Here Are 7 Artists You Might Not Know, But Should—With Shows You Can See This February

We've got shows from Hong Kong to Düsseldorf.

Christina Nicodema, Primate Temple (2019). Courtesy of Hollis Taggart.
Christina Nicodema, Primate Temple (2019). Courtesy of Hollis Taggart.

The new decade is shaping up to be quite the global spectacle already with corona-virus in China, protests in Hong Kong, impeachments and election dramas in the US, and the seemingly never-ending Brexit withdrawal unfolding in the UK. In uncertain times artists have always been tried-and-true soothsayers of the way forward, and in 2020 that proves no exception. If you’re ready to see the work of a few interesting, and perhaps unfamiliar artists, here are 6 contemporary talents (and one little-known, historical artist) with shows you can see around the world this February.

 

Miyoshi Barosh, “Love” at Luis De Jesus Los Angeles

Miyoshi Barosh, I Keep Going On (2008). Courtesy of Luis de Jesus Los Angeles.

Miyoshi Barosh, I Keep Going On (2008). Courtesy of Luis de Jesus Los Angeles.

In the early 2000s Los Angeles-based artist Miyoshi Barosh started making large-scale textile sculptures that combined the intimacy of craft with the bold, irreverence of Pop. Though vibrantly colorful and often playfully ironic, a dystopian sense of decay and death characterized these pieces. After the artist’s untimely death last year, the artworks have taken on new poignancy; they’re spirited, contradictory, and full of mischief and the carnivalesque madness of contemporary life. 

Miyoshi Barosh’s “Love” is on view through February 15, 2020, at Luis De Jesus Los Angeles, 2685 S. La Cienega Boulevard, Los Angeles 

 

Richard Streitmatter-Tran, “We No Longer See the Stars” at de Sarthe 

Installation view of We No Longer See Stars, 2019. Courtesy of de Sarthe Gallery

Installation view of “We No Longer See Stars,” 2019. Courtesy of de Sarthe Gallery.

In this exhibition, Vietnamese artist Richard Streitmatter-Tran pulls viewers into a tumultuous and immersive staging of new paintings, sculptures, and interactive installations that address global political unrest and our contemporary state of constant crisis. Particularly striking is Bless the Beasts and the Children (2019-20), a work consisting of large-scale freestanding portraits of black-clad people whose gazes seem to follow visitors throughout the gallery.

“We No Longer See the Stars” is on view through March 7, 2020, at de Sarthe Gallery, 20/F, Global Trade Square, No. 21 Wong Chuk Hang Road, Hong Kong

 

William Buchina and Christina Nicodema, “Of Folly, Fortune, Glory, Ruin” at Hollis Taggart

Christina Nicodema, The Tower of Babel, Placenta (2019). Courtesy of Hollis Taggart.

Christina Nicodema, The Tower of Babel, Placenta (2019). Courtesy of Hollis Taggart.

This two-person show of works by William Buchina and Christina Nicodema melds together the bon viveur of a fête galante with the morbidity of a Dutch vanitas. Buchina renders what would be happy scenes of casual gatherings, but cast in sickly shades of blues and greens (think Renoir’s Luncheon of the Boating Party, but with everyone wearing gas masks). Even more distressingly pleasurable are Nicodema’s decadent still lifes, which heap together cakes, fruits, meats, flowers, fauna, and surgical equipment, all rendered in flamboyant tones. Seeming at once hyper-realistic and utterly impossible, the works are oddly mesmerizing. This wild sweetness will give you a toothache. 

“Of Folly, Fortune, Glory, Ruin” is on view through March 7, 2020, at Hollis Taggart, 521 West 26th Street, New York

 

Jessica Stoller, “Spread” at P.P.O.W.

Installation view "Spread," 2019. Courtesy of P.P.OW.

Installation view of “Spread,” 2019. Courtesy of P.P.OW.

Jessica Stoller’s exquisitely detailed new ceramics are tantalizingly bizarre, mixing flower petals and vines with disembodied legs and breasts, tangles of hair, wrinkled skin and other markers of the aging female body. These works allow beauty to bloom among something much more sinister and macabre.

“Spread” is on view through February 15, 2020, at P.P.O.W., 535 West 22nd Street

 

Ben Evans at Guy Hepner

Ben Evans, Green No. 1 (2020). Courtesy of Guy Hepner.

Ben Evans, Green No. 1 (2020). Courtesy of Guy Hepner.

Twentysomething Brooklynite and Instagram art star Ben Evans creates comic-influenced, Pop-style portraits of the behind-closed-doors habits of millennials and Gen Z’ers, seen devouring snacks or indulging their sexual fetishes. A unique series of Evans’s hand-embellished prints are currently on view at Guy Hepner gallery. “I see all of [my] paintings as film stills more than anything, truly,” the artist has said. “Making things that feel performative is fun for me because it allows me to be campy with the imagery, and existing in a campy space is where I’m most comfortable.”

Ben Evans is on view through February 29, 2020, at Guy Hepner, 520 W 27th Street, New York

 

Jean-Michel Atlan, “Jean-Michel Atlan et la Nouvelle École de Paris” at Setareh 

Installation view of "Jean-Michel Atlan et la Nouvelle École de Paris" (2019). Courtesy of Setareh.

Installation view of “Jean-Michel Atlan et la Nouvelle École de Paris” (2019). Courtesy of Setareh.

The late French artist Jean-Michel Atlan was a self-taught abstract painter who has become something of a niche favorite in France in the decades since his death in 1960. Nevertheless, he remains largely unknown within the greater art world. This exhibition, organized with Fondation Jean-Michel Atlan and the Musée de la Moderne de la Ville de Paris, is a fascinating reexamination of an artist who was highly regarded by Jean Dubuffet, showed alongside Picabia, and was friends with both the Surrealists and artists from the CoBrA movement. The show, which includes works from Atlan’s most pivotal periods, is an eye-opening look at an artist who was collected by the likes of Gertrude Stein, but who has fallen, almost inexplicably, into obscurity.

“Jean-Michel Atlan et la Nouvelle École de Paris” is on view through March 14, 2020, at Setareh, Königsallee 27 & 31, Düsseldorf, 40212

Masayoshi Nojo in “Under the Moonlight” at JD Malat 

Masayoshi Nojo, Mirage 45, 2019. Courtesy of JD Malat

Masayoshi Nojo, Mirage 45 (2019). Courtesy of JD Malat.

In his first solo show outside of his native Japan, artist Masayoshi Nojo presents a series of haunting and evocative landscapes that meld traditional aesthetics with contemporary visual language. The moody forests Nojo creates have an atmospheric shimmering quality that the artist achieves by applying silver foil to a marbled acrylic base. The effect keeps the eye wandering across the surface, drawing viewers into a state of reverie. 

“Under the Moonlight” is on view through February 15, 2020, at JD Malat, 30 Davies Street, Mayfair, London


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