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Laura was drawing before she could write. Her kindergarten teacher was the first person who called her an artist.

The Cave

The Cave (c) 2016 24" x 48" gouache/charcoal/milk on reclaimed wood veneer
The Cave (c) 2016 24" x 48" gouache/charcoal/milk on reclaimed wood veneer

The Cave
(c) 2016
24″ x 48″
gouache/charcoal/milk on reclaimed wood veneer

“The Cave”. This work was inspired by a dance performance, Cave Forms, which a saw a couple months ago at the TAC: Temescal Art Center. Here’s a photo from it:… .

At the Berkeley Art Party, one of the guests said this: it looks like a battle was fought underneath, and something died, and yet it is doesn’t feel completely negative.

I asked her, are you a psychologist? She said no. I said, because you are an amazingly perceptive person.

That’s not the story I may have given this piece, but it’s truer than anything I would have thought of.


Berkeley Art Party on May 13

Little Creature (c) 2016 by Laura Schatzkin

I’ve been invited to be a featured artist at the Berkeley Art Party in May!

Here’s the details:

May 13, 2016
7:00 – 9:30 pm

Sawtooth Building
DaSilva Ukulele Co.

2547 8th St. Unit 28
Berkeley CA 94710

Yes, you read that right — this party is at a ukulele manufacturer/art studio. So what does this party have?

  • Art — In variety and abundance!
  • Ukuleles in various states of construction and disarray
  • The Sawtooth Building, which is full of other artsy spaces
  • Live Music
  • Tasty snacks & beverages

What a lot of cool stuff! Please join me!

Little Creature by Laura Schatzkin

Little Creature (c) 2016 . 36″ x 48″. Gouache on wood panel.

Shiner, Four Months Later

Shiner, Four Months Later by Laura Schatzkin

Shiner, Four Months Later (c) 2011 22"x 30" gouache/mixed media on paper

Shiner, Four Months Later (c) 2011

22″x 30″

gouache/mixed media on paper

This is a tribute to my friend of Shiner, who died of cancer. Four months after she died I had an inexplicable metaphysical experience that is the inspiration behind this piece.

Little Creature

Little Creature by Laura Schatzkin
Little Creature by Laura Schatzkin

Little Creature (c) 2016
36″ x 48″
Gouache on wood panel

This image was very influenced by the many forms of art I saw at The Metropolitan Museum of Art in December. The Greek helmets captivated me with their abstraction of human faces. I really wished I could try one on. The poses of the Indian goddesses had such beautiful curves that I couldn’t help but emulate them a little bit here.

This is a self-portrait of who I am in this moment — elements of obscurity and nakedness. Some people see the helmet as a symbol of being a warrior, but I didn’t have that in my conscious mind when I was creating the piece.

Young Artists!

Emily and Nicholas with my drawing Sibley
Emily and Nicholas with my drawing Sibley

Emily and Nicholas with my drawing Sibley

I haven’t the pleasure of meeting these two young artists, but one of the guests of my open studios back in June purchased a sketch of mine as a gift to them. Here they are with the sketch and with their own art. Very inspiring! I really enjoy seeing my art spreading out into the world, ending up in someone else’s home.

I hope to meet them at my next open studios, or theirs.

Emily and Nicholas with their art

Emily and Nicholas with their art


epiphany by by Laura Schatzkin

Epiphany (c) 2015
16″ x 19″
Gouache on wood panel

I created this piece for the annual members show at Berkeley Art Center. It’s mixed media on wood veneer. I don’t know what kind of wood — maybe maple? — it is but it has a wonderful golden color. I didn’t use any gesso and painted directly on the wood. This meant I had to paint several layers of gouache before the color was as vibrant as I wanted. I’m really pleased with how the wood adds so much dimension this work.

I chose the title Epiphany because it appears to me that she is coming to a profound realization. This realization is so strong and the thought is so weighty that she has to support her head with her hand, and there is energy emerging from subconscious or dream source as well as her erotic source.

My work tends not to be explicitly erotic even though there is much nakedness. Yet erotic feelings are very powerful and and compelling. The erotic and the subconscious are strongly linked; both are primal, both places beyond words.

There is also a strange, distorted eagle’s claw emerging from her braid, and an orange cat traversing her arm. I’ve yet to discover the meaning of these images.

Planet of the Two Moons

Planet of the Two Moons
Planet of the Two Moons

Planet of the Two Moon. (c) 2015
24″ x 48″
Gouache/ink/pencil on wood panel

This is my third piece on wood. I realized as I was creating it that it clearly depicts my mood of the last several months. Unlike most of my work of the last couple of years, this one isn’t even on earth never mind about nature. The jackal in the picture (although I’m thinking it may be an Ethiopian Wolf) looks more like a projection of the mind than an actual being. And the two moons? Maybe you can guess.

