Art’s rising rock stars
Blank walls but your budget doesn't stretch to an Emin or Hirst? Here's 12 cool, collectable artists who won't require you to sell a loved one (and may prove to be a good investment).
It’s not just models who are ‘Super’, the art world has them too, all instantly recognisable by one name. Come on down… Emin, Hockney, Banksy, Hirst – all iconic and none of them willing to get out of bed (even an unmade one) for less than £10,000 (*cough* or more). The great news is that you can see all these artists’s work, up close and personal, at the Fresh:Art Fair from Fri 20- Sun 22 Sep at Ascot Racecourse.
We’ve long been a fan of London’s Frieze Art Fair in Regents Park and Battersea’s Affordable Art Fair, to ogle (and buy) established and emerging artists, so it’s with much excitement that a contemporary art fair is popping up right on our doorstep. Some of the best galleries (Muddy Award-winning ones too) in the UK and Ireland, will bring more than 6,000 pieces, many priced from £500 to £5,000, including the likes of the Carina Haslam gallery in Great Missenden, Kingfisher Art in Woodstock and Burford’s Wren Fine Art.
As much as we would love to have a Hockney hanging on our wall, the Muddy budget doesn’t quite stretch. So here’s 10 artists who are hot right now and available to buy at this year’s Fresh: Art Fair in Ascot. Keep an eye on this lot.
Chris Levine: represented Young Jamieson Fine Art, Marlborough.
One of the World’s leading light artists, Chris Levine is best known for his utterly fresh portrayal of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II The Lightness of Being. The National Portrait Gallery described it as the most evocative image of a royal by any artist. With elaborate lighting, the Queen was required to sit very still repeatedly for eight seconds at a time, and between each stage she simply closed her eyes to rest. Levine was struck by the beauty of her meditative state and snapped the shutter.
He is only the second artist to take a formal portrait of His Holiness the Dalai Lama for his recent 80th birthday and has produced unique portraits of Kate Moss and Grace Jones among many others. His appeal is in his originality both in process and outcome. It is an iconic image and Young Jamieson will bring limited edition prints of Chris Levine’s most memorable work.
Kev Munday: represented by Forest Gallery Fine Art, Petworth
Happy-go-lucky Kev Munday will undoubtedly bring a smile to your face with his unique style that defies age and offers up a distinctly off-the-wall approach. Deckchairs, violins, skateboards, clothing and buildings – there is no object that does not deserve the delights of Kev Munday. Using an assortment of mediums, from marker pens to digital art, Munday finds his inspiration from Japanese kawaii graphics, South American tribal art and the sheer energy and movement of colour. Munday is slowly but surely making his way to the big time having already been commissioned by Disney and Fracture Skateboards to brighten up their brands.
Hildegard Pax: represented by Cube Gallery, London
Hildegard Pax is a glass artist producing both installations and wall-hung pieces. Her extraordinary work is brought to life by natural or artificial light, with colour and intensity subtly shifting as the light changes. She was a finalist in the London Contemporary Art Prize 2018 and her work is held in private collections in the UK, USA, South America and Hong Kong. There are many glass artists but what makes Pax’ work stand out is its subtlety and use of light. There is much more she can do.
George Underwood is a genuine art world rock star that not many people have found and those that have are busy adding to their collections. After many years designing album covers for his music business friends, George began his figurative painting career. Influenced by surrealism, mythology and artists such as Hieronymus Bosch and Bocklin. His life long friend David Bowie described George ‘among the top figurative painters coming out of the UK right now. There’s a sublime isolation surrounding his subjects that really touches the viewer, the figures being both heroic and vulnerable simultaneously’.
Duda, represented by Sol Art Gallery, Dublin
If you love pop art, then you’ll become addicted to the work of Dublin artist, Duda. He’s been showcasing his work both nationally and internationally and will be hosting his new solo show in October this year. Duda was one of 33 renowned artists to be invited to contribute to a project in 4 World Trade Centre, launched in early 2017. Art critics for the The New York Times, Forbes, ABC News, The Irish Times went blown away by the contribution to Graffiti In The Sky. Duda continues to catch the eye of collectors with his unique style of contemporary pop art. One for the Muddy wish list.
