Rising stars: the platforms championing young artists in 2020

We round up the initiatives supporting emerging art across the globe

art made by artist
Enorê, Untitled Self-Arrangement, 2020. © Enorê
(Image credit: Image Courtesy of Enorê)

As the effects of Covid-19 continue to shake the art world, many platforms and institutions are turning their focus, or continuing to nurture young talent in a critical time. From billboards splashed across cities, to biennales devoted to up-and-comers, we tracked down the global platforms championing the cultural voices of the future.

Tate Collective - billboards

billboard with grey background

Artists' responses to Urvashi, Staged Portrait, Gulmohar Park, Delhi by Sheba Chhachhi at Seven Sisters.

(Image credit: Tate and Jack Arts)

Following a Tate Collective open call, billboards across London have been filled with the work of young creatives. Members from the Tate Collective scheme, which is open to 16-25-year-olds, were invited to submit works in response to seven artworks in the Tate collection including Sheba Chhachhi Urvashi’s Staged Portrait, Gulmohar Park, Delhi, John Everett Millais’s Ophelia and Guerrilla Girls’ Dearest Art Collector. Thanks to space offered up by street advertising agency Jack Arts, the selected entries are on view until 23 August across the capital next to the work from Tate's collection that inspired them. Following 800 submissions, from poetry to illustration and even make-up looks, 48 works were selected, and each artist paid for their work. Maria Balshaw, director of Tate, said, ‘It is heartening to see immense creativity emerge at such a time of uncertainty for so many. Tate Collective members have engaged with Tate’s collection in ways that are truly inspiring. I hope people all over the city are delighted and surprised by the new work they find in their communities.’ tate.org.uk; @tatecollective

VII Moscow International Biennale for Young Art

Gallery Ark

art by alisa omelianceva

Alisa Omelianceva, Screen Settings, 2020. Site-specific installation for the interior facade of the Museum of Moscow.

(Image credit: Image courtesy of the artist)

Launching on 5 September, the Moscow Biennale for Young Art will kick off with artists creating site-specific works for the interior facades of the Museum of Moscow. Following an open call which resulted in 370 applicants from 64 countries, an expert panel whittled the selection down to four projects by artists Alisa Omelianceva, Igor Samolet, Roma Bogdanov and Alina Glazoun. As a result of Covid-19 restrictions, the original biennale, which was due to begin in July, was rescheduled with an altered format comprising staggered events. Later components of the programme will include a partnership with the Cosmoscow International Contemporary Art Fair and a portfolio review programme which aims to spotlight young artists from different regions of Russia. ‘At its core, the Biennale for Young Art is not a project or an exhibition but a process, a range of tools that help us create and maintain the living environment for emerging art.’ says Alexey Novoselov, commissioner of the VII Moscow International Biennale for Young Art. youngart.ru; @young_biennale

‘Embark III’ - Gallery Ark

art by Mausham Raj Manglla

Mausham Raj Manglla, Untitled 17, 2019. Watercolor and ink on paper.

(Image credit: Courtesy of the Artist, and Gallery Ark)

For the last three years, Gallery Ark, based in Vadodara, India has teamed up with the University of Baroda’s Faculty of Fine Arts for ‘Embark’, an exhibition supporting young artists one year after completing their master’s courses. This year, in the midst of Covid-19, conditions were a little different. Adamant that the show must go on, the gallery adopted for a pared-back approach, moving from a physical exhibition to the digital realm. For ‘Embark III’, eight artists were shortlisted including Mausham Raj Manglla who is exhibiting vivid watercolour portraits and Kavya Kumar Bhatt, whose intricate and surreal ink compositions use the stippling technique to create an air of visual deception. As part of its push to celebrate young art, Gallery Ark has forgone its commission, with artists receiving 100 per cent revenue from sales of their work. ‘As a part of the contemporary art ecosystem, we felt it was important to create a platform to support promising talent at this critical point in their careers,’ says gallery director, Nupur Dalmia. ‘This year, the logistics of selection and display were much trickier, but we are delighted to finally have been able to pull off the exhibition in its digital iteration.’ theark.in; @gallery_ark

The New Artist

Open Air

art using rocks

Anusheh Zia, Ravine, 2018. © Anusheh Zia

(Image credit: Anusheh Zia)

An online residency programme spotlighting recent graduates from across the UK, The New Artist was launched in early August in direct response to the pandemic’s effects on emerging artists at critical points in their careers. Founder Alexandra MacKay sought to carve a space for young artists at a time of turbulence and funding cuts across the arts. Every ten days, a new artist is given an online residency as part of a curated programme offering a diverse mix of artists and media. Forthcoming residencies include work by Isobel Hill, who captures everyday chance events and explores grief as a vehicle for nostalgia, interdisciplinary Brazillian artist, Enorê who uses image-capturing technologies as stand-ins for the naked eye, and Anusheh Zia, whose multi-disciplinary practice explores spirituality and Islamic faith. thenewartist.co.uk; @_the_new_artist

Hauser & Wirth - ‘In Real Life’ 

art with rocks and dolls

Louise Hall, 13 Dead, Nothing Said, 2020. Cyanotype African wax print fabric, Cyanotype screen-printed white cotton fabric, African wax print, fabric, cotton thread. © the artist.

