Karin Felicitas Schurman Vacakis
Karin and her twin sister, Anita, were born on July 25, 1926, in Essen, Germany, and led a very comfortable childhood until the Nazis took over. Things changed for the Jewish family who narrowly escaped the SS
The twins were sent to a boarding school in London managed by nuns and were “converted” to Catholicism. Back in Germany, their father died in his forties and their mother remarried and moved to Italy. After graduation, Karin became a photographer, working at Harrods, where she learned to do portraits. The sisters then both moved to Berkeley. It was there she met Nick Vacakis at a bridge party. They two soon married, and later visited Germany where their son Emmanuel was born in 1955.
Back in California, she and Nick built a cabin in Lake Tahoe, where she explored her art, painting in oils and taking photographs. Karin also enrolled in the College of Arts and Crafts, where she studied painting and photography. Her son Paul was born in 1957. Ever fearful of the Nazis, she raised both of her boys as Catholics.
In 1982, at the age of 55, Karin was diagnosed with colon cancer and died 18 months later.
The paintings on display here are from a family collection. Limited edition prints are part of a family collection.