BIO & STATEMENT
Based in Los Angeles, CA
Based in Los Angeles, CA
Laurie Shapiro is an installation artist and painter living and working in Los Angeles, California. Born in Long Island, NY (1990), Shapiro has a BFA from Carnegie Mellon University (2012), and spent a semester at Bilkent University in Ankara Turkey (2011). Shapiro’s encompassing installations have been commissioned for the San Luis Obispo Museum of Art in conjunction with the City of San Luis Obispo, Otherworld, Walter Studios, and Coffee World. Her installation “Flowers Are Not A Crime,” commissioned for Weedmaps, has been touring the country, appearing at Life Is Beautiful (Las Vegas, 2021), California Vibes (Long Beach, 2022), and the Governors Ball (NYC, 2022). In Los Angeles, Shapiro has had two solo shows with Radiant Space Gallery. She has also shown with Mars Gallery in Chicago. Shapiro has completed artist residencies at Kala Art Institute in Berkeley, and the San Jose Museum of Quilts and Textiles. In addition, Shapiro was the recipient of an Artists’ Fellowship Grant, Puffin Foundation Grant, Center for Cultural Innovation Grant, and Vibrant Cities Art Grant. Her paintings are in public and private collections, including the San Jose Museum of Quilts and Textiles and Bilkent University.
My work is both informed and an expression of my spirituality. I am inspired by the natural world - plant life, animals, and human emotions. Themes often include interconnectivity and the representation of feelings with colors. I am a painter using a layer building approach such as over/underpainting, and mixed media including sewing, screenprinting, and sculpture. My work spans from encompassing installations to individual paintings.
To build up my pieces, I start with collaging drawings referenced from plant life I’ve encountered through my travels and visits to trails and gardens. These drawings become multi-layered screen-printable stencils which are sewn or pasted as repetitive designs and a base layer. Intuitively, I build up the surfaces of each piece with layers of colors of water based paints. While my travels and visits to natural places inform my drawings, the spaces I create with them are otherworldly. These transformative and handmade installation spaces become more like stepping into my mind - reminiscent of quilts, repetitive Moroccan tiles or a psychedelic womb, my installations cover floor to ceiling and envelop the viewer. I make the lighting for each space with the same patterned drawings, creating colorful glows illuminating from silkscreened images.
My individual paintings are inspired by my personal life - beauty, connection, awe, and the human experience are represented throughout my work. In addition, I will photograph plants or people to use as reference images. Just as my installations are built up from my collaged repetitive drawings and layers of paint, so are my paintings. I like to think of the repetitive imagery in reference to the subatomic particles within us - we are made of so many of these tiny particles, which are always moving, always changing, and always connecting all of us and our environments. We are all connected to each other through nature.