Annie Yakutis went to college in the 70s and studied with California artists who revered non-objective painting for its compatibility with mystical traditions and eastern philosophy. A transfer to Seattle and the University of Washington required her to demonstrate proficiency in drawing and painting, and an emphasis on textile design there led her her to make shrine-like assemblages which won her a travel fellowship from the Ford Foundation to explore connections between traditional Javanese textiles and the ceremonial objects of Bali Hindu. She was accepted to UCLA’s graduate program in Fiber Arts but soon realized that painting was her medium.
As a young painter she experimented with pure geometrical abstraction as well as rebus-like works on paper that combined pictograms and text, then returned to oil painting via portraits of coworkers at the banks and law firms of Los Angeles where she worked as a temp. There was a collage and journal making phase during a period of transition, and then she arrived at the Gaviota Coast.
Our wild shoreline and coastal river valley are so glorious! It was natural to focus on the landscape, and she did, for over a decade. Ultimately, though, it’s what we do not see that fascinates her most. How do we visualize that?