Out with the old and in with the new … 2020 is almost over and the new year is upon us!
We’ve been for a wild ride this past year; and what a unique and fickle one it’s been! Funny, considering we’ve all been driven into the confines of our homes with limited engagement, that we’ve endured such unusual circumstances. The covid pandemic has undoubtedly been an unprecedented turn of events, but we’ve also had several other big changes in 2020! What about the Black Lives Matter demonstrations or the US’s first female Vice President?
With so much going on in the world around us… Not only have artists received a load of inspiration, but they also have the time needed to produce their vision to the fullest extent! Follow along as Artsper uncovers 2020’s most influential artists.
Everybody knows Banksy! This mysterious, highly influential artist has dazzled the art world on several occasions. This year, in particular, Banksy‘s artworks have demonstrated clear reference to covid-19. In London, England’s Underground Tube, he sneakily painted the train cart while disguised as a cleaner. The work was an incentive for the public to wear masks to avoid spreading or contracting the virus. Unfortunately, it has since been removed but his premise still stands!
The architect of the future! Daniel Arsham ‘s work has earned him a spot on Artsper’s list of most influential artists of 2020. Why? Because of his unique and intriguing perspectives! By using elements of architecture, archeology, sculpture, and performance, his artworks manipulate and distort our current understandings of structure and space. The artist challenges the notions of past, present, and future by creating works from contemporary life that appear from the past, that would seemingly be uncovered in the future! Ultimately, Daniel Arsham has shown a fascinating paradox.
This strong artist has cast Black narratives onto canvas for years. But with the 2020 Black Lives Matter (#BML) movement, her fame only grew! After the Breonna Taylor devastation, Sherald painted the young victim for the cover of Vanity Fair. Not only will Taylor live forever through Sherald’s portrait, but the work also serves as a reminder of the critical need for social reform. Sherald claims this piece is her contribution towards activism and the ongoing protests. Through her noble social engagement, Amy Sherald earned her spot on Artsper’s list of 2020’s most influential artists!
Known as the “Mast of Doubt”, Gerhard Richter‘s grand farewell took place in 2020 during his final major exhibition! The 88-year-old artist showcased “Painting After All”, taking up 2 whole floors in the Breuer. In 2020’s unique climate, with art institutions desperate to demonstrate their social impact, Richter’s art asks, “what contemporary art and what does it do”? This art is easily recognizable through his skepticism and blurry visuals. Richter offers this to his audience: a calm voice that says it’s okay to not know the answer, ponder over it, and work at it… A powerful message with immense meaning during this year of uncertainty.
Francine Van Hove
The global pandemic has led to a lot of free time! French artist Francine Van Hove exquisitely captures these simple joys that derive from doing nothing at all. Our homes are our safe havens, a place of comfort and intimacy. Van Hove has curated a timeless collection of artworks that encompasses this sense of “nothingness”. Western society is notoriously known for its “go-go-go” mentality, always in a hurry for something! Despite the horrors the pandemic brought, it’s also brought a slower, more relaxed time… one we haven’t seen in a while!
Artist Liu Ye has exhibited around the world, most notably for his “Storytelling” exhibit. The Beijing-based artist debuted his first solo exhibition with renowned art dealer David Zwirner. Liu’s spot on Artsper’s top most influential artists derives from his domination in contemporary art’s secondary market! His sales at both Christie’s and Phillips were remarkable considering the challenges the art market has faced during this year of struggle within the art market!
Whether you are eager or sad to see 2020 come to end, 2021 is coming right on time and will surely hold an abundant supply of new global memories! Historically, artists have drawn from their real lives and interpreted their vision into an artwork. Today, our contemporary artists undoubtedly do the same. And 2020 has provided ample inspiration… We hope you enjoyed our little year-end round-up! Artsper wishes you happy holidays and an enchanting new year!