The leading edge of artistic creativity is here in the Southland. With world-class museums, art expositions, art schools and university programs abounding, Los Angeles offers up-and-coming artists nothing but opportunity. Here are five of the best up-and coming artists in the Los Angeles area.
Nancy Egan sees her art as a “ministry to bring the Divine to the human world.” Following the traditions of “en plein air” painting, her impressionistic landscapes invoke one’s inner self to explore the divine. However, don’t assume her sense of spirituality is dogmatic – it’s general and universal. This latter 19th century painting style places the artist in the creativity of the natural environment. Her work is a broad and eclectic view of landscapes as visions that reflect the presence of nature. This second-generation artist now works from her studio in San Clemente, CA. From high school on, she has evolved from a scientific artist to a modern impressionist. Long accomplished in her work, her art reflects a growing creativity easily appreciated by the general art-loving public.
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Living in Los Angeles, Wu Tsang is a project artist who combines film and performance at venues from London to New York, and Toronto to Los Angeles. A recent example of installation art is his “Green Room.”This project contrasts public and private space in an interactive environment where museum visitors share functionally with the installation. Mirrors, lights, furniture and flooring collide as the subplot of a Honduran transgender woman’s escape to Los Angeles for a more open society streams from video screens. He is a 2004 graduate of the School of the Art Institute Chicago, and in 2010 he studied at UCLA’s Interdisciplinary Studio. Born in 1982, Wu Tsang challenges conventionality at every level of culture and society.
Juan Capistrán is a multimedia artist who is not shy about exposing political reality and its impact on marginalized communities. His art seeks to enlighten through the visual senses. Originally from Guadalajara, Mexico, he earned a degree from the Otis College of Art and Design in 1999, then in 2002 a Master of Fine Arts Degree from the University of California, Irvine. His works have been exhibited nationally, as well as in Mexico. In a recent art installation, “What We Want, What We Believe: Towards A Higher Fidelity,” the artist takes inspiration from Black radicalism and the parallels with Latino experience yielding visual anthems of resistance by repurposing the work of established artists.
“The Four People You Meet at Every Drug Deal” is Jibade-Khalil Huffman’s latest exhibition. Comprised of photos, sculptures, text and slide video, this master of storytelling through art uses the here-and-now as well as history to explore society and culture. Straying from conventional interpretations is one of his main components, or better said counterpoint. His art shows his experimental accomplishments in poetry. He complicates themes and meanings of more traditional art, but the thought-provoking results are made apparent. Both an artist and a writer, he seeks the paradoxes and absurdities that are not always apparent to the mind. In person, this up-and-coming artist exudes personality as he draws the familiar toward new vistas.
Marina Pinsky uses sculpture and photography to drive artistic images. Born in Moscow in 1986, and now working in Los Angeles, she is a graduate of the School of the Museum of Fine Arts Boston and has a Master of Fine Arts from UCLA. Her works, many times called “immersive,” take common photos that are then re-worked, often to abstraction. From timepieces to architecture, and from light to shadow, photography as art reaches new levels with her work. Sublime in meanings, and indirectly direct, the work of the young artist shows inherent talents that are sure to evolve in the years ahead.
Robert Cuthbert is a freelance writer covering all things Los Angeles. His work can be found on Examiner.com.