Instagram has many uses—stalking exes, beauty demos, and celebrity gossip. But consider it for something new: discovering incredible artists and their work. Next time you need a brain break in the middle of the day, explore these extremely talented New York City based artists, (and don’t forget to name drop them at your next dinner party)!
TriBeCa based artist Neil Hamamoto was born and raised in New York City and takes deep inspiration from his hometown. The prolific young artist is best known for his bright, compelling pieces, often leveraging wordplay and double entendres that transfix viewers. The self-taught artist has an impressive range and refuses to shy away from any medium, pushing boundaries with new applications and concepts. Most recently Hamamoto created and installed buzzworthy “paintings” in a string of his favorite bodegas, created by individually applying thousands of colorful price tag stickers to captivating results.
Hamamoto also owns and operates worthless studios, a shared artist studio and gallery in TriBeCa, started to foster and highlight young artists. He showed at Art Basel last year.
Mickalene Thomas is best known for her intricate work with materials such as rhinestones, acrylic, and enamel. Thomas beautifully explores themes of womanhood and beauty through an enchanting lens. Her inspirations are as interesting and varied as her own work. From 19th century Hudson River School to Edouard Manet, Henri Matisse and Romare Bearden and beyond. Though you can see hints of these more classical influences in her work, Thomas is so interesting because she infuses in a more contemporary view as well. This juxtaposition of her classical training in portraiture, landscape and still life with an infusion of pop art and culture is what makes this young artist so exciting. Thomas is currently showing work at the ICP Museum in an exhibit called Multiply, Identify, Her until September 2nd.
Though Hugo McCloud is Brooklyn based now, he was born in California. The exciting up and coming artist is impressively self-taught and has a rich background in industrial design. McCloud is inspired by the decay of the urban landscape which he reflects in his large-scale abstract paintings. He also takes inspiration from the concept of urban landscape and its decay. McCloud endeavors to find beauty in the neglected and deserted to stunning results.
Most recently McCloud presented an extremely successful new collection of pieces, Metal Paintings, in an exhibition with Sean Kelly Gallery.
Photography by: Courtesy Neil Hamamoto
Courtesy Hugo McCloud