Anik Legoupil

painter born in 1972

Anik Legoupil

Anik Legoupil was born in Rennes (France) in 1972.


She obtained the French baccalaureate (High School Diploma) with a specialization in art and continued this path by studying two years at the Faculty Of Plastic Arts at Rennes where  she also studied  literature with an option in Japanese and designed and ran courses in  art for young people in difficulty.


From 1991 to 1993, she immersed herself in the learning Jacquard design with designer B. Even, including the creation and sales of artwork models in Germany and Belgium.


She left France for Japan in September 1993. From that time, until 1995, she taught French and designed textile models for Suminoe and Nishikawa.  She also worked as a model for painters and sculptors (agency Pour Vous, Tokyo).

● First collective exhibition in 1994, on the theme of Nude, in Meguro (Tokyo).

● First solo exhibition in 1995. “Above the cosmic rains”, at the Abidou Gallery in Tokyo.

● Other solo exhibitions at Elamplitude, Dan Gallery, Shibuya, Sillonner, Tokyo Design Center (1996)

Through her travels in Asia and the Pacific, Anik Legoupil pursued her research on the use of inks and waxes on Washi paper.


Back in France in 1996, she settled in Brittany where she worked on the theme of human roots.  She also lead  workshops on the making of paper, origami creation and installations, and participated in school art programs.  From 1997 to 2000 she studied at University Paris Diderot  and received a diploma in art and therapeutic mediation.  Her thesis was entitled “A paper-making workshop dedicated to a tattered youth”.  She took an internship in an art-therapy studio with T. Millbacher in Rennes, France.


Anik Legoupil continued to show her works, and created the association “Avec Papiers” and L’ACCES (L’Art Comme Chemins d’Écoute et de Soin” (Art as a Path to Listen and Care).  During this period she took part regularly in various art exhibitions in Brittany, worked with various associations, participated in university conferences and created a radio broadcast about art and therapy on Saint-Malo’s RPV station.


She practices art-therapy with mediation collectively and individually, clay modelling and painting, and conducts  paper workshops for artistic and therapeutic use.


In her personal research, she introduced the frame of the sieve as a primary frame.  In 2004, she started her series “The Abyss as a Window” completed in 2011.  She continues to show her work in exhibitions and reinforces her engagement in the association Avec Papiers by overseeing professional trainings and inviting artists to exhibit their works within the association and in ACCES.


Since 2011, she is exclusively represented by Max Laniado.


Past Exhibitions:

● Entre/Autre, Maison Internationale de Rennes (1998)

● Ancrage, Cancale et Saint Coulomb (Brittany, France) in 2002

● Anik Legoupil, Chateau de la Briantais (2004) and realization of a film with Q. Guilloit and E. Lugand

● Regular exhibitions in Saint-Malo (France) at Place Vendôme, Dinard, Tournez la page, Combourg, La Caravelle, La Timonerie

● Exhibition at the Plastic Art Academy of Malouine (winter 2010) at La Halle a Maree in Cancale, France in summer 2010

● Exhibition at l’ACCÈS: excavation, interactive exhibition introducing the display of contemporary art by the association Avec Papiers.

Anik Legoupil - The Abyss as a Window 2


● Paper has always appeared to me as a living thing, familiar and profound, and it remains the essential element of my work on canvas.  In childhood, I drafted shades of black and gray with pencil, and spread the colors of dry pastels on downy Canson paper.  When I reached adulthood, I witnessed the fusion of ink and the fibers of the Washi under the touch of my hand. Paper seeped deeply into my identity.   The formation of an artwork was not an initiative; instead I had to see the reflection of some part of me in the material before I began.  Through paper, I discovered that creation of art is vital to the recognition of myself.  Paper has guided me in my search for my position in this unconceivable world, and has helped me gain a foothold, understanding who I am.


● I started creating paper when I returned from Japan to my home region of Brittany, France to work on my roots both figuratively, and literally as I created paper from plants that I grew in my garden.  These new materials, complementing the Japanese translucent papers, gave substance to my work.  There was a time during which the paper would not disunite from the primary tool of the sieve which I used to make the paper; the sieve remained the fundamental structure of my work.  The wooden frame now has replaced the original mold; creating a limit to the paper and an interface with its environment.