(Image credit: Courtesy of the artist and Hauser & Wirth)

In response to a remarkable year for university graduates, with degree shows being cancelled or postponed across the globe, Hauser & Wirth launched a four-month international programme dedicated to the work of recent graduates. The inaugural exhibition of ‘In Real Life’ took place at Hauser & Wirth Somerset’s artist residency studios from 29 July - 2 August and featured work from ten BA(Hons) graduates from four regional universities including Bath Spa University and Arts University Bournemouth. Works included Melody Addo’s Chocolate Pudding and Louise Hall’s 13 Dead, Nothing Said. This Autumn, the exhibition will move to the gallery’s LA location, to spotlight work from Cal State’s MFA programme. The project forms part of the gallery’s #artforbetter initiative, which plans to expand on its educational partnerships and stage graduate exhibitions in further locations. hauserwirth.com; @hauserwirth

Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac & Jeune Création

exterior of art gallery

Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac's 2,000 sq m Paris Pantin space. Courtesy Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac.

(Image credit: Philippe Servent)

This September, Galerie Thaddaeus Ropac will offer up its sales infrastructure and its largest Paris space to stage an exhibition of 60 young regional artists and galleries. The artists were selected by the committee of Jeune Création, an emerging artists association founded in 1949. All sales revenue from the show will be given directly to the galleries and artists involved. Taking place inside the gallery’s sprawling 2,000 sq m exhibition space, Paris Pantin from 12-26 September, the show will also involve a diverse programme of photography, performance and video. ‘This is an unprecedented time for so many, but within our art world community it is particularly challenging for the next generation of artists and young galleries’, explained Thaddaeus Ropac. ‘By offering our largest gallery space and our full infrastructure to present work by 60 young artists we can support those in our community who are most in need.’ ropac.netjeunecreation.org

Tong Art Advisory - ‘Open Air’

Tong Art Advisory - ‘Open Air’

Nevine Mahmoud, Toy/Offender, 2020. Hand-blown glass, polyester resin.

(Image credit: Courtesy of Soft Opening)

On 22 August, a three-week group show will be hosted in a somewhat distinctive location, an open-air garage space in East Hampton. Aptly titled, ‘Open Air’, the exhibition, which will comprise mostly new work, is organised by Tong Art Advisory, a Beijing, New York and Paris-based firm representing mid-career and emerging artists with a key aim to support young talent through the pandemic. Works will be hung in a salon-style format, allowing for social distancing and ten per cent of sales will be donated to each artists’ charity of choice. Among the 15 international artists are Nevine Mahmoud, Oscar yi Hou, Caitlin Keough and American artist Alexandra Noel, who will donate her ten per cent to BEAM (Black Emotional and Mental Health Collective). tongartadvisory.com@tongartadvisory

Edoardo Monti & AucArt - ‘(Very) Young Italians’

painting on canvas

Samuel Rosi, Lux Omnia Vincit, spraypaint on canvas.

(Image credit: press)

For Italian collector turned curator Edoardo Monti, investing in and fostering emerging artistic talent is a priority. ‘Now more than ever, we have to focus on supporting the youngest, most fragile artists’, he told AucArt, where he is currently curating an online residency programme dedicated to young art. ‘As a proud Italian, yet a citizen of the world, it is my duty to dedicate my first online curatorial project to my compatriots.’ The group show, titled ‘(Very) Young Italians’ features work by 20 contemporary Italian artists working in a range of media, and will be online until April 2021. And Monti isn’t stopping there. In October, he is curating the Palazzo Monti degree show, which showcases works by 18 students from academies across Italy, followed by a show of artists (mostly under the age of 30) at Mana Contemporary in New Jersey. The Palazzo Monti degree show will be open until 24 October by appointment. palazzomonti.org; aucart.com

Harriet Lloyd-Smith was the Arts Editor of Wallpaper*, responsible for the art pages across digital and print, including profiles, exhibition reviews, and contemporary art collaborations. She started at Wallpaper* in 2017 and has written for leading contemporary art publications, auction houses and arts charities, and lectured on review writing and art journalism. When she’s not writing about art, she’s making her own.