Born in Tehran, Iran, Lara Minassian is of Armenian descent. As a result of the revolution in 1980, she moved to Nicosia, Cyprus, where she attended the Melkonian Educational Institute. In 1983, reunited with her family she moved to California.

She earned an MFA with an emphasis in painting from Claremont Graduate University. Lara has taught art courses at various colleges in the Los Angeles area. She has taken part in various exhibitions in Southern California and currently resides and works in the Los Angeles.