Dona Laurita has been a professional photographer for over thirty years, specializing in documentary work, deeply meaningful fine art projects, and teaching residencies.  Since gaining her Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Colorado, she has channeled her passion for art, community, and education into her practice.  From running her community-driven space to projects that work one-on-one with marginalized populations and topics, she harnesses the power of photography to inspire and activate change.

Her current focus is on “The Silhouette Project”, which shares the stories of under-served and vulnerable young refugee populations. Laurita’s unique use of this backlit technique captures the essence of the subject while providing the anonymity that makes it safe for these Newcomers to express themselves.

Other endeavors include her multi-media presentation titled “The Thin Veil,” a collection of ethereal images exploring “the thin veil” between life and death and the emotions that often follow a shattering event such as the death of someone we love. 

Creating bridges between art and the community, she has spent years developing an outreach approach in which workshops blend photography, visual art, creative writing, and storytelling.  Dona has inspired countless youth in Colorado schools, hospitals, summer camps, and after-school programs.  Her unique methodology fosters experiential learning and encourages students to express their impressions intuition, and imagination through various media.  Her indomitable spirit is ever-present in her work as an artist and human.

Dona’s extensive portfolio includes having been the exclusive photographer during a Colorado visit by His Holiness the Dalai Lama, and collaborating with Boulder Sister Cities on projects involving Lhasa, Tibet, and Jalapa, Nicaragua. She has exhibited across Colorado and has been the recipient of a National Endowment of the Arts grant among other smaller awards.  She extends her impact through fine-art documentary work, serving as an artist-in-residence in schools, Creative Aging programs, Children’s Hospital, the District Attorney’s Office Restitution Program, and other settings where her work can be most effective and beneficial.




Training in Social Emotional Learning (SEL), Healing Centered Education, Culturally Responsive Arts Education (CRAE), 2023-present

University of Colorado, Bachelor of Arts, 1987

Dona Laurita Photography and Fine Art Gallery and DownSpace, 2009-2019 a community gallery and performance space family owned/operated bringing together all forms of art focusing on the creativity of teens

Think 360 - Young Audiences Teaching Artist Residencies at the following locations (1999-present)

Creative Aging Programs, Denver, CO (2023, 2024)

Cotton Creek Elementary (2023)

Grant Beacon Middle School, Denver, CO (2017)

Meadow Elementary, Thornton, CO (2016)

Amesse Elementary, Denver, CO (2016)

Green Valley Ranch Public Library, Denver, CO (2016)

East High School, Denver (2015)

Meadow Elementary, Thornton, CO (2015)

Ashley Elementary (2014)

Barney Ford Elementary (2012)

Bromwell Elementary, Cherry Creek, CO (2011)

Acre’s Green Elementary, Denver, CO (2011)

Creekside Elementary, Denver, CO (2011)

Claire Gardens, Denver, CO (2010)

Explore Elementary, Denver, CO (2010, 2009)

Murphy Creek Elementary, Aurora, CO (2008)

Athmar Library Graffiti Project, Denver, CO (2008)

Marshdale Elementary, Evergreen, CO (2008)

Burlington Elementary School, Burlington, CO (2006)

Crested Butte Community School, Crested Butte, CO (2001)

Emerald Elementary, Broomfield, CO (1999)

Children’s Hospital Medical Day Treatment Facility, Denver, CO (1999)

Mizel Museum, Denver, CO, 2010-2016

Noel Community Arts School, Denver, CO (2016)

“Stories Matter”, Noel Community Arts School, funded by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts (2013)

Highline Academy, Denver, CO (2012)

Kunsmiller Creative Arts Academy, Denver, CO (2012)

Place Bridge Academy, Aurora, CO (2012)

 One Action Arts Immigration - Boulder County, Colorado

EcoArts:  Resilience Project, Lafayette, CO (2016)

 Colorado Department of Education’s “Summer Migrant Youth Leadership Institute” (SMYLI), 2013 - 2010 

Latino Youth Conference, 2012 

Denver District Attorney’s Office Restitution Project, Denver, CO, 2008-2010

Naropa University Selected Photographer to document the Dalai Lama's visit to Colorado, 1997

Naropa University documentary photographer, 2000-1990


[email protected]
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