School of Music Visiting Artist
Angie Crabtree is a painter whose current body of work uses precious gemstones as a means to unpack the psychology and allure of luxury culture. Growing up in Northern California, Angie would find crystals and rocks on walks with her grandfather who was a gold-mining hobbyist.
Using oil paint, she creates magnified portraits of real gemstones. Her most well-known commissions include “The Pink Promise” diamond and Chopard’s massive 342 carat “Queen of Kalahari” diamond. Angie painted her first diamond — at 5 feet tall — in 2012 for her exhibition, “Living the Dream.” Inspired by the success of her first big exhibition and the abstract patterns, Angie fell deeper in love with gems and continued painting more.
Diamonds and gemstones come from nature, and are recut by human hands — this collaboration between artisans and nature’s artifacts yield what society agrees are some of the world’s most valuable objects. Angie’s work offers a rigorous study of light and optics and how these formal characteristics of painting are intertwined with our perception of excess, wealth and luxury. The artist approaches the subject matter as portraiture for modern day relics for a world that loves beautiful trophies.
Angie graduated from the San Francisco Art Institute, and taught high school art for eight years. In 2015, she started painting full-time, receiving large commissions by both corporate and private collectors around the world. Since, her popularity continues to grow and demand for her work has been on the rise. She says “I’m living my dream: painting gems today is an extension of my childhood fascination with kaleidoscopes and colors.”
Angie lives and works in Los Angeles, CA. Her studio is not open to the public, but you can contact us for private viewings.