Gestalt Therapy Institute of Los Angeles

GTILA is a membership organization whose mission is to advance and promote the exchange of information and expertise regarding the field of gestalt therapy among its members, with the professional community, and with the community at large.

Salon Series

GTILA presents a series of salons that provide an opportunity to learn about some aspect of Gestalt Therapy in a relaxed, informal setting. Salons are free and participants receive CEUs.

Looking for a Therapist

If you are interested in finding a therapist or group leader with Gestalt training and experience, check out our membership listing.

GTILA Membership

GTILA membership is a great way to become more involved in the gestalt community in Los Angeles. Your membership entitles you to a listing in our online “Find a Therapist” directory.

Upcoming Events

Sunday, January 26, 2020

Working With Children from a Gestalt Perspective (Sue Ellen Talley, LMFT)

January 26 @ 3:00 pm – 4:30 pm


When Violet Oaklander wrote her first book, Windows to Our Children, she had contemplated using the title “What to do With the Kid in the Room”.  Her model gives therapists many tools (experiential exercises) to work with the child through projection and metaphor in order to strengthen her sense of self and improve contact with herself and her environment.  This presentation includes a brief overview of the Oaklander model, a hands-on experiential exercise and live demonstration between the presenter and a workshop participant and ending with a short Q&A session.

Sue Ellen Talley, LMFT, received her M.A. in clinical psychology from Antioch University in 1994.  She was an intern and therapist with Children’s Institute International in Los Angeles from 1993 until 1998, specializing in the treatment of at risk and traumatized children and adolescents.  She received advanced training from the Gestalt Institute of Los Angeles (GTILA) and has been in supervision and training with Violet Oaklander, Phd. since 1994.  Ms. Talley has presented the Violet Oaklander Model of Gestalt Therapy at many workshops and international conferences in the past decade, and has created a summer training intensive for psychotherapists, held in Malibu, California. Since 1997, she has maintained a private practice in Los Angeles, working with children and adolescents and their families.  Ms. Talley formerly served as the Secretary of the Board of GTILA, and is a founding president for twelve years of the Violet Solomon Oaklander Foundation (  She can be reached at

More Information

Sunday, February 9, 2020

Gestalt Play Therapy: Violet Oaklander Model; Working with Clay: Strengthening Sense of Self Through Projective Process (Stephanie Pawlowicz, LMFT, RPT)

February 9 @ 3:00 pm – 4:30 pm


“Know what to do and why you are doing it”

This integrative modality offers a therapeutic experience that activates the senses, emotions, creativity, and intellect with children and adolescents in interactive Gestalt Play Therapy.

The Salon includes a brief overview of Gestalt theory and experiential practice in order to better support a depth of understanding when using projective modalities in Gestalt Play Therapy.


Stephanie Pawlowicz has a private practice in Santa Barbara, California where she specializes with children, adolescents, and couples. She also specializes in therapeutic interventions with adolescents and adults recovering from addictions. She is adjunct faculty at Pacifica Graduate Institute where she teaches child psychotherapy and human growth and development. She is also adjunct faculty at Antioch University SB where she teaches contemporary psychotherapy. She has led parent education/support groups and groups for single mothers living at St. Vincent DePaul, Santa Barbara. She is a Certified Gestalt Therapist with Children and Adolescents.

More Information

The purpose of GTILA includes:

  • Promoting the application of gestalt therapy principles;
  • Promoting a dialogue on gestalt therapy theory within the gestalt therapy community;
  • Promoting a dialogue between gestalt therapy and other theories;
  • Functioning  as a catalyst for community building and as a support network for its members;
  • Promoting quality of standards concerning the clinical application of gestalt therapy.

GTILA presents a series of salons which provide an opportunity to learn about some aspect of Gestalt Therapy in a relaxed, informal setting.  Salons are free and participants may receive CEUs for a minimal fee.  All people interested in Gestalt Therapy are welcome to attend Salons. GTILA does not discriminate in its education or membership activities based on race, national or ethnic origin, religion, gender, sexual orientation, or any other characteristic protected under applicable law.

GTILA maintains the Arnold R. Beisser, M.D. Scholarship Fund, a philanthropic program to support trainees who have enrolled for gestalt therapy training and can demonstrate financial need. In addition, GTILA hosts a variety of social events for the Gestalt community and publishes a yearly directory of its members.

Benefits of Membership

I use the Find a Therapist information for nearly every referral I make these days.  I know from experience that the therapists are top-notch, and I like the ease of using the insurance, location and specialty information.

Armin Baier


In a profession that can be isolating, I find having a sense of community with other professionals of the same perspective, is affirming and supportive.  The directory allows me to refer a part of a couple to a like-minded therapist.  Also, the referrals I have received over the years have more than paid for the cost of my membership.

Michelle Fryback


GTILA has been a great way for me to stay connected to the gestalt community, participate in opportunities to learn, deepen relationships with colleagues, and meet new ones, as well. From the salons to membership directory, which is a wonderful source for referrals, groups or consultation, GTILA provides a valuable service in supporting the work of gestalt therapists.

Michele Conklin Montrone


I find it exciting and refreshing being a part of our organization of like-minded therapists who value the vitality of the holistic and present centered approach of gestalt therapy.

Naomi "Nickie" Godfrey


Contact Us

© 2017 GTILA

Gestalt Therapy Institute of Los Angeles  |  PO Box 175 - Lomita, CA  90717  |