World's Greatest Postmodernist Artists
Top 100 Exponents of Installation/Video Art, Performance, Conceptualism and other Visual Arts.

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Graffiti by Banksy (May-Aug 2008)
on the nature of reality, or the issue
of art imitating reality. The work
shows a cleaning worker erasing
a mural. Note also the pictures
of animals painted to resemble
those in prehistoric cave paintings.

PART THREE: Top 100 Postmodernist Artists

Contents

Introduction
A-Z of the Top 100 Postmodernist Artists
Museums of Postmodernist Art

Further Resources

• For artworks ahead of their time, see: Avant-Garde Art.
• For movements, see: Contemporary Art Movements.
• For a general guide to recent works, see: Contemporary Art (from 1970).
• For the leading practitioners, see: Top Contemporary Artists.



Large Blue Anthropometry (ANT 105)
(1960) Guggenheim Museum, New York
One of Yves Klein's famous canvases
which required nude figures to be
covered in paint before sprawling
across a lifesize canvas.

Introduction to Postmodernism

Postmodernist art represents a completely new chapter in the history of art. It is NOT a continuation of, or a contemporary version of, traditional painting or sculpture - it's different, new, avant-garde, challenging and (as far as possible) instant! It has its own NEW set of values or aesthetics. That's why not all contemporary artists are postmodernist, because some are still quite traditionalist in both their media and their values.

So what makes a postmodernist artist?

First, he (or she) is likely to be working in one of the contemporary visual arts, such as: installation, assemblage, conceptual art, video, animation, film, glass-making, performance, happenings, graffiti, body art, land art, and so on. Alternatively, if he works in one of the more traditional media, like painting, sculpture, printmaking, mosaics, tapestry or ceramics, he is likely to work with unconventional materials, or at least according to a new set of aesthetics.

Second, postmodernist artists tend to work with new image-based technologies, including television, video, LEDs, i-phones, screenprinting, computers, and the Internet. They source, manipulate and process imagery, rather than simply create it from scratch. Postmodernism isn't about painting the Mona Lisa, rather it's about sourcing a computer graphic of the Mona Lisa and superimposing it on a slice of toast while singing a Scottish lament.

Third, postmodernist art believes in a relatively dumbed-down approach, in order to ensure democratic 'access' to art. So postmodernism prefers artists to use instantly recognizable objects whenever possible: pickled sheep or sharks are good options, so are crowds of of nude bodies, maggots, skulls, heaps of dead flies, islands wrapped in pink polypropylene fabric and so on.

If some of this doesn't sound much like "art", don't blame the poor old postmodernist artist. Instead, blame the museum curators, blame the art teachers, blame Joe Public for preferring populist entertainment to traditional craftsmanship. After all, like most things in life, we get the sort of art we deserve.

 

 

Top 100 Postmodernist Artists

The following list was compiled by our Editor, Neil Collins LLB MA, who also compiled our Best Artists of All Time and Famous Paintings Analyzed.

A
Abramovic, Marina (b.1946)
Multicultural but provocative Serbian performance artist whose body art can involve physical risk to herself. Had partnership with the West German performance artist Uwe Laysiepen (Ulay). Won the Golden Lion at the Venice Biennale.
Abts, Tomma (b.1967)
Specializes in small-scale abstract paintings in acrylics and oils. First woman painter to win the Turner Prize (2006).
Acconci, Vito Hannibal (b.1940)
Italian-American artist - a leading influence in the development of the body art movement - who employs video and performance works to explore aspects of control, consent and endurance.
Andre, Carl (b.1935)
American minimalist sculptor best-known for his geometric floor arrangements of identical objects like bricks or blocks.
Anselmo, Giovanni (b.1934)
Italian painter, now conceptual artist, who uses organic materials to explore themes of time, as well as natural forces like energy and gravity.
Araki, Nobuyoshi (b.1940)
Controversial Japanese postmodernist photographer specializing in erotic imagery involving female nudes, in order to explore issues of death and other social taboos.
Arbus, Diane (1923-71)
Controversial pioneer of social portrait photography, whose camera art focused on physical freaks and other minority groups.
Arman (1928-2005) (Armand Pierre Fernandez)
Contemporary assemblage artist famous for his accumulations of everyday objects, notably his sculptures made from car parts. His Poubelles exemplify the genre of junk art.
Arnold, Bryant (b.1970)
Contemporary caricaturist best known for his cartoon Steve Jobs Head of Apple Quits (2011).

