Artist biography

I was born and raised in Northern Germany, in a village that has been the seat of my family for over 500 years.

After high school in an international boarding school I went to the College of Applied Arts in Hannover, Germany and then to the University of Applied Arts in Vienna, Austria. Following four years of studies and with a degree in Textile design I moved to Paris, France were I studied a year at a private “Haute-Couture” school and earned a degree in fashion design. I rounded out my education with an 8 month internship in the renowned window decoration department of the famous leather and fashion house Hermes-Paris.

At the age of 25 I decided to take a job with Club Med to teach batik and weaving in Morocco. There I discovered the technique of painting on silk, which allowed me to combine all my knowledge of textiles, fashion and decoration. For a couple of seasons I developed my new skills and then decided it was time to start my own freelance design studio in Hamburg, Germany. I started my business there in 1981.

Some years later I moved to California, where I continued to paint on silk and designed scarves for Bogner, Hermes, Leonard and other international fashion and accessory brands.

For my own growth I started to experiment with other media, eventually making the transition from silk and high fashion to paintings and murals. Some of my most frequent clients have been well known decorators such as Eugene Anthony of San Francisco and Thomas Bartlett of Napa. I have also had many shows in galleries and private homes. Some of my current work is at the Erickson Fine Art Gallery in Healdsburg, California. In 1995 I married writer Thom Elkjer, we live and work in the wine country of Mendocino County 2hours north of San Francisco.