● After about twenty years working solely with paper, I finally brought myself to confront the canvas. First, I pierced it to search for the shadow of the paper.  Then I adopted the canvas as the stable foundation which plays with and reflects light through the marbled paper that I place upon it.   The marbled paper is created in oil or permanent ink using traditional methods.  The loss of the original paper-making sieve led me to weave a grid above the paper and canvas.  The net invites the eye to go through this weft, because this is indeed the purpose, the purpose of going beyond, of refining our understanding of the world and considering that our eyes can still observe the imperceptible, giving us the measure of what we don’t quite see but that which we crave to discover.


● The foreground, a winding grid of black lines creates an illusion of variable and immeasurable windowing.   It fragments and binds everything together. Its lines weave and create a texture with the lines of Japanese ink. The universe encompasses the infinitely large and infinitely small.  My vision as an artist is to frame the unknown on a human scale.  The frame, the stripped black wood, and the fabrics on the painting create a safety net that allow us to explore that reality; we can travel safely along the threads of the net and enter the pictorial adventure of the different spaces in the painting.


● This series, called “The Abyss as a Window” started in 2007.  It allies traditional techniques, stemming from my training with masters of each discipline with my continual experimental practice; making of paper, calligraphy, textile design, monotype, paper marbled with oil and ink.  This combination has expanded my field of investigation and my liberty.


● Conscious of the fragility of existence, I attempt through my art to create a bridge connecting tradition with a personal vision of universality.  For me, through my continuing work with paper, a connection with the human family enables a more serene apprehension of cosmos and death.  In “The Abyss as a Window”, I try to frame the emptiness of the black matter on a human scale, in an attempt to create a constant organized landscape as from a selective, defective memory.  Things stop, change and restart infinitely.





Art Apart’ arose from the concept that art lives all the more intimately when it is installed at home


Art lives on the inside, is what we think and hear

We make contact with art in galleries, in lounges, and fairs. We stand amazed at the foot of monuments, in front of works in museums. We see art in some public places, and by chance we can also see it in the street. But art lives mainly at a distance from us.


Then, to follow our passion, we dive into books, we turn to reproductions, the media... And if the desire increases to reduce the distance, to have a permanent contact with a work in particular, constrained by our budgets we make a purchase.

Even when this journey results in a real collection, it obliges the art lover to cross currents of contradictory thoughts (‘art for all’ remains personally inaccessible) and opaque (among the several ‘marché de l’art’ set by gallerists and auctioneers, which establish the rank and value of artists).


How to navigate? How to invest emotionally and financially in art? How to pursue the journey towards living with art that truly connects?


Art lives inside, is what I believe and intend

I invite you, via Art Apart ', into an apartment to share art as at home. The works live in it, in the context of the architecture, the variations of light and the lifestyle of the host. You will be welcomed in a comfortable place to experience your feelings in face of the installations which communicate with you. And you can picture or imagine the intimate relation between the art and your own home environment.

We shall share with pleasure reflections and respectful silences around a cup of tea; the tea bag of your choice will become part of one of the paper creations under development.

So, we wait for your precious participation, for the exchange of our looks and to renew them. Art above all forges links in and among us and weaves us to our environment. This awareness strengthens our commitment to live with the art which suits us.


WORK IN PROGRESS - Jan 23, 2017 - Copyright © 2017 Anik Legoupil

ART APART' CONCEPT - Sep 20, 2016 - Copyright © 2016 Anik Legoupil







Anik Legoupil Un art thérapie


Anik Legoupil nous propose une fenêtre sur le monde, mais aussi un extrait de vie suspendu, qui encourage un processus d’introspection.


Elle nous encourage tout d’abord à suivre les fils de ses compositions. Tels les trois Parques de la mythologie antique, nous pouvons être tour à tour Nona, Decima et Morta en déroulant les fils qui composent les oeuvres d’Anik Legoupil. Nous semblons alors détenir la destinée de ses oeuvres et de ce qu’elles représentent. Et pourtant ce tissage est une invitation de l’artiste à passer au-delà de celui-ci, à « affiner [notre] lecture du monde, et [à] envisager que les yeux nous indiquent comment observer l’imperceptible en nous donnant la mesure de ce que nous ne voyons pas tout à fait mais que nous voulons découvrir absolument. » (Anik Legoupil) Ce qui est mis en oeuvre est alors un jeu optique ayant une vocation de fenêtrage précis. Etat de grâce est d’ailleurs une des oeuvres d’Anik Legoupil la plus représentative de cette pratique du tissage comme focus dans la mesure où plus les papiers s’avèrent riches en couleurs et particulièrement graphiques, plus le maillage se resserre et concentre notre regard sur un détail plastique. Ceci est accentué par l’utilisation d’une encre noire qui souligne le tissage et en délimite un nouveau. Notre oeil est alors tour à tour amené, grâce à ce tissage, à considérer la toile dans son ensemble et en fonction de chaque élément la composant.