The my favorite part of creating this piece is when I had an epiphany that since I was working on wood, I could carve the craters. Although “carving” isn’t a “media” per se, I’m going to consider part of the mixed media which includes wood, gesso, gouache, pencil, ink, carving.

This is going to be my last large piece for the rest of 2015. I’ve like to put out a lot more work by the end of the year so will be switching back to paper and smaller pieces.

Panorama Framing

laura schatzkin at panorama framing

Update 9/3/15: One hand-colored print of Les Mots Justes sold this week! Also, you can view Ms Wolf and Ms Rabbit Go on an Adventure in the storefront window.

panorama framing inc. logo You can now find limited edition giclée prints of my art at Panorama Framing. Friends get 10% off framing! You can find the following prints:


Tightrope by Laura Schatzkin

Tightrope (c) 2015
4′ x 5′
gouache & ink on wood

I didn’t realize until I was about halfway through it that this is about my current life: very tenuous, looking towards a future that seems ominous and friendly simultaneously.

I made it to open studios. Hurray!

It’s unbelievable how much work I’ve done for months getting ready to participate in ProArts East Bay Open Studios. I began in February, and preparations got more and more intense until the opening last evening. The last three weeks were just insane, and the day before I was framing, packaging and hanging art for twelve hours straight. And then it was done! And there was a party!

I have to say it was so tired by the time I got the party that I completely forgot any photos. Which is a shame, as I really wanted to photograph people with the art they bought. I’ll try to do that from this point forward.



Ready (c) 2014
16″ x 20″
ink, gouache, pencil

Something has happened here. She looks inside, deciding what to do next. The crows come to her, urging her to take action.

Inventory of Older Artwork

madonna of the 36 hands
madonna of the 36 hands

Madonna of the 36 Hands
pencil, gouache, pencil
38″ x 50″

I just did an inventory of about 25 older works that will be for sale at the Open Studios, including Madonna of the 36 Hands, from 1996.

ProArts East Bay Open Studios

ProArts East Bay Open Studios featuring Laura Schatzkin and Gaila Turner

ProArts logoLaura Schatzkin and Gaila Turner will be showing their recent drawing and painting to the public as participants of ProArts East Bay Open Studios. Dozens of works will be on sale, ranging from very small (5″ x 7″) to very large (4′ x5′), with something for every budget.

We both do figurative art, but it’s very different. Turner’s art focuses on her experiences of living in urban communities across the country and especially her neighborhood of East Oakland, whereas Schatzkin’s work is more surreal and features female figures. Turner’s work is very expressive with bright colors and broad strokes, and Schatzkin’s work tends to be more linear and monochromatic. We’re delighted with the interplay between our work.

Please stop by!

We’ll be open both weekends, June 6&7 and June 13&14, with Artist Talks at 2pm.

You can find us at 3955 Magee Avenue in Oakland.

New Art: It’s huge!

Tightrope in progress #1

Tightrope in progress #1I purchased a couple of 4′ x 8′ baltic birch plywood panels for my next four pieces.    I had them cut up into different sizes and have started gessoing the 4′ x 5′ piece.  It’s very exciting so far!



Alchemy, (c)2015
22.5″ x 28″
gouache, ink on reclaimed wood

Here’s the first piece I’ve done on wood. It’s reclaimed wood — a great cabinet door I found at Urban Ore. This would have been a very different piece if I’d done it on paper. The wood definitely influenced how the piece developed; there’s much more layering, plus my carving out the stars. Having a built-in frame in the dark was a great bonus.

This figure has a lot in common with She. I wonder if this is She as an adult?

In her  righthand she holds a flame which burns but does not hurt her. In her left she hold a bedraggled, agitated Scrub Jay just in front of abdomen. She’s decorated with white ribbons.

She is saying something with these symbols and gestures that cannot be explained with words.

Oakland Artists and Writers Salon A Success!

Oaland Artists and Writers Salon members

Oaland Artists and Writers Salon membersWe had a great gathering of minds, ideas, and creativity on Pi Day.  Everyone shared a bit about their work and we discussed why we create what we do, our goals for our work, and more.  This photo was unfortunately taken after some of the guests had already departed, but I think you can see that these folks have been having a good time.

Oakland Artists and Writers Salon

Oakland Artists & Writers Salon

It’s on!  The first Oakland Artists and Writers Salon.  A place to meet other creative people, discuss ideas, share our work.  Everyone will get 3-4 minutes to do a reading, talk about their work, or introduce an idea.  Then it’s a free-for-all for everyone to connect with whomever they wish.  I’m very excited to see what happens!

Oakland Artists & Writers Salon