B
Bailey, David (b.1938)
Best-known for his innovative 1960s portraiture and fashion shots.
Banksy (b.1974)
Famous British graffiti artist noted for his clandestine stencil images spray-painted in public places. His alleged identity is that of Robert/Robin Banks.
Barney, Matthew (b.1967)
Controversial filmmaker, performance and installation artist, best known for his big-budget 35mm semi-surreal films like the off-beat Cremaster 1-5 (1995-2002).
Baselitz, Georg (b.1938)
German painter, printmaker, sculptor and draftsman (born Hans-Georg Kern), known for his Neo-expressionism, notably his upside-down paintings and wood sculptures.
Basquiat, Jean-Michel (1960-88)
Controversial New York ex-Graffiti artist who went mainstream then died of a drug overdose.
Becher, Bernd/Hilla (1931-2007)
German husband and wife team of lens-based artists renowned for their b/w architectural photographs.
Beuys, Joseph (1921-86)
Controversial German sculptor, performance and installation artist, acclaimed by contemporary art museums during the 1980s for the intellectualism of his works. If the stories of his wartime rescue - involving the recuperative qualities of felt and fat - are untrue, his works automatically lose authenticity.
Blake, Peter (b.1932)
Painter, printmaker, assemblage artist and designer; pioneer of British Pop art; designed album cover for The Beatles' LP Sgt Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band (1967).
Boltanski, Christian (b.1944)
Jewish-French sculptor, painter, installation artist and film-maker, whose multi-media works often address issues concerning the Holocaust as well as Nazi rule in France.
Botero, Fernando (b.1932)
Internationally renowned Columbian painter/sculptor who is famous for his paintings (and sculptures) of a wide variety of bizarre, kitsch-style, heavily overweight figures, such as Dancers at the Bar (2001).
Cecily Brown (b.1969)
Daughter of the art critic David Sylvester, best known for her controversial "bunny paintings". Also noted for her gestural figuration in works like 1000 Thread Count (2004).
Brown, Glenn (b.1966)
Sculptor and De Kooning-style expressionist painter, associated with appropriation art, itself linked to Neo-Dada and Pop.
Burden, Chris (b.1946)
Performance and installation artist; early practitioner of high-risk body art, after which he took up sculpture and installations. The latter can be technologically innovative as well as jaw-dropping.
Buren, Daniel (b.1938)
French conceptual artist and site-specific installation artist, who specializes in using stripes to redefine space.
Burrows, Larry (1926-1971)
Celebrated photojournalist, noted for his 60s and 70s war photography.
Burtynsky, Edward (b.1955)
Canadian landscape photographer, famous for "manufactured landscapes", mostly of industrial spaces.

C
Campus, Peter (b.1937)
Important video artist of the 1970s, and an influential innovator in studio camera work and video technology. His works features closed-circuit installations, photography and computer-generated imagery.
Cesar (1921-98)
French assemblage artist and sculptor, best known for his compressions.
Chapman, Jak and Dinos (b.1966 and 1962)
Conceptual artists, members of YBA Britart movement; former assistants to Gilbert & George. Use well-crafted mixed-media to address themes of violence, exploitation and commercialism.
Chicago, Judy (b.1939)
Feminist artist (born Judy Cohen), best known for her defining 1970s works of feminist art such as The Dinner Party (1979) and Through the Flower (1973).
Chihuly, Dale (b.1941)
American glass blowing artist specializing in abstract glass works; best known for his multipart glass sculptures such as Towers and Chandeliers. Also creates glasswork installations. Singlehandedly responsible for hand glass-making becoming a fine art.
Christo & Jeanne-Claude (Javacheff)
Christo (b.1935) and Jeanne-Claude Denat de Guillebon (1935-2009) were a famous husband and wife team associated with large-scale postmodernist art projects ("interventions") which included the mummification of the Pont Neuf in Paris and the envelopment of several Florida offshore islands in pink nylon.
Close, Chuck (b.1940)
Enormously influential leader of the American photorealism movement, best known for his monumental self-portraits.
Cragg, Tony (b.1949)
Highly respected British postmodernist sculptor who works in a variety of media - clay, bronze, stone, metal, plastic as well as junk art materials. His sculptures and assemblages are in several prestigious public collections. Winner of the Turner Prize in 1988.
Craig-Martin, Michael (b.1941)
Painter and installation artist, senior tutor at Goldsmiths College in London where he exerted a significant influence over members of the Young British Artists group (like Damien Hirst, Tracey Emin, Mat Collishaw and Gary Hume) during the 1980s and 90s. Associated with detached conceptualism and the use of 'found' objects in the manner of Marcel Duchamp's 'ready-mades'.
Creed, Martin (b.1968)
Installation artist (light bulb flickering on/off), Turner Prize winner (2001).
Crewdson, Gregory (b.1962)
American cameraman best-known for staged photos of small-town America. Occupies the intersection between fantasy and reality.