Pourtant, ces fils ne sont pas une fin en soi puisque nous sommes libre de ne pas les suivre et de porter notre attention sur le traitement du papier et des couleurs ou encore sur l’utilisation d’un cadre intégré à l’oeuvre. La création et l’utilisation du papier fondent notamment le travail d’Anik Legoupil. Chaque oeuvre est composée de plusieurs papiers de couleurs et de formes différentes se référant à la sélection ou la défaillance de la mémoire de l’Homme. Ils créent ainsi un paysage de pensées et de souvenirs décousus et pourtant liés. Nous découvrons alors une perception de l’univers autre, propre à l’artiste, et qui reflète une certaine intensité sensible. C’est grâce à cette dernière que nous pouvons apercevoir un monde extrêmement vaste, sujet à des focus émotionnels, remarquables par les bords du papier et le cadre, faisant penser aux supports pelliculaires et situant alors l’art d’Anik Legoupil entre photographie et cinéma, entre moment suspendu et action en déroulement, entre souvenir et instant présent. De fait, nous pouvons dérouler la composition, mais aussi nous arrêter et contempler un instant de vie. A l’aide d’imagination et de réminiscence, nous regardons au plus profond de nous-mêmes afin de retrouver cette part de vie représentée par l’artiste dans ses fenêtres artistiques.


D’autre part, nous ne pouvons aborder les oeuvres d’Anik Legoupil sans nous arrêter sur les éléments qui les composent dans la mesure où tous ont une fonction artistique et spirituelle. Le papier tout d’abord occupe une place majeure dans chacune de ses compositions. Support ermettant de jouer avec la transparence, l’idée qu’insufflent l’élaboration et l’assemblage de papiers est d’aller vers une entité, vers un espace plus vaste que celui que nous cnnaissons, voire originel. Il est question d’un ensemble de pages d’histoire qui se nourrissent les unes les autres, d’un ensemble organique qui traduit un rapport au corps entre l’artiste et sa création, et de manière plus vaste entre l’Homme et son environnement. S’ajoute à cette matière le tissage. A ses débuts, l’artiste utilisait un tamis. Cependant, en passant à la toile, ce dernier a disparu. Pour le retrouver et conserver sa signification, Anik Legoupil a choisi de réaliser un tissage autour de la toile, en résonnance avec le tamis originel. Associé au papier, le tissage devient une trame nous permettant de suivre les pages de chaque composition. Plus encore, l’artiste nous offre un nouvel espace, indépendant des

papiers et qui pourtant ne peut s’en dissocier. Par l’utilisation de cette technique, elle a la volonté d’élargir davantage le monde qu’elle représente et à travers cela de montrer

l’étendue de l’être. Enfin, le cadre rejoint l’ouvrage comme un support originel, ou plus

exactement comme une ossature. Il permet à l’artiste d’ouvrir une fenêtre sur une autre fenêtre, c’est-à-dire sur ce qui est représenté. Anik Legoupil nous offre ainsi une métaplaticité qui se questionne sur ce qui n’est pas perceptible et la manière de rendre cela visible par des moyens plastiques, mais aussi sur la place de chacun au sein de la société.


Anik Legoupil élabore ainsi une forme d’art thérapie qui opère par l’observation et

l’introspection. Loin de guérir les maux, cet art engendre un nouveau regard sur le monde et surtout sur notre propre imaginaire interne et purement sensible qui fait oeuvre au même titre que les compositions de l’artiste.




by Annaëlle Poix

Art Critic

Essay by art critic Annaelle Poix

BNF ISBN 978-2-919309-03-0

July 2013


Anik Legoupil
Anik Legoupil - The Abyss as a Window 2
Anik Legoupil - State of Grace - Mixed techniques, papers laid on canvas, cotton threads
Anik Legoupil - Closeup Triptych F - Mixed techniques, papers laid on canvas, cotton threads
Essay by art critic Annaelle Poix


Anik Legoupil
Anik Legoupil - The Abyss as a Window 2
Anik Legoupil - State of Grace - Mixed techniques, papers laid on canvas, cotton threads
Anik Legoupil - Closeup Triptych F - Mixed techniques, papers laid on canvas, cotton threads
Essay by art critic Annaelle Poix