Artists to Watch | 2021
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Artists to Watch | 2021

Jan 3, 2021

Thinking of buying a new piece for the new year? Take a look at our guide to the artists to watch in 2021 and beyond…

Banksy

Demand for Banksy work shows no sign of abating. Prices for his screen prints sky-rocketed in 2020, with some reports detailing a rise of more than 80 per cent. And with the artist’s Pest Control site the only place to buy new work, competition for pieces on the secondary market is fierce (see our collection here). While many were forced to work from home in 2020, Banksy took to the streets to document the strange times we’re living through: among his new pieces, a boy playing with an NHS superhero doll at Southampton General Hospital (May); a girl hula-hooping in coronavirus-stricken Nottingham (October); and a woman’s sneeze blowing up a steep Bristol street (December).

Game Changer by Banksy

Game Changer by Banksy

Tracey Emin

Possibly the most heart-wrenching opening of 2020, the Royal Academy’s The Loneliness of the Soul exhibition pairs Tracey Emin’s paintings, sculptures and neon works with pieces by Edvard Munch that were personally selected by her. A reminder of her incredible skill as an artist, as well as her unique ability to convey life’s rawest emotions, the exhibition opened in the shadow of Emin’s cancer diagnosis earlier in the year (she is currently in remission). It’s on until late February 2021 and we highly recommend a visit. In the meantime, see more by Emin here.

Tracey Emin/Edvard Munch: The Loneliness of the Soul at the Royal Academy

Tracey Emin/Edvard Munch: The Loneliness of the Soul at the Royal Academy

Tracey Emin/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York; Edvard Munch/Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York; David Parry

Tim Fishlock

Labelled ‘a psychedelic modern day masterpiece’ by Hang-Up’s founder Ben Cotton, Tim Fishlock’s most recent collection hit the gallery in November 2020 to a brilliant reception. Titled ‘THE POEM WILL RESEMBLE YOU’, the collection features a spinning wheel of fortune that generates unsettling, randomly-generated poems at odds with its bold, joyful typography and gameshow-like mechanism. Look out for new releases from Fishlock in 2021.

Tim Fishlock photographed at Hang-Up Gallery

Tim Fishlock photographed at Hang-Up Gallery

Simon Kallas

Nancy Fouts

Hailed as a modern-day surrealist and collected by gallery owner Ben Cotton, the late Nancy Fouts has always been a firm favourite at Hang-Up. Last year, we were honoured to host a retrospective of her work entitled Fags Birds and A Couple of Guns, which celebrated the artist’s uniquely intelligent and playful humour through off-the-wall taxidermy and bizarre re-renderings of Old Masters. Keep an eye out for new editions coming soon from Hang-Up to continue to honour her memory.

Fags, Birds and A Couple of Guns at Hang-Up Gallery

Fags, Birds and A Couple of Guns at Hang-Up Gallery

Patrick Hughes

We welcomed Patrick Hughes and his famous ‘reverspective’ 3D paintings to our roster in 2020 (catch our interview with him here). With works in public collections including the Tate Britain and the V&A and exhibitions scheduled in New York, London, San Francisco and Cologne for 2021, Hughes is best known for his unique technique which creates interactive optical illusions for viewers of his paintings. Long before rainbows popped up in every suburban window in praise of the NHS, Hughes twisted them into surreal shapes for his paintings too, leaning them upside down against walls or spilling out of paint cans.

Patrick Hughes poses with his work

Patrick Hughes poses with his work

KAWS

The Brooklyn Museum will host NYC’s first major retrospective of work by KAWS (real name Brian Donnelly), from February to September 2021. Entitled KAWS:WHAT PARTY, the exhibition spans 25 years and includes everything from the artist’s early graffiti studies to his famous cartoon-esque Companion figures. Now firmly established as one of America’s foremost contemporary artists, KAWS has had an unorthodox career path, peppering phone booths with his posters of reimagined cartoon characters and selling his images on streetwear through Tokyo-based label Original Fake, before latterly recording a price of $14.8 million for his painting, The Kaws Album (sold at Sotheby’s Hong Kong in 2019).

KAWS photographed with one of his originals

KAWS photographed with one of his originals

Art Insider

Delphine Lebourgeois

Feminist artist Lebourgeois continues to break boundaries – most recently with a work specially-created to save London’s Vagina Museum from closure (in the print, three women wear elaborate head dresses decorated with female genitalia). Long concerned with female emancipation, the artist has applied an even sharper focus over the past couple of years, creating armies of women who rewrite the history of female repression and are empowered to assert their own sexuality. Her recent series, Witches, celebrates the power of women who aren’t afraid to be themselves – and we can’t wait to see what she’ll do next.

Witches originals in Delphine Lebourgeois' studio

Witches originals in Delphine Lebourgeois' studio

Harland Miller

Modern Renaissance man Harland Miller is popular with film stars and musicians, a fact which has propelled the artist into the public consciousness and made him a firm favourite with collectors. Last year, Yorkshire-born Miller held his largest exhibition to date at York Art Gallery which acted as a love letter to his home and further cemented his appeal. His irreverent renderings of Penguin book covers continue to be in high demand: his painting Incurable Romantic Seeks Dirty Filthy Whore raised £214,200 at Phillips in October 2020.

Harland Miller: York, So Good They Named It Once. Photographed by Charlotte Graham

Harland Miller: York, So Good They Named It Once. Photographed by Charlotte Graham

York Art Gallery

Marc Quinn

We’re honoured to have recently begun to sell work by Marc Quinn. Emerging from the YBA movement as one of the UK’s foremost contemporary artists, Quinn continues to produce thought-provoking pieces that challenge conservative thought. We’re particularly excited about his highly publicised delayed public work, Our Blood, which looks set to open on the steps of the New York Public Library in 2022. Highlighting the plight of the world’s refugees, the installation will include two identical frozen blocks of blood, one made with the donations of more than 5,000 resettled refugees, the other with blood from other donors. The sculptures will stand in a Norman Foster-designed pavillion, while recorded stories from the refugees will be on show throughout the city.

Marc Quinn photographed by Mary McCartney

Marc Quinn photographed by Mary McCartney

Bridget Riley

Another artist who is new to Hang-Up, Riley was once described in the Sunday Times as ‘the Queen of Op Art’, and has been the subject of two recent retrospectives (both in London, at the Hayward in 2019 and Cristea Roberts in 2020 respectively). Among the world’s most significant living artists, she’s been making her technically-exacting paintings and screen prints for more than 50 years – you can see her complete prints in a newly-published book by Thames & Hudson. Riley will celebrate her 90th birthday in 2021, and continues to exhibit across the world, with shows at the Yale Center for British Art and Surrey’s Lightbox Gallery this year.

Bridget Riley in her London Studio

Bridget Riley in her London Studio

Colin Dodgson/Art Partner

Dave White

With his exhibition, Extinct, on show at Hang-Up until March, White has been extremely busy over the past year: A successful collab with the UK sneaker store size? and sports apparel brand New Era, an exhibition in the grand surrounds of Skibo Castle, and new work displayed at Devon’s Drang Gallery completed the picture. Extinct, which features detailed, large-scale paintings and sketches of dinosaurs, is the result of 18 months of secretive preparation, and a reminder of how fragile and fleeting life on Planet Earth can be.

EXTINCT at Hang-Up Gallery

EXTINCT at Hang-Up Gallery

Simon Kallas

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