 

D
Davey, Grenville (b.1961)
British sculptor in the style of Minimalism-meets-Pop, member of Young British Artists movement; won Turner Prize in 1992; now Professor of Sculpture at the University of East London.
Deacon, Richard (b.1949)
Welsh sculptor, noted for large-scale public sculptures in plywood, stainless steel, vinyl, leather, as well as wood, clay, metal and plastics; organic shapes. Won Turner Prize in 1987.
De Andrea, John (b.1941)
American hyperrealist sculptor specializing in female nudes.
Deller, Jeremy (b.1966)
Postmodernist artist awarded the Turner Prize winner in 2004 for his documentary-style film Memory Bucket (2003). Also involved in postal art, as well as collections of folk and vernacular art such as The Uses of Literacy: "Manic Street Preachers" (1999).
Demarchelier, Patrick (b.1943)
French fashion photographer renowned for his portraits of Princess Diana.
Dijkstra, Rineke (b.1959)
Innovative portrait photographer from the Netherlands.

E
Eggleston, William (b.1939)
American camera artist and pioneer of colour photography.
Emin, Tracey (b.1963)
Controversial but popular postmodernist artist; member of the 1980s Young British Artists group; noted for shocking contemporary works of so-called art, incorporating suggestive imagery and "found objects", such as My Bed (1999).
Estes, Richard (b.1932)
American superrealist painter of urban street scenes, executed in photographic detail.

F
Fang Lijun (b.1963)
One of the leaders of the Cynical Realism movement which followed the Tiananmen Square crackdown. Noted for his paintings of confused "bald headed young men", symbolizing the uncertainties of Chinese artists.
Faucon, Bernard (b.1950)
French photographer specializing in "staged photography", also noted for his use of children and mannequins.
Feuerman, Carole (b.1945)
American photorealist sculptor noted in particular for her figures of female swimmers.
Forg, Gunther (b.1952)
German sculptor and lens-based artist noted for his architectural photography.
Friedlander, Lee (b.1934)
Talented all-round American photographer proficient in portraiture, nudes, nature photos, urban landscapes and street photography.
Fritsch, Katharina (b.1956)
German sculptor who often used life-size figures, minus plinth, to permit easier 'access' by the observer. Important works include Yellow Madonna (1987) and Rat-King (1993).
Fukase, Masahisa (b.1934)
Celebrated cameraman known for his outstanding bird photography.

G
Gair, Joanne (b.1958)
Illusionist body painter from New Zealand, best known for "Demi-Moore's Birthday Suit", which appeared on the front cover of Vanity Fair, August 1992.
Garcia-Alix, Alberto (b.1956)
Spanish camera artist best-known for his nude portraits.
Gehry, Frank O. (b.1929)
Leading postmodernist designer, champion of Deconstructivism in California.
Gilbert & George (b.1943; b.1942)
Pair of male postmodernist conceptual artists with worldwide following, involved in performance art, photomontage, video and mixed media. Best remembered for The Singing Sculpture (1970), a 'living sculpture' performance in which they danced to a recording of the 1931 musical hall song 'Underneath the Arches'. Turner Prize winners in 1986.
Goldin, Nan (b.1953)
Contemporary American camera artist, noted for her photos of marginalized groups and feminist issues.
Goldsworthy, Andy (b.1956)
British sculptor and land artist who relies on 'found' objects such as shrubs, twigs, leaves, icicles, snow, sand and stones. Often explores issues of growth and decay.
Gordon, Douglas (b.1966)
Video and installation artist; also uses photography and Hollywood cinematic themes; Turner Prize winner 1996.
Gormley, Antony (b.1950)
British sculptor, Turner Prize winner (1994), after using his own body as a cast for lead sculptures, he is now best known for his colossal public figure known as Angel of the North. Also noted for his innovative installation Field (1991).
Graham, Paul (b.1956)
One of the best known British postmodernist photographic artists, who pioneered a new colour aesthetic.
Gursky, Andreas (b.1955)
One of postmodernism's greatest photographers, his photograph entitled "Rhein II" (1999), sold at Christie's New York in November 2011 for a whopping $4,338,500.