Peter Wileman: represented by Lime Tree Gallery, Bristol
Peter Wileman’s work is instantly recognisable but always different. Many artists produce very similar works that suffer from monotony …they find a formula and repeat it. Not so Wileman …six of his paintings in a line on a wall each tell a very different story. Wileman is a very well established artist in art circles. He is a Past President and Fellow of the Royal Institute of Oil Painters, a Member of the Royal Society of Marine Artists and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. His style is bold and vigorous, both in the use of colour and handling of paint, as he explores the effect of light on his subject. Seeking atmosphere through light and colour, he works in varying degrees of abstraction.
Rod Nelson: represented by Paragon Gallery, Cheltenham
Rod Nelson is one of the UK’s leading woodcut printmakers, known for his immediately recognisable depictions of moving water that he describes as “the sweet spot between rigid control and creative freedom”. Paying homage to the great masters of Chinese and Japanese art, each unique impression is printed on Okawara acid-free paper using traditional lightfast inks. These technically dazzling and visually sumptuous artworks represent a seamless fusion of the ancient and the contemporary.
Rod’s work has been exhibited widely; his 2017 print “High Falls 1” was shown the International Print Centre Winter Exhibition in New York before being selected for the 2018 Royal Academy Summer Show, where all 50 impressions sold out and his work will be included in the National Original Print Exhibition at the Bankside Gallery later this year. Having shown in London, Shanghai, Kunming, the United States and Germany, his work has an extraordinary global appeal.
Bruce McLean: represented by Paragon Gallery, Cheltenham.
The subject of an audacious one-day retrospective at the Tate, aged 27, Bruce McLean continues to exhibit widely throughout the world. His work is held in the permanent collections of the Tate, the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, MOMA in New York, and the National Gallery of Modern Art in Edinburgh. One of the most dynamic, exciting and innovative artists working in Britain today, McLean has spent more than 50 years redefining the boundaries of sculpture, painting and performance. He describes himself as an “action sculptor” and infuses his work with a self-professed love and aptitude for dance. The sculptural properties of gesture and movement are pivotal; “I don’t think of what I do as art,” he says. “I think of it as sculpture. Even if it’s a painting, it’s a painting I made as a sculptor”.
Iryna Yermolova: represented by Paragon Gallery, Cheltenham.
Iryna came to Britain from Ukraine in 2005. Her star began to rise in 2014 when she was selected by The Royal Institute of Oil Painters to hang at their annual exhibition in the Mall Galleries. She has been selected every year since then. ‘I bought my first Yermolova in 2012 for a few hundred pounds. I could not expect to buy another today for less than a few thousand… and well worth it,’ says Anthony Wardle, organiser of the Fresh:Art Fair. Her subjects are often women, sometimes nude but always sensitive, and natural, showing a strong understanding of the female form. She has produced some excellent still life work and early marine subjects and landscapes. Very collectable and something you’ll love to look at every day.
Alea Pinar Du Pre, represented by Sol Art Gallery, Dublin
Warning! Do not look at this image after a few too many drinkies. If you think the room is spinning, Alea Pinar Du Pre’s style could tip you over the edge. The Austrian Turkish artist’s mixed media style and iconic images are starting to become globally known, exhibiting in Dublin since 2015 and her portraiture, which looks like a distorted photography, is a blend all of her own making. Mesmerising and weird at the same time.
Paul Doran, represented by Sol Art Gallery, Dublin
A young artist from Belfast, Paul Doran’s work is very much intertwined with his upbringing and visits to the Ivory Coast. In April Paul had his first solo show with Sol Art Gallery here in Dublin entitled Diaspora. The Irish Times art critic Aidan Dunne described his work as ‘colourful, spirited, gestural paintings, usually with busy surfaces, their rhythmic patterns and imagery freely mixing abstraction and figuration’. His work is big and bold and will is the a showstopper on any wall.
Peter Graham: represented by Art Salon, Bath
Well known as one of Scotland’s most gifted and distinctive Modern Colourists, Peter Graham’s work has a flamboyant almost eccentric style using rich colours. Broad wide brushwork combines with looser, more fluid strokes to produce bold landscapes, cityscapes and more recently still life. He is a past Vice President of the Royal Institute of Oil Painters. Why a favourite? …for the sheer vibrancy of the colour and for that underlying knowledge that his work is painted on-the-spot, captured by a wonderful skill and nothing else (strictly no photographs). Very collectable.
EXCLUSIVE TICKET OFFER: Muddy readers can claim a free ticket to this year’s Fresh:Art Fair at Ascot on Fri 20 – Sun Sep. Quote MUDDY at checkout. Fresh:Art Fair, Ascot Racecourse, High St, Ascot SL5 7JX