Artistic Vanguard 2023,
Now in its sixth year, The Artsy Vanguard is our annual list of promising artists working today.
The 2023 edition focuses on some exceptional talent spanning across generations, geographies, media and messages.
Their creativity ranges from sensual abstractions, to delicate depictions of the natural world, to bold narrative photography.
These artists deftly address the pressing concerns of our time, while unabashedly pursuing the path of the contemporary artist.
Through their work, we experience art’s ability to plumb the depths of human emotion, offer catharsis amid trauma, and summon beauty when it is needed most.
From participation in prestigious exhibitions, to representation in prestigious international fairs, to notable auction records, The Artsy Vanguard 2023 artists have begun to capture the attention of the global art community.
Like the avant-garde artists of years past, their momentum is building, however, one need not read their biographies to understand why these artists stand out.
B. 1993, Nottingham, England. She lives and works in London.
It is difficult to accurately describe what Sarah Cunningham’s paintings depict, she works in oil, sometimes on large linen or cotton canvas, sometimes on small pieces of paper.
The images that emerge from thick, gestural paint strokes – in blue, green, red, yellow, white or black – give the feeling of a landscape.
There’s also a mountaintop, a canopy of foliage, and a shadowy figure surrounded by a door, but more often than not, the paint threatens to overwhelm the subject,
Which calls to mind the intense urban scenes of Frank Auerbach, or the stormy seas that JMW Turner dissolves into abstraction.
B. 1982, Rotherham, England. He lives and works in London.
In his warehouse studio in east London, Harminder Judge stands surrounded by two large plaster works mounted on the wall.
As if they were portals, the rectangular, abstract pieces seem to invite the viewer into another world teeming with ghosts.
Forms emerge from the dark surface, and blooming colors are layered with polished surfaces that the artist describes as “shiny, glowing, stone-like objects that possess an inner strength and project a painterly presence.”
His current works give off a Rorschach feel and, collectively, chart a path through the unconscious mind as it flies and searches for meaning through recognition.
B. 1986, St. Louis, Missouri. He lives and works in St. Louis and Kalagon, Ghana.
Drawing is a medium that dates back to Basil Kincaid’s childhood, when he would scribble in church to avoid drowsiness.
This art remains at the heart of the 37-year-old artist’s practice, which today also includes pictorial collage, installation, performance and textile works.
In fact, the textile works are the pieces the St. Louis native is known for: large, colorful, carefully crafted quilts.
However, drawing remains his “home base” to this day, serving as a generative entry point into other media, as well as a meditative habit that allows a more intuitive emotional impulse to guide his work.
Kincaid’s small studio at home is a world of his drawings, with illustrations scattered on every surface, hung on the wall, and spread across his drafting table.
The images themselves are often characterized by repetition of layers, emphasizing outlines and similar silhouettes of faces and figures.