H
Haake, Hans (b.1936)
Controversial German artist, active in the USA, who uses installations and other genres as a form of political art. Possesses great visual rhetoric, sense of history which serves him well in his institutional critique approach. Has exhibited in many of the most prestigious museums of contemporary art.
Haring, Keith (1958-90)
US graffiti artist, friends with Jean-Michel Basquiat and Kenny Scarf, noted for his cartoon figures and lively colours, as in his Crack is Wack mural painting. Began with chalks before gravitating to acrylics, marker ink and Day-Glo paint.
Hesse, Eva (1936-70)
German-born American sculptor, an exponent of 'Eccentric Abstraction' and Post-minimalism. Also associated with Process Art, a genre which used unstable materials that deteriorated or decayed without the artist having any control.
Hirst, Damien (b.1965)
Painter, sculptor, installation artist, patronized by Charles Saatchi (b.1943); became world's most successful living artist. Won Turner Prize in 1995. Key works include: The Physical Impossibility of Death in the Mind of Someone Living (1991); Pharmacy (1992); Mother and Child Divided (1993); Away From the Flock (1994); and For the Love of God (2007).
Hockney, David (b.1937)
English artist and draughtsman, pioneered postmodernist Californian portraiture; also produced pop-art style swimming-pool paintings.
Hofer, Candida (b.1944)
Cologne photographer who focuses on photos of public interiors.
Holzer, Jenny (b.1950)
One of the foremost exponents of Feminist art, she uses text as a visual art form along with colourful LED signs.
Horn, Rebecca (b.1944)
German performance/installation artist, filmmaker and sculptor. Creates highly original installations with surprising, unpredictable machines. Entertaining and thought-provoking, occasionally alarming art.
Hotere, Ralph (b.1931)
New Zealand painter, sculptor and installation artist, noted for use of black colour and materials like corrugated iron.
Hume, Gary (b.1962)
Painter and sculptor, member of Young British Artists group; best known for his paintings of popular figures/images in highly reflective gloss paint.
Hutte, Axel (b.1951)
German cameraman noted for his edgy architectural and landscape photography.

I-J
Ionesco, Irina (b.1935)
Highly controversial photographer best-known for his female nudes and erotic photography.
Iturbide, Graciela (b.1942)
Celebrated Mexican contemporary female photographer.
Johns, Jasper (b.1930)
One of the most successful modern artists during the second half of the 20th century, he was an early Pop-art painter, sculptor and printmaker who pioneered the use of mundane objects, like flags, maps, beer cans in fine art.
Jonas, Joan (b.1936)
Video, installation and performance artist, who created a number of groundbreaking performance videos. In 2005 she became Professor of Visual Arts at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Judd, Donald (1928-94)
American avant-garde abstract sculptor, highly influential exponent of minimalism, who used industrial materials like plexiglass, sheet metal, plywood. Commemorated by his museum in Marfa, Texas.

