Philadelphia-born artist Lisa Yuskavage has become known for her fantasized images of women in stages of undress, and not without controversy. Scantily clad, her subjects’ sexuality plays an important role in her art where men have largely been ignored. In her new series of paintings and pastels, currently on view at David Zwirner Gallery in New York alongside Yayoi Kusama (covered here), Yuskavage finally tackles the opposite sex. Called “Hippies,” her male and female cast is only loosely inspired by the free-spirited sub-culture. Yuskavage’s also possess an otherworldly feel with seductive and religious undertones.
Argentinian artist Francisco Diaz (aka Pastel) uses a distinct visual language in his murals. He fills his walls with patterns based on the local flora of the area he’s painting in — an effective way to connect with the communities he encounters in his travels. His botanical references often address history, geography, society, and politics. Along with these nature-based elements, Pastel often paints ancient, Stone Age tools to glorify humanity’s strength without referencing a specific culture. His distinct yet decorative style lends itself well to collaborations with other street artists, such as Pixel Pancho and Agostino Iacurci, who both worked with Pastel recently.
Barnaby Whitfield’s portraits are rendered with acidic shades of chalk pastel as if illuminated by a strange, disorienting light source. His characters’ pallid skin glows with an almost fluorescent shade of white and the wrinkles, bruises, and redness on their faces is especially accentuated. Their vulnerability manifests in the form of physical scars.
Working from her Brooklyn, NY studio, artist Zaria Forman creates pastel landscapes inspired by the beauty and vastness of the sky and the sea. Hers is an art created for facilitating a deeper understanding of a world in crisis. She is fascinated by the constantly-changing nature of water and inspired by the challenges of her medium.