Vanessa (she/they) is a sexologist, yoga teacher, speaker, community facilitator and pleasure activist of Armenian and Anglo-Australian descent living, loving and working on the unceded lands of the Kulin nation. Their work — in its various modes — is grounded in the belief that the pursuit of pleasure is an act of resistance and a liberatory practise.
In 2008, conscious of the need for spaces for women to connect and explore their sexuality — and yearning for this herself — Vanessa founded Mia Muse. In this early conception, Mia Muse was primarily a sex-toy store and Vanessa a “fuck-erware” party host — but, naturally, these parties turned into confessional spaces. Seeing first-hand how rife shame and trauma were in discussions that centred around women’s sexuality, Vanessa decided to study sexology.
Since then, Mia Muse has continued to follow the trajectory of Vanessa’s personal evolution as they explore their relationship to their own body, gender expressions, sexuality, spirituality, and the shadows of the self. Now — though still rooted in the cultivation and care of community — Mia Muse is an expanded space with many offerings united by a common commitment to collective healing and pleasure through embodiment.
At the heart of Vanessa’s work is a question; how can we more fully access the abundance of pleasure that is possible in our bodies, in our lives? As with any good question, it’s not about an answer — but, instead, a commitment to a slow, relational and wildly nonlinear process.