K
Kabakov, Ilya (b.1933)
Ukrainian installation artist now active in New York, specializing in 'immersive' installations reflecting aspects of communist rule.
Kander, Nadav (b.1961)
Renowned camera artist noted for his advertising photography as well as his landscape shots taken along the Yangtze river in China.
Kapoor, Anish (b.1954)
Indian-born sculptor, British Turner Prize winner (1991), noted for his monumental sculptures and site-specific installations.
Kaprow, Allan (1927-2006)
American assemblage artist who turned to performance art. He is best known for pioneering "Happenings" and "Environments", an early type of installation.
Katz, Benjamin (b.1939)
One of the foremost camera artists in West Germany since the 1970s.
Kawara, On (b.1932)
Japanese postmodernist painter and conceptual artist best known for minimalist dated paintings which explore methods of communication.
Kiefer, Anselm (b.1945)
Highly respected German painter, sculptor and lens-based artist whose works tackle historical taboos involving issues such as Nazi rule and German responsibility for the Holocaust.
Kippenberger, Martin (b.1953)
Painter, printmaker, sculptor, installation artist and self-publicist occupied with absurdist projects ("art is what you can get away with"). Member of Junge Wild, a group of unconventional German artists concerned with the aftermath of the collapse of the Berlin Wall. Also founded the Lord Jim Lodge group.
Klein, Yves (1928-62)
French painter, first authentic postmodernist conceptual and performance artist; patented his own colour pigment - International Klein Blue (IKB). See also: Yves Klein's Postmodernist art (1956-62).
Knight, Nick (b.1958)
One of the most influential young lens-based artists of the 1990s, specializing in fashion and portrait photography.
Koons, Jeff (b.1955)
Neo-Pop sculptor who uses mass-produced consumerist objects as works of art. These kitsch-like works have been followed by large-scale artworks including the highly innovative Puppy (1992) made from plants and shrubs.
Kounellis, Jannis (b.1936)
Greek installation artist, member of Arte Povera movement, who creates installations out of unorthodox materials including live animals, like horses and parrots, and gas flames.
Krims, Les (b.1942)
American camera artist noted for her innovative staged feminist photography.
Kruger, Barbara (b.1945)
Noted for her conceptual word art and slogans like "I shop therefore I am".
Kusama, Yayoi (b.1929)
Japanese installation and performance artist, best remembered for her Happenings, often involving nudity, and her phallic imagery decorated with polka dots.

 

L
LaChapelle, David (b.1963)
American camera artist famous for his fashion photography characterized by outrageously garish images.
Lanting, Frans (b.1951)
Renowned animal and landscape photographer from the Netherlands.
Leckey, Mark (b.1964)
Contemporary sculptor, film/sound/performance artist, winner of Turner Prize (2008).
Leibovitz, Annie (b.1949)
Contemporary portrait photographer noted for her portraits of popular celebrities like Meryl Street, John Lennon and Yoko Ono, and a pregnant nude Demi Moore.
LeWitt, Sol (1928-2007)
Conceptual artist, printmaker, draftsman and sculptor, famous for his minimalist, geometric works. Also produced 1,200 wall drawings. Wrote Paragraphs on Conceptual Art (1967).
Lichtenstein, Roy (1923-1997)
Enduringly creative Pop artist, whose postmodernist works include his famous Bedroom at Arles (1992).
Lik, Peter (b.1976)
Renowned Australian landscape and nature photographer.
Lindbergh, Peter (b.1944)
Innovative Polish lens-based artist specializing in fashion photography.
Long, Richard (b.1945)
British land artist, involved also in conceptual art, sculpture and photography; won the Turner Prize in 1989.
Lucas, Sarah (b.1962)
Installation artist, sculptor, graduate of Goldsmiths College, participant in the Freeze (1988) Exhibition; noted for her confrontational treatment of controversial issues.

M
Mapplethorpe, Robert (1946-89)
Highly controversial American photographer known for his provocative male nudes and floral still-lifes. But see: Is Photography art?
McCullin, Don (b.1935)
British photojournalist who made his reputation during the Vietnam War. Later turned to landscape photography.
McCurry, Steve (b.1950)
American cameraman best-known for his photographs of Afghanistan.
McQueen, Steve (b.1969)
Video artist, Turner Prize winner in 1999.
Miyajima, Tatsuo (b.1957)
Japanese postmodernist sculptor and installation artist noted for his installations during the late 1980s of digital counters in the form of light-emitting diodes (LEDs). Although indebted to 1970s Serial art of the 1970s and to the use of numerical systems by other artists, Miyajima claims that his work addresses humanist ideas within Buddhist philosophy.
Moon, Sarah (b.1941)
French fashion and portrait photographer, noted for style of romantic femininity.
Morris, Robert (b.1931)
Highly influential contemporary artist and theorist who experimented with performance art, environmental art, minimalism and postmodernist sculpture.
Muniz, Vik (b.1961)
Painter, photographer, noted for his reconstructions of preexisting images. Uses highly unconventional materials such as ketchup, chocolate, dust, soil, sequins and trash. Noted for his reproduction of Warhol's double image of the Mona Lisa in peanut butter and jello.

