CULTURE & ARTS
10/03/2014 09:21 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

10 Painters Who Are Changing Their Medium In The 21 Century

"FEW modern myths about art have been as persistent or as annoying as the so-called death of painting," Roberta Smith wrote back in 2010. "Too many people -- most obviously women -- are just beginning to make their mark with the medium and are becoming active in its public dialogue."

Critics have been pondering the mortality of painting for decades. But we don't even have to travel that far back in time to get a glimpse of the debate. "Does Painting Still Matter?" questioned Hyperallergic in April of 2013. "The Rectangular Canvas Is Dead," The New Republic declared a few months after. "The Show Is Over: Has Painting Really Had Its Day?" Jonathan Jones contemplated a mere couple of weeks later. In fact, Art F City has a handy guide to "The Painting Is Dead" Argument right here. Bottom line: nobody really knows. And even if they did, who are they to call the time of death on a centuries-old art-making method?

100

We tend to veer on the side of Smith, who makes a great point -- women and artists of color are just now getting a chance to impact a field long dominated by, well, white dudes. That's where "100 Painters of Tomorrow" lands as well. The massive art book, authored by Kurt Beers of Beers Contemporary, is rather hopeful on the future of painting. "Painting is enjoying a remarkable creative renaissance in the 21st century," a summary reads. To prove the point, Beers and publisher Thames & Hudson recruited famous art world figures -- Cecily Brown, Yuko Hasegawa, and Suzanne Hudson to name a few -- to identify the most exciting names in contemporary painting. From a pool of 4,300 international artists, they narrowed it down to 100, spanning abstract to figuration, oil to mixed media, canvas to installation.

We're showcasing our 10 favorite painters below. This is just a fraction of the entire list -- you can check our more on the publication here. In the meantime, let us know your thoughts on the future of painting in the comments.

  • 1 Michael Armitage (Kenya/England)
    Michael Armitage (b. 1984, Nairobi, Kenya. Lives and works in London, England), "The Uprising," 2012, oil on lubugo bark clot
    Michael Armitage (b. 1984, Nairobi, Kenya. Lives and works in London, England), "The Uprising," 2012, oil on lubugo bark cloth, 150 × 180 cm (59 × 71 in.) Image credit: © Michael Armitage. Courtesy the artist.
  • 2 Chokra (United Arab Emirates/United States)
    Chokra (b. 1988, United Arab Emirates. Lives and works in New York City, New York, USA) "Zawaj Al Khaleej (Gulf Marriage)," 2
    Chokra (b. 1988, United Arab Emirates. Lives and works in New York City, New York, USA) "Zawaj Al Khaleej (Gulf Marriage)," 2013, live performance, variable dimensions. Image credit: © Chokra. Courtesy the artist, Queer New York International Arts Festival & Abrons Art Center, New York. Photos Loren Wohl.
  • 3 Alexander Gutsche (Germany)
    Alexander Gutsche (b. 1970, Potsdam, Germany. Lives and works in Leipzig, Germany), "Monarchie und Alltag (Monarchy and Every
    Alexander Gutsche (b. 1970, Potsdam, Germany. Lives and works in Leipzig, Germany), "Monarchie und Alltag (Monarchy and Everyday Life)," 2012, acrylic on canvas, 240 × 160 cm (94 1/2 × 63 in.) Image credit: © Alexander Gutsche. Courtesy the artist and Galerie Emmanuel Post, Berlin. Photos Andreas Wünschirs, Leipzig.
  • 4 Ewa Juszkiewicz (Poland)
    Ewa Juszkiewicz (b. 1984, Gdansk, Poland. Lives and works in Warsaw, Poland), "Cardinal," 2012, oil on canvas, 145 × 90 cm (5
    Ewa Juszkiewicz (b. 1984, Gdansk, Poland. Lives and works in Warsaw, Poland), "Cardinal," 2012, oil on canvas, 145 × 90 cm (57 × 35 3/8 in.) Image credit: © Ewa Juszkiewicz. Courtesy the artist and local_30 gallery, Warsaw.
  • 5 Jenny Kemp (United States)
    Jenny Kemp (b. 1979, Sheboygan, Wisconsin, USA. Lives and works in Troy, New York, USA ), "Decodelia," 2013, gouache on paper
    Jenny Kemp (b. 1979, Sheboygan, Wisconsin, USA. Lives and works in Troy, New York, USA ), "Decodelia," 2013, gouache on paper, 76 × 51 cm (30 × 20 in.) Image credit: © Jenny Kemp. Courtesy the artist.
  • 6 Tala Madani (Iran/United States)
    Tala Madani (b. 1981 Tehran, Iran. Lives and works in LA, California, USA), "Blackout," 2012, oil on linen, 59.7 × 44.5 cm (2
    Tala Madani (b. 1981 Tehran, Iran. Lives and works in LA, California, USA), "Blackout," 2012, oil on linen, 59.7 × 44.5 cm (23 1/2 × 17 1/2 in.) Image credit: © Tala Madani. Courtesy the artist and Pilar Corrias, London.
  • 7 Ryan Mosley (England)
    Ryan Mosley (b. 1980, Chesterfield, Derbyshire, England. Lives and works in Sheffield, England), "Dance of the Nobleman," 201
    Ryan Mosley (b. 1980, Chesterfield, Derbyshire, England. Lives and works in Sheffield, England), "Dance of the Nobleman," 2011, 215 × 185 × 3.2 cm (84 5/8 × 72 7/8 × 1 1/4 in.) Image credit: © Ryan Mosley. Courtesy the artist, Alison Jacques Gallery, London and Galerie Eigen + Art, Berlin & Leipzig.
  • 8 Andrew Sendor (United States)
    Andrew Sendor (b. 1977, New York City, New York, USA. Lives and works in Brooklyn, New York, USA), Installation view: (left)
    Andrew Sendor (b. 1977, New York City, New York, USA. Lives and works in Brooklyn, New York, USA), Installation view: (left) "Performance with The Grand Master Cryptologist"; (right) "Onora Afua, Un-thinkable, 2033," single channel video projection, duration 52:55, 2012, oil on linen mounted to panel, 53.3 × 58.4 cm (21 × 23 in.) Image credit: © Andrew Sendor. Collection of Sheri and Paul Siegel, San Francisco, California. Courtesy Sperone Westwater.
  • 9 Lukasz Stoklosa (Poland)
    Lukasz Stoklosa (b. 1986, Kalwaria Zebrzydowska, Poland. Lives and works in Krakow, Poland) Sanssouci, 2012, oil on canvas, 4
    Lukasz Stoklosa (b. 1986, Kalwaria Zebrzydowska, Poland. Lives and works in Krakow, Poland) Sanssouci, 2012, oil on canvas, 40 × 50 cm (15 3/4 × 19 5/8 in.) Image credit: © Lukasz Stoklosa. Courtesy the artist and Zderzak Gallery, Krakow.
  • 10 Julia Wachtel (United States/England)
    Julia Wachtel (b. 1956, New York City, New York, USA. Lives and works in London, England) The Ideology of Love, 2013, oil on
    Julia Wachtel (b. 1956, New York City, New York, USA. Lives and works in London, England) The Ideology of Love, 2013, oil on canvas, 101.5 × 249 cm (40 × 98 in.) Image credit: © Julia Wachtel. Courtesy the artist and Vilma Gold, London.
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