Photo credit: David Vega
Annie Legnini (b. 1994) is an Italian-American artist born and raised in the Bronx. She is best known for her mixed media portraits made out of paint and recycled materials. Legnini creates faces in realistic detail with acrylic or oil paint and then collages repurposed objects on the remainder of the portrait to create features like hair, glasses, and clothing.
In her work, you will find recycled childhood memorabilia and common materials such as ripped up newspapers, shattered CDs, expired metrocards, broken headphones, and cut up Pokémon cards. This contrast between painted realism and recycled objects challenges the eye of the viewer to distinguish between the real and the realistic, while igniting the imagination for uses beyond materials that seem to be ordinary, outdated, or disposable.
The artist’s relationship with portraiture is structured by her desire to have people feel deeply, honestly, and authentically seen – and so she intimately studies and recreates faces with obsessive detail.
Legnini is the creator of Bronx Faces, a collaborative community art project that pairs the stories & experiences of Bronx natives with a mixed media portrait.