N
Nachtwey, James (b.1948)
Postmodernist camera artist noted for his direct images of the Iraqi war, the 2004 tsunami and the 9/11 attack on the World Trade Center.
Nauman, Bruce (b.1941)
Sculptor, photographer, performance and multi-media artist famous for his avant-garde neon sculpture, and video installations.
Newton, Helmut (1920-2004)
Contemporary fashion photographer specializing in erotic shots, such as the matching pair "Sie Kommen" - "They Are Coming" (1981).

O
Ofili, Chris (b.1968)
Painter, collage artist; controversial member of Young British Artists group, following his Holy Virgin Mary (1996) painting of a Black African Madonna garnished with elephant dung. nother notable work is No Woman, No Cry (1998). Turner Prize winner in 1998.
Ohara, Ken (b.1942)
Japanese photographer noted for his new style b/w portraits.
Oiticica, Helio (1937-80)
Brazilian experimental painter, sculptor and performance artist noted for his exploration of colour. Founder of Grupo Neoconcreto and Tropicalismo movements.
Oldenburg, Claes (b.1929)
Foremost Pop art sculptor, noted for his wide range of giant vinyl and foam-rubber 'sculptures' of everyday objects, such as lipsticks, apple cores, cigarette butts, hamburgers.
Julian Opie (b.1958)
Contemporary British painter and graphic artist, best known for works like Woman Taking off Man's Shirt in two Written Stages (2003).
Ortega, Damian (b.1967)
Postmodernist sculptor, installation and performance artist, whose works are inspired by mundane objects and explore the objects' cultural identity and connotations. See his impressive sculptures such as Cosmic Thing (2002, deconstructed Volkswagen Beetle car, Galeria Kurimanzutto, Mexico City) and Controller of the Universe (2007, Found tools and wire, Private Collection).

P-Q
Paik, Nam June (1932-2006)
South Korean composer and video installation artist; a pioneer of musical video art since 1965, and the first to use multiple monitors. Also combined video and music with performance.
Parr, Martin (b.1952)
Postmodernist art photographer producing portraits and still lifes, as well as advertising and fashion photography.
Penk, AR (Ralf Winckler) (b.1939)
Dresden painter and printmaker (woodcuts), noted for his stylized spindly figures and fragmented writing. His paintings have a rather obscure political meaning.
Penone, Giuseppe (b.1947)
Postmodernist sculptor, conceptual and land artist associated with the Arte Povera movement.
Perry, Grayson (b.1960)
Contemporary potter and cross-dresser, winner of Turner Prize in 2003. Noted for his opulent, shimmering ceramic art.
Philipsz, Susan (b.1965)
Sound installationist; winner of Turner Prize 2010 for a sound installation in which she sings three versions of a Scottish lament. She lives and works in Berlin.
Polke, Sigmar (b.1941)
Experimental painter, collage artist and photographer noted for his Pop-art style based on advertising imagery overlaid with contemporary print media. Also noted for haunting still-life photography.
Prince, Richard (b.1949)
American painter and lens-based artist.

R
Reinhardt, Ad (1913-67)
Minimalist Artist now highly regarded for his avant garde "black paintings".
Richter, Gerhard (b.1932)
Innovative German painter, printmaker, stained glass designer, noted for his blurry 'photo-paintings'.
Riley, Bridget (b.1931)
Innovative painter, leader British Op-Art, part of the wider kinetic art movement.
Ruscha, Ed (b.1937)
Pop art painter also known for his photos of mundane features of American life in the 1960s.

