This millennial natural beauty is transforming light and breaking barriers on the top level of her Atlanta BeltLine home off Moreland Avenue. Sharon Lapin’s organic and youthful approach to art with color and fluidity encompasses her pottery, printmaking, encaustic work and larger scale paintings, many of Judaica and family scenes. Then there are her treatments of a Navajo rodeo and Yuri Gagarin, the Soviet cosmonaut.
The next generation of Southern talent, Lapin graduated from Dunwoody High School before attending SCAD (Savannah College of Art and Design) in Savannah and getting her degree in printmaking and painting at Georgia State University. She worked at Storehouse as accessory buyer and rug designer, produced catalogue shoots while learning about wardrobing and sets, leading to freelancing in commercial shoots. As a working artist, Lapin is proud to also still hold a career in the corporate television industry as a freelance teleprompter operator. Her main client is The Home Depot.
With respect for her subjects and a chockablock of media, and well-thought-out ideas, Lapin is one to watch. Or even watch from behind, to see her lioness designs on the back of her hand-painted denim award-winning jackets.
Join the tour of free spirits, wax, acrylic and Capoeira.
Jaffe: How would you describe your own home?
Lapin: We built this East Atlanta house in 2013. I let the art speak for itself around my accent hues of muted sea green, sage and mint. The focal point over the fireplace is my painting of a Navajo cowboy rodeo scene reflecting those colors. Of course, we have our own children’s art in the front entrance hallway.
Jaffe: One of your mediums is denim jackets we see hanging in the hall.
Lapin: During the pandemic when my children were home, it was too difficult to spend uninterrupted hours on larger canvas paintings. I came up with art on a smaller scale.
I started hand painting on denim jackets and vests. After I made a few, I took commissions on them and sold quite a few. Instagram was great for this! (@lapincreative). Usually I would find vintage jackets or take my client’s own denim jackets or vests and give them new life by painting an animal on the back. I like the idea of making an old garment new again because it is also very earth friendly. This project won me the Pentel [Arts] Spotlight award for the crafts category; and I did an Instagram takeover for their channel on Jan. 1. Currently six of my hand painted garments are at Arts Beacon Gallery. The rest have been sold for $85 to $125. The tiger is pretty cool.
Jaffe: Your Judaica is very emotive.
Lapin: “Pandemic Zoom Seder” for Passover seemed only natural.
The sepia one is about the time I attended a boureka-making demonstration at my former Hebrew teacher’s home while a podcast was also in progress.
“Mah Jongg on the Back Porch” speaks for itself.
“Preparing for the Mikveh” is very personal for me. After my 40th birthday, I reached for renewal by participating in the ritual immersion in the mikveh. Thus you see [Hebrew] cursive writing mikveh, the use of the Hebrew letter mem, and the number 40 numerology. For healing, you can envision any woman in motion as the light is breaking in yellow, red and blue tones as she leaves part of herself behind and re-emerges differently.
In the broad sense of Judaica, my Kiddush cups are featured in The Museum Store at The Breman Museum.
Jaffe: Another of your themes is love of family.
Lapin: I did this “Portrait of Rich and Gloria Lapin” [this year]. Capturing my parents in their dining room by their Russian samovar.
“Boys in the Bedroom.” was accepted into the Marietta Cobb Museum of Art “Metro Montage XXI” exhibition on exhibit through Sept. 5.
Jaffe: You are so multifaceted. What are some of the other treatments you have done?
Lapin: Neiman Marcus purchased several of my square silkscreen prints on boards under encaustic wax as you peer through the layers. These range from $750 to $950 each.
Other than the paintings, I have mono-prints on wood like the car in the studio layered with ink. Also I have done silkscreen prints like the Yuri Gagarin’s Soviet Cosmonaut stamp. Something very off-beat is our fun family experiments with fireworks resulting in colored smoke under a bowl, and then framed in our dining room.
Jaffe: What are some works of others that you display in your home?
Lapin: At the front door, we have an Elizabeth Malpas composition of Korean Hwatu playing cards raised off the background in a shadow box. We have an original collage piece by artist Michael Jones, who recently exhibited work at Swan Coach House Gallery. And of all the photographs hanging on our walls, my absolute favorites are by photographer Ivette Spradlin.
Jaffe: Why don’t you sign your work?
Lapin: I don’t want my signature to distract from the content of my painting.
Jaffe: You engage in a very unusual sport that is very hip BeltLine-ish.
Lapin: I exercise with the Capoeira Training Club. It is an Afro-Brazilian martial art practiced worldwide with a very rich history that combines music, fighting and blocking techniques, acrobatics and dance. We meet in a historic 1922 church nearby in Grant Park.
Lapin does cartwheels in her upstairs studio between the aisles of paintings.
- Marcia Caller Jaffe
- Chai Style
- Chai Style Art
- Sharon Lapin
- Atlanta BeltLine
- Moreland Avenue
- Navajo rodeo
- Yuri Gagarin
- Dunwoody High School
- SCAD (Savannah College of Art and Design)
- Home Depot
- East Atlanta
- denim jackets
- Arts Beacon Gallery
- Pentel Arts Spotlight
- Mah Jongg
- Marietta Cobb Museum of Art
- Michael Jones
- Korean Hwatu
- Neiman Marcus
- Swan Coach House Gallery
- Ivette Spradlin
- Elizabeth Malpas
- Capoeira Training Club
- Grant Park
- Afro-Brazilian martial art
- blocking techniques
- Kiddush Cups
- Breman Jewish Heritage Museum
- free spirits