10 Contemporary Artists to Watch

The term ‘emerging artist’ has become watered-down in recent years, but these artists to watch are notable for reaching certain critical milestones in their careers at a young age, which has taken them from regional recognition to international acclaim.

Diamond Stingily, 28

Stingily’s contribution to this year’s New Museum Triennial is a white-knuckler.

The E.L.G. (2018) installation comprises of a single brick balanced on the crossbar of a swing-set, an affecting scene which suggests a child in danger, hinting at state-sponsored violence and its impact on black children.

Max Hooper Schneider, 36

Schneider creates brilliantly unclassifiable work – meticulously assembled aquariums and terrariums which contain environments where natural and man-made elements combine to create a scene of startling, otherworldly beauty.

Schneider’s works have been accepted into a number of prestigious museums, such as the Rubell Family Collection.

Marianna Simnett, 32

Even those with strong stomachs find it hard to watch Simnett’s work and it was reported that two audience members fainted during her 2015 showcase at the Serpentine Pavilion.

Simnett’s work explores control and purity through storylines and images familiar with fans of horror – a syringe slowly approaching a throat, or a worm emerging from a woman’s lips.

Lu Yang, 34

Known for her feverish video games, films, and installations, the new-media artist’s work looks to both science and religion to make sense of a seemingly senseless world.

A Lu Yang exhibition feels like you’ve entered a busy arcade, complete with electronic music, quick cuts, and flashing lights – all that’s missing is online pokies NZ.

Hayden Dunham, 30

With bold, colourful sculptures which seem to melt, ooze, and discharge clouds of steam, Dunham has for past exhibitions, such as at Red Bull Arts New York and Andrea Rosen Gallery, created unique chemical compounds and released them from the spaces’ ventilation systems.

Liu Shiyuan, 32

Shiyuan’s recent exhibition at Tanya Bonakdar Gallery – also her first solo at a major US gallery – was a three-part visual exploration showcasing her talent in photography, film, and large-scale installation.

Xiaoyu Weng, associate curator of Chinese art at the Guggenheim noted the exhibition as a career milestone for the young artist.

Paul Mpagi Sepuya, 36

Teasing the viewer with a potent interplay between photographer and subject, Sepuya prods at the boundaries of the photographic medium by offering a new way to look at photography and eroticism.

Through a fracturing and juxtaposition of the body, Sepuya alludes to how strange the relationship between photographer and subject can be.

Loie Hollowell, 30

Hollowell is a painter of brightly coloured oils of abstract forms which allude to both surging bodies and abundant landscapes and includes bowed extrusions built from high density foam and sawdust – a style which welcome comparisons to the evocative geometries of Georgia O’Keeffe.

Raphaela Vogel, 30

Vogel’s films, sculptures, and engaging installations explore the nature of the 21st-century dilemma of man versus machine, analysing the deeply fraught relationship.

Vogel was referred to as ‘the heavy metal version’ of Pipilotti Rist by Raphael Gyax, curator of the Migros Museum of Contemporary Art in Zurich.

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