S
Salgado, Sebastiao (b.1944)
Controversial Brazilian cameraman famous for his b/w photos of the Third World.
Saville, Jenny (b.1970)
Painter and member of Young British Artists movement, she specializes in large-scale canvases featuring fleshy, obese nudes, often using herself as a model. Charles Saatchi was an important patron.
Schneemann, Carolee (b.1939)
American Feminist artist who employs performance art, installations, paintings and video to represent her artistic values about the body, cultural taboos and gender politics.
Scully, Sean (b.1945)
Irish-American artist, one of the most successful abstract painters of his generation, noted for his large elemental rectangular patterns. Please see also: Irish Contemporary Artists (21st century).
Seidner, David (1957-99)
Important postmodernist exponent of fashion and portrait photography.
Serra, Richard (b.1939)
Highly regarded American minimalist scuptor, noted for his process art and public Cor-Ten steel sculptures.
Sherman, Cindy (b.1954)
American photographer and film-maker, uses conceptual self portraits. During the 1990s she produced one notable series of fine art photography based on characters from Old Master paintings, and another on mutilated bodies.
Skoglund, Sandy (b.1946)
American camera artist renowned for her staged surrealist photography.
Slyussarev, Alexander (b.1944)
Leading exponent of Soviet art photography.
Smithson, Robert (1938-73)
Immensely influential installation artist and champion of land art, notably earthworks. His postmodernist artworks (drawings, photos, sculptures) continue to be exhibited worldwide.
Starling, Simon (b.1967)
British installation artist, won Turner Prize winner in 2005. Involved in a form of process art, his key works include: Home-made Eames (2002, Guggenheim Museum, New York), and Shedboatshed (Mobile Architecture No 2) (2005).
Stella, Frank (b.1936)
Painter, printmaker, writer, sculptor; pioneer of experimental minimalism; leading member of Post-Painterly Abstraction movement involved in 'pinstripe canvases' and 'shaped-canvas' styles.

 

T
Tapies, Antoni (b.1923)
Barcelona-born abstract painter, etcher and lithographer, best known for his mixed-media paintings.
Taylor-Wood, Sam
(b.1967)
Avant-garde filmmaker, video artist and photographer, member of Young British Artists movement, whose works explore the difference between perceived appearance and actual being. Married the art dealer Jay Jopling, owner of White Cube gallery, after the release of her video installation Killing Time (1994).
Testino, Mario (b.1954)
Peruvian fashion photographer best-known for his Vanity Fair photoshoot of Princess Diana.
Tillmans, Wolfgang (b.1968)
Lens-based artist, won the Turner Prize 2000 for his fine art photography. But see: Is Photography Art?
Tinguely, Jean (1925-1991)
Swiss experimental sculptor, noted for his self-destructive kinetic art.
Turrell, James (b.1943)
Californian installation artist who uses light-based installations to explore the physiology and phenomenology of perception.
Twombly, Cy (1928-2011)
Best known for his blend of drawing and painting, combining elements of calligraphy and graffiti.
Tyson, Keith (b.1969)
British installation artist, Turner Prize winner (2002).

