Laura Elkins began painting as a child, taking lessons from several painters in her hometown, Oxford Mississippi, including small Saturday morning classes at the Mary Buie Museum. After college Elkins returned to Oxford to begin painting seriously. Visionary painter Theora Hamblett was a local presence and Elkins enjoyed visits with her at her home and studio, where Hamblett shared in depth descriptions of her work. Later, Elkins would share in Hamblett's earlier patronage by Betty Parsons, who exhibited Elkins’s work in 1980.
Having lived in Denver, Tucson, London, New York, and Paris, Elkins now resides in Washington DC, whose unique milieu has inspired her current exhibition. The artist has a degree in architecture from the University of Virginia, where she studied life drawing and painting, and has worked in all phases of architectural practice. She also studied at the Polytechnic Central London, and Sweet Briar College.
Elkins received a grant, funded by the NEA, The Rockefeller Foundation, and The Andy Warhol Foundation, in 1993, to create Why There Are No Great Women Artists: The Children's Room that translated her series of paintings, The Birth of Housework, into architecture. Elkins was the Forsyth Fellow at the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts in 2008, and joins the Santa Fe Art Institute's Immigration/Emigration Residency in September 2015.
Recent exhibitions include; Fabrications: Constructing Female Identity, curated by Yulia Tikhonova, at Dixon Place in Manhattan; Studio Montclair Viewpoints 2014, curated by Sue Scott, at Aljira Contemporary Art Center in Newark NJ; Portrait of the Self as Other, curated by Thomas Drymon, Studio Gallery, DC; 19 Ways of Looking at a Painting at Porch Projects in DC; DCwRAP, a solo exhibition at Ground Floor Workshop in Brooklyn; and three solo shows at the Fridge in DC.
Recent press includes Washington Post, Huffington Post, Flavorpill, We Love DC, Roll Call, and East City Art.
A monograph of Summer in the City will be available in September 2015.