When meeting people for the first time, I sense they think I'm a smidge cooler upon learning that I know up and coming artists. I may be wrong, and for those who think so, feel free to stop reading. If you are in the camp of "WOW, SO DO YOU KNOW A LOT OF EMERGING ARTISTS!???", then I hereby dedicate this post to you.
First, there are a ton of #artists out there. Go onto Instagram if you want to find some. The challenge is narrowing down the massive pool of options to figure out whose work I find compelling and appropriate for a given client and project. Generally this means I'm considering whos work 1) stands out from the crowd as being interesting; 2) is well executed; and 3) is getting notable positive exposure through reputable gallery shows, fairs, and press. *Note that I'm able to confidently assess these seemingly subjective points because I see art all the time and have accordingly developed a discerning taste.
SO, below are 3 emerging artists that I like. They're all in an early-ish point in their career and meet the credentials I mentioned above. They're in no particular order, and this list is NOT comprehensive; there are many many artists that I consider to be quality emerging artists, and maybe, just maybe, this is part one in a blogoseries.
1. Amanda Valdez
Amanda Valdez creates organic forms that incorporate various types of paint application and hand-stitched embroidery. The forms that she creates are not representational, though some are inspired by the female form. Valdez is interested in studying art making practices across cultures around the world and has done numerous interational residencies to expand her knowledge of other practices such as sewing, pottery making, and hand-dying fabrics. She's represented by Denny Gallery on the Lower East Side in NYC.
2. Matthew Kirk
Matthew Kirk creates geometric abstractions that act as an aerial map with gestures and forms that look somewhat representational and totally abstracted depending on your interpretation. You can follow different lines, pick out shapes that look familiar, and just "hang out in there" (Kirk's words). Within these not-so-little (some pieces are 9 feet wide) worlds are a ton of transparent and opaque forms that create layers of interest. Kirk is represented by Fierman Gallery, also on the Lower East Side, and his piece were quite the talk of the town at the Miami art fairs last December.
3. Doug Fogelson
Photography lovers: be sure to do some Googling on Doug Fogelson. He's a contemporary photographer who consistently experiments with the medium, often playing with light and the chemicals used in the development process to create partially abstracted partially representational ephemeral works. His work has been shown and collected around the country, and he is the recipient of notable awards within the photography and art community. He's represented by the always fabulous Sasha Wolf, who has a gallery space in her very cool Upper West Side apartment.