U-Z
Ulay (Frank Uwe Laysiepen) (b.1943)
German practitioner of performance body art.
Vettriano, Jack (b.1951)
Popular contemporary subject-painter noted for The Singing Butler (1992).
Viola, Bill (b.1951)
One of the world's top video artists; works focus on birth, death, love, and emotion. Awarded a major 25-year retrospective by the Whitney Museum of American Art (1997); elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2000.
Wall, Jeff (b.1946)
One of the top lens-based artists of the postmodernist era, Wall specializes in "staged photography".
Wallinger, Mark (b.1959)
Thought-provoking video and installation artist, as well as painter and sculptor. Awarded Turner Prize in 2007 for his installation State Britain.
Warhol, Andy (1928-87)
One of the leading figures of 20th century avant-garde postmodernist art. Made his reputation in Pop art with consumerist imagery (Campbells soup tins), morbid scenes (Death Row, car accidents) and iconic portraits of film stars, musicians and political figures. Also an influential pioneer of video, film and conceptual art. For more, see Andy Warhol's Pop Art of the sixties and seventies.
Watson, Albert (b.1942)
Versatile Scottish fashion photographer also noted for his portraiture, nudes and landscape photography.
Wearing, Gillian (b.1963)
Documentary-style photography and video artist. Turner Prize winner 1997.
Webb, Boyd (b.1947)
Highly innovative New Zealand installation artist and conceptual photographer.
Whiteread, Rachel (b.1963)
Sculptor and Turner Prize winner (1993) who specializes in forms made by casting the negative spaces of domestic objects. Key works include Closet (1988) and House (1993).
Wilson, Richard (b.1953)
British postmodernist installation artist, best known for his absolutely extraordinary work 20:50, a room filled with oil, now a set-piece exhibit in the Saatchi Gallery.
Winogrand, Garry (1928-84)
Greatest American exponent of street photography, known for his radical, visual language.
Witkin, Isaac (b.1936)
South African artist one of the 'New Generation' abstract sculptors, noted for his monochrome abstract works in fibreglass, wood, welded steel and bronze.
Wodiczko, Krzysztof (b.1943)
Polish artist who specializes in large-scale outdoor slide projections on buildings and monuments to explore issues of democracy and human rights.
Wojnarowicz, David (1954-92)
AIDS activist, street painter and innovative collage artist.
Wool, Christopher (b.1955)
American painter best known for his contemporary "text paintings", such as Apocalypse Now (1988).
Yue Minjun (b.1962)
Chinese Cynical Realist painter well-known for his "smiling" self-portraits, like those in his "Hat" series.
Zhang Xiaogang (b.1958)
Member of Chinese Cynical Realism movement noted for his "Bloodlines" series of photographic-style portraits.
Zorio, Gilberto (b.1944)
Arte Povera sculptor and installation artist who often works with materials whose physical qualities change with the (eg. heat, humidity) of their immediate environment.

Art Appreciation
For a guide, see: Art Evaluation. To learn about the contemporary plastic arts, see: How to Appreciate Modern Sculpture.

Museums of Postmodernist Art

Important public collections and exhibitions of avant-garde painting and other contemporary artworks can be seen in the following museums and galleries, listed by town/city. For details, see: Best Galleries of Contemporary Art. For biennales and other festivals, see: Best Contemporary Art Festivals.

Stedelijk Museum (Amsterdam)
• Center for Art and Visual Culture, University of Maryland (Baltimore)
• Museum of Contemporary Art (Barcelona)
Kunstmuseum (Basel)
Guggenheim (Berlin)
• Neue Nationalgalerie (Berlin)
Guggenheim (Bilbao)
• Institute of Contemporary Art (Boston)
• Chicago Cultural Center (Chicago)
• Museum of Contemporary Art (Chicago)
Irish Museum of Modern Art (Dublin)
• Museum of Modern Art (Fort Worth)
• Museum fur Moderne Kunst (Frankfurt am Main)
• Kunsthalle (Hamburg)
• Cullen Sculpture Garden, Museum of Fine Arts (Houston)
• Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art (Kansas City)
• Institute of Contemporary Arts (London)
Saatchi Gallery (London)
• Tate Modern (London)
• Museum of Contemporary Art (Los Angeles)
• Malmo Art Museum (Malmo)
• Ian Potter Museum of Art (Melbourne)
• Walker Museum (Minneapolis)
• Pinakothek der Moderne (Munich)
• Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum (New York)
Guggenheim Museum (New York)
• Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York)
Museum of Modern Art (New York)
• New Museum of Contemporary Art (New York City)
Whitney Museum of American Art (New York)
• Neues Museum (Nuremberg)
• Museum of Modern Art (Passau)
Pompidou Centre: French National Museum of Contemporary Art (Paris)
• Andy Warhol Museum (Pittsburgh)
• Carnegie Museum of Art (Pittsburgh)
• Aldrich Museum of Contemporary Art (Ridgefield)
• Museo d'Arte Contemporanea (Rivoli)
• Boijmans Van Beuningen Museum (Rotterdam)
• San Francisco Museum of Modern Art
• Moderna Musset (Stockholm)
• Museum of Contemporary Art (Tokyo)
Guggenheim (Venice)
• Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden (Washington DC)
• Smithsonian American Art Museum (Washington DC)
• Kunstmuseum (Wolfsburg)

TO SEARCH FOR A PARTICULAR ARTIST, BROWSE OUR A-Z OF ARTISTS

• For more biographies of contemporary artists, see: Visual Arts Encyclopedia.


ENCYCLOPEDIA OF ART
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