, Chile, and  my Masters thesis at Berkeley was on "The Personality Correlates of Musical Taste." In addition to my work with music, I have carried out studies on the psychology of creativity at UCLA and CalArts.

    I have over 40 years experience treating individuals, couples and groups. I like working with creative people in any field. As a painter and psychoanalyst I am especially able to help creative people deal with the difficulties inherent in a creative life and achieve their full potential. I also run a therapy group for men and women of various professions and backgrounds.

Personal Interests

    I am quite knowledgeable about the contemporary classical music world. I have done paintings based on the music of contemporary composers and I am at present embarking on a "translation" of a recent violin concerto by composer Esa-Pekka Salonen



Featured Title
 Featured Title - Chaos and Control - 1st Edition book cover


Desy Safán-Gerard • Mirrors of the Mind II

Published: Nov 24, 2014

This performance took place as part of the 'Mirrors of the Mind II' program and art exhibition. Desy Safán-Gerard has done performances in France in 2011, 2012 and 2013. This was the first time that she performed in Los Angeles. The music used this time was a string quartet entitled "beneath the surface of a sea of silence" by J.E. Brockman, a recorded live performance by The Lyris Quartet. The model was Cari Ann Shim Sham.

Desy Safán-Gerard : On Art and Psychoanalysis

Published: Sep 30, 2014

This video is an interview with Desy Safán-Gerard about her work in the art studio and her work in the consulting room. It was created as part of the Virtual Psychoanalytic Museum and will be featured in the Time and Space Gallery, Director/Curator Nancy Goodman and curator Batya Monder.