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Marvelous Art from the 1980s, Just a Click Away from Being Yours!

  • Jiang Tie Feng - Playing Water (detail), 1988
March 21, 2018
A philosophy graduate interested in theory, politics and art. Alias of Jelena Martinović.

The 1980s was one of the most productive decades in contemporary art. In this decade when MTV and CNN came of age, the stock market soared and crashed, and the AIDS crisis grew ever more frightening, ties among art, advertising and culture shifted. For artists, virtually nothing was off the limits.

From the works of Barbara Kruger, known for her poignant social, cultural, and political critique and intimate portraits by the acclaimed photographer Annie Leibovitz to the colorful works of Kenny Scharf and those of David Salle, who regenerated big, gestural, expressionist painting after years of pared-down minimalism and conceptual art, we bring you some outstanding works of art from the roaring 1980s in all its diversity, straight from our own Marketplace..

  • Alexander Befelein - Fribourg, 1984

Alexander Befelein - Fribourg, 1984

A German artist, Alexander Befelein is best known for his subtle etchings of the cities such as New York, Chicago, Venice, Prague, Kuala Lumpur and many others. In a few delicate lines, the artist captures the essence of each place.

In this work from 1984, Befelein depicted Fribourg in Switzerland. The artist has created a virtuoso play with contrasts between light and dark, warm and cold, big and small, intensified and hinted at, detailed and informal, line and color and so on. A part of the picture is left as a drawing, making the colored areas appear even more brilliant and vice versa.

See more information about the work here.

  • Annie Leibovitz - Mick Jagger NYC, 1980

Annie Leibovitz - Mick Jagger NYC, 1980

The American photographer Annie Leibovitz is best known for her intimate portraits of celebrity figures, such as politicians, musicians and athletes. By choosing specific poses, expressions, using props and dress, she reveals the personalities of her subjects.

In this 1980s color portrait of Mick Jagger, Leibovitz photographed the musician shirtless and sporting a full beard, engaging directly with the camera. This image differs from the rest of the photographs of The Rolling Stones and its members she has created.

See more information about the work here.

  • Barbara Kruger - Reach Out And Touch Someone, 1989

Barbara Kruger - Reach Out And Touch Someone, 1989

One of the most celebrated American conceptual artists, Barbara Kruger is best known for layering photographs with provocative statements on issues surrounding commercial culture, feminism, and identity politics. Using image and text, her short declarative statements communicate directly with the viewer.

The work Reach Out and Touch Someone from 1989 was created for the Brooklyn Academy of Artists portfolio. Demonstrating Kruger’s distinct style of combining a black and white image and suggestive text, the image feature an image of a child and a phrase “reach out and touch someone”.

See more about the work here.

  • David Salle - Theme from an Aztec Moralist II, 1983

David Salle - Theme from an Aztec Moralist II, 1983

The American painter David Salle helped define postmodern sensibility. Combining traditional figuration with Pop Art’s obsession for disparate images, he rejuvenated postmodernism and Neo-expressionism by adding humor and theatricality.

The work Theme from and Aztec Moralist II from 1983 is at the same time cartoonish and menacing. The work features dozens of sketches of provocatively posed nudes and stern men, creating a dizzying visual density.

See more information about the work here.

  • Jiang Tie Feng - Playing Water, 1988

Jiang Tie Feng - Playing Water, 1988

A founder of Yunnan School of Painting, one of the most influential abstract movements in China, Jiang Tie Feng is known for works of rich color palette that combine figurative elements and interesting patterns. Exploring themes that are universal, his images depict fertility, motherly love, strength and primordial human emotions.

The work Playing Water from 1988 demonstrates the artist’s recognizable combination of vibrant colors, figurative motifs, abstract elements and patterns. It is a portrayal of the Yunnan Thai Water Festival.

See more information about the work here.

  • Kenny Scharf - wilma + george, 1981

Kenny Scharf - wilma + george, 1981

The work of Kenny Scharf is often described as playful, optimistic, bubbly and full of joy. However, darker issues of the modern world are often lurking beneath the colorful and idyllic surface of his paintings and collages.

The Flinstones and the Jetstones have been recurring subjects of Scharf’s works. Influenced by such varying movements as Surrealism and Pop Art, the artist blended these pop culture characters within a surreal setting. Creating a fascinating alternate world, he depicted Wilma Flintstone as a serpent and George Jetstone as a pre-historic bird.

See more information about the work here.