Contemporary artists include art made in the last few decades and there are hundreds of contemporary artists rising in popularity. Many contemporary artists focus on the art of creating rather than the end piece, or focus on modern problems of race, identity, or society. These themes are becoming even more apparent in today’s art and only adds to the growing popularity of contemporary art. These new artists are becoming more and more talented every year and 2019 has exciting things to come for the contemporary art scene. Compiled here is just a small list of some young and anticipated artists rising through the ranks who we are excited to see in 2019.
Art history is a fundamental part of art making, and knowing your stuff is important. Young contemporary artist Trisha Baga takes important ideas from art history and turns them on their head. Baga learns from the masters and uses what came before as a ground for transformation and innovation. Her work in installation and video conjure ideas and debates and she is truly someone to watch out for in 2019.
Brook Hsu evokes strong emotion in her artworks. Creating masterpieces that range from painting and sculpture to carpet pieces Hsu uses the spiritual and mythical to encourage her viewers to feel deeply and think big. She hopes to use the power of art to inspire change, something that could come in handy in 2019.
While critics have often rejected narrative art, Diedrick Brackens uses history and narrative to weave beautiful works of art. Collages of pictures are his starting point, building a narrative without words that can be perceived by his audience in unique ways. He then turns to cotton, a material he uses to honor his African ancestors who worked with cotton while enslaved. His beautiful weaving call upon a narrative that is self conscious and used for the process, making him a contemporary artist to look out for.
Quarles’ deconstructive art is invested in identity. Her work focuses on beauty and acts as a refuge for those questioning their identity. She hopes to make people think about their identity, race, gender, and sexuality. Identity becoming more fluid in 2019 means Quarles work should be watched.
The exaggerated caricature-like characters present in Cheyenne Julien’s artworks lend to the emotion and playfulness of her work. Grappling with issues facing people of color, her works invoke personal narrative and prejudices people of color often face. She hopes to use the power of art to make changes, and her intro into using more color is something to look out for.
Art history is again used as tool for artist Aaron Fowler who uses his assemblage painting to question history and identity. His work contains narrative the can be different for every viewer and create worlds that allow for empathy and connection with others. Questioning identity and history are a growing theme in 2019 and we can not wait to see what Fowler comes up with.
Pair of artists Esther Gauntlett and Jenny Cheng co founded fashion label Gauntlett Cheng. Law and biology students respectively, these women aren’t all about looks. Aiming for fashion for everyone and that enables body positivity, Gauntlett and Cheng don’t shy away from any models, even having dogs on the runway. Their designs are playful and full of energy and often take into account the modern experience of living in a body.
Found object sculptures, collaborative clothing, and meditative videos are staples of Hayley Martell’s art. Focused on self care, emotion, and identity she deals in many contemporary and human problems. Using the process of her work to explore her emotions she hopes to also allow others to explore their feelings and human experience. Pulling peoples eyes to all the moments of life is an exciting prospect for 2019.
Photographer and designer Sara Cwynar explores originality and capitalism in her art. Retaking and layering photos make her work stand out as well as relating to modern capitalism. Her work looks into issues of obsolescence, consumption, technology, and labor in modern society and how it relates to historical ideas. Her work is growing rapidly and will surely be even more amazing in 2019.