Annie Lapin is a Los Angeles-based artist, who paints complex, dynamic abstract paintings in oil, acrylic, and enamel spray paint. Her work contains a dynamic mix of gestural painterly techniques and brightly-hued abstract passages. Her artistic process involves painting with brushes, scraping, rubbing, pouring, and smearing the layers of paint. Her paintings are originally grounded in representation but then distort this image into an abstraction of her view of the world.
Lapin received her B.A. from Yale University in 2001. In college she worked in the college print shop. One summer she worked as an intern on an archaeological site in Guatemala. In 2004, she received a Post-Baccalaureate Certificate, School of the Art Institute of Chicago. She earned her M.F.A. from U.C.L.A. in 2007.
Starting around 2008 Lapin was painting groups of figures lounging in blurry scenes much like 19th century French paintings. In 2009, she made her own version of Manet’s “Luncheon on the Grass” which she called “Perverts” that excluded the men. She moved into landscape painting for a few years before turning towards full abstraction.
Since 2011 her style became more formal with attention to abstracted marks and their placement. By 2013, she smudged over the figurative and representational elements in paintings that were mostly abstract but with some slight allusion to the figurative. What one supposes to be landscapes or portraits are flurries of abstract marks of no specific object.
Her latest works are sculptural canvases where cloth is mounted in a distorted way or hacked open to reveal the wood structure of the canvas as well as the wall upon which the painting is hung. The construction of the painting is revealed as she cuts the canvas in a kind of archaeological perspective. “I find myself compelled to push my paintings toward disintegration into their constituents – stroke, color, and surface . . . “ Lapin wants to obfuscate something that is obvious. Abstraction interrupts representation of an historical image. For Lapin, this ambiguity is strength.
Lapin was selected to participate in three residency programs throughout the United States and Ireland, one of which was at the Weatherspoon Art Museum in Greensboro, North Carolina where she was a visiting artist in 2013-2014. She has had solo exhibitions at MOCA Santa Barbara 2012; Pasadena Museum of California Art 2009; and Grand Arts, Kansas City 2008.
She has been part of group exhibitions at galleries in London, Mexico City, Houston, Santa Monica, and Los Angeles, as well as the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art in Kansas, and the Torrance Art Museum in California.
Her work is in the permanent collections of LACMA, Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art, Orange County Museum of Art, Rubell Family Collection, Santa Barbara Museum,
Weatherspoon Art Museum, and the Zabludowicz Collection in London.