Top Ten (Plus One) Emerging Artists of 2011

Top Ten (Plus One) Emerging Artists of 2011

Everyone loves a good list. We chose to highlight art professionals from all over the community--collectors, critics, and curators certainly have a huge impact on the movement of any trend. But that doesn't mean we don't all have our favorite new artists. We even saved a few 30 Under 40 spots for them too. 

Here's a look back on the emerging artists Marina Cashdan, executive editor at Modern Painters and contributor to Frieze, British Vogue, and Interview--to name a few, loves for 2011.

For her list she defined "emerging" as an artist who has caught her eye but has not had more than one solo exhibition at an established gallery and hasn't yet established a solid reputation. Read on for exerpts from her choices.

SAM MESSENGER. NOTHING, 2005 Letterpress

SAM MESSENGER. NOTHING, 2005 Letterpress

Her first choice was England's Sam Messenger, who works mainly in pen and ink on paper, exploring combinations of repetition, geometry and direct observation. His qualities of line and mark making are documented so as to incorporate natural inconsistency and individuality. The work shows a sense of control without hiding the artist's hand. Messenger is included in the "Now WHAT?" exhibition at the Norton Museum of Art, Palm Beach. See more about Sam Lindsay Pollock's blog.

Laura Buckley

Laura Buckley_Stage Fright. In collaboration with Dave MacLean & Haroon Mirza 3 minutes 25 seconds Perspex, motors, speakers, steel, 4 video projections 2009. Photo by Jacqui McIntosh

Irish artist Laura Buckley combines video and kinetic sculptures to create dreamlike mystical-meets-industrial aesthetic.
Buckley on her work:

My work demystifies itself by structural and material means. I expose the process of making and presenting work. In a multi-layered referential conversation between component materials, I use the devices of kinetic sculptural installation and video projection to question art and illusion, reality and perception.

Jess Flood-Paddock

Jess Flood-Paddock. Big Lobster Supper by Jess Flood-Paddock, 2010 © Jess Flood-Paddock

British artist Jess Flood-Paddock may be pushing the 'emerging' category, but the artist certainly hasn't gotten due recognition in her very young career, or at least not in the States. Her practice is rooted in the discourse surrounding that of sculpture and the studio. Her works address representation and its multifarious nature: Her sculptures touch on the representational (depicting a raspberry or a pile of newspapers, for example), the suggestive (referencing sculpture itself, like Aztec sculptures and public monuments) and others represent the act of making. 

Peter Ainsworth

Peter Ainsworth_The Drowned World, 2010

British photographer and filmmaker Peter Ainsworth is drawn to elements on the periphery of the landscape. 
From the artist, about his work:

My practice explores how various structures, aesthetics and social interactions form the complex urban environment that surrounds us all. What unifies my approach to art creation is a concentration on sites that are in flux and the urge to make the familiar strange so that I am able to reveal a new interpretation of lived reality.

Aaron King

Aaron King Untitled 2008 Pencils and glue 33 x 33 x 33 inches each

American Aaron King's piles, multiples, or modular structures are used to imply an accumulation. If something is piling up it is inherently tied to a larger indefinite number and the viewer, recognizing it as part of a larger whole, can develop a narrative around it. To further the confusion, he takes recognizable things and changes their properties through materials and the manner in which they are handled. 

Leidy Churchman

Leidy Churchman_Cart In Theory_2008 Oil on metal, wood, rock & bell with found cart 22x21x11 inches

David Colman's description of transgender American artist Leidy Churchman in The Moment blog's "Nifty Fifty" story was wonderfully stated: "His paintings and sculptures simultaneously reference the simple figures of early American primitive painting, the random amusements in the strange object pairings of Dadaism and the Pop sexuality of 1960s artists Alex Katz, David Hockney and John Wesley. Uniting them all is an almost childlike sense of fun and mischief that makes the work thoroughly enjoyable." 

Saul Melman

Saul Melman. The Best of All Possible Worlds. C Print_30 inches x 30 inches, 2009

American Saul Melman makes sculptures and installations that function as mnestic events--works that feel like an event that has already occurred. For PS1's "Greater New York" exhibition, Melman gilded the building's giant, decrepit double furnace with gold leaf.

Saul writes:
Using my memory of an event is a frequent starting point for making work. Through the process of excavating the memory, playing with it and then projecting it outwards for the viewer to experience, the concreteness/self-referential-ness of the initial memory gets transformed into something else, perhaps something that only has traces of the initial memory, but more importantly, the transformation allows a space for the viewer to project their own imagination onto/into the work. 

Theo Rosenblum

Theo Rosenblum. Ice Capades_2007. Oil on panel_24 x 24 inches

Painter and sculptor Theo Rosenblum touches on themes involving the natural order of the world, interruptions of that order, and mankind's artificial replications. His work is a reaction to- and skepticism about this interruption of mankind and nature, drawing on mythical imaginary worlds and scenarios. ArtForum writer Jeffrey Uslip described Rosenblum's recent show at Vito Schnabel's gallery space, titled "Raw Deal" (41 Wooster Street, Nov. 12-Dec.15, 2010), as "a journey into an enchanted forest of kitsch, craft, and the adolescent mind."

Ryan Sullivan

Ryan Sullivan_July 6, 2010 - September 3, 2010_Oil and latex on canvas_59x 45 in

Ryan Sullivan's abstract paintings, created by applying chemicals to canvas and allowing them to independently shape the surface of his work, reference drip paintings of the abstract expressionists. However, Sullivan's "drip paintings" bypass the romantic notion of being made by the artist's hand, instead being created by alchemic chemical reactions. Sullivan was recently included in a group show curated by Clarissa Dalrymple at Marc Selwyn Fine Art in L.A., featuring an autonomous series of paintings by Sullivan, alongside works by Matt Hoyt, Cassandra MacLeod and Lucy Raven, all who are relatively below the radar in the art world. 

Anton Zolotov

Anton Zolotov. Swim, 2010. Oil on canvas. 54 x 54 in

Russian artist Anton Zolotov uses the streets of New York City to collect materials for his paintings--found objects that he adheres to his canvases, creating layers and added dimensions that make the painting almost sculptural. The materials he collects for his paintings all have a sentimental value to him; he often lives with them before they are "sacrificed" to his canvas. As the artist says: "Painting is a recollection of existence, my existence (personally) is in the streets of NYC. It will be a record of my actions on canvas, a tracking device and a visual pun ... hopefully".

Miyeon Lee

Miyeon Lee. M7_2009. Oil on canvas 10 x 14 inches

Miyeon Lee is perhaps beyond emerging, however I thought I'd include her in this liminal 11th slot, as she has not had due recognition for her carefully detailed paintings of limitless spaces, akin to Vija Celmins's seascapes and night skies. Lee has a highly attuned sense for organic detail combined with an abstract quality that makes her work draw you in. 


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