Dear people of Widewalls, it’s that time of the month again! Today, we are counting down our picks for the top 10 most popular artists of March! We’ve already moved deeply into 2016, and it seems like it was only yesterday when our top list of most popular contemporary artists of 2015 found its place on our website. But, fear not, maybe we are getting older, but that just makes us more golden. The same principle can be applied to the artists on our list, some of them are newcomers, some of them have been here for quite some time, and some of them just won’t quit being the number one! In the era of Internet and social media, the popularity of an artist is measured by the demand of people who search for their works and biographies online, and this is precisely why we have decided to give it a go one more time and comprise the list of the most popular contemporary artists of the previous month. So, if you are curious to find out more, keep scrolling!
And don’t forget to let us know which one of these artists is your favorite on our Facebook page!
Number 10 on our list goes to Mr. Nobuyoshi Araki. The Japanese photographer, also known by the nickname Arākī, who works in the field of female eroticism and his hometown of Tokyo. His erotic photographs have been labelled as pornographic in the past, but that didn’t stop him from becoming one of the most prolific Japanese artists. Araki has published over 350 books by 2005 and producing more and more each year, among which are Sentimental Journey, published in 1971, and Tokyo Lucky Hole (1985). Not only does he work in the medium of photography, Araki is no stranger to the filmmaking artistry, as well as the field of album art, as he had photographed the Icelandic musician Björk’s album cover for her record Telegram.
While we are still on the topic of Japan, here is another artist whose fascination with this country has made him who he is today. We are, of course, talking about Hush. A British artist most famous for his mixture of various techniques, such as graffiti, collage, stencil, and drawing to name a few, uses his talents to depict traditional Japanese female entertainers – geishas and to capture their femininity and sensuality in a true street art manner. The artist’s work will soon be featured at Dallas Contemporary Museum for the MTV RE:DEFINE on April 8th, 2016. His fascination with the female form, as well as his masterful creative process has helped him land a special spot on our March top 10.
Guys, things are getting serious. Helmut Newton is no. 8 on our top 10 list, having jumped here from the 55th place. Amazing, right? No wonder, since Helmut Newton was one of the most influential fashion photographers, whose pictures were charged with eroticism and usually shot in black-and-white. His works were the staple for Vogue and other influential fashion publications and continue to be so even now. In October 2003, a few months before his death, Helmut Newton has established the Helmut Newton Foundation which is an organization devoted to the conservation and demonstration of his work.
Herakut is a German artistic duo, whose name is comprised of the aliases of the painter, Hera, and the graffiti artist, Akut. They are devoted to conveying the “message”, by captivating their viewers with the beauty of their work, and then letting them figure out the deeper meaning of their art. They believe that the process of going to an art school is not mandatory for artists who want to communicate with their audience on a creative level, and they are against producing sexually provocative art just for the sake of it. Their depictions of nudity are always for the purpose of symbolizing the beauty of the human being, and no obscenity is taking place there. They are having a solo exhibition at Corey Helford Gallery, and they are definitely worth checking out.
“Believe it or not, I can actually draw”. A direct quote from Jean-Michel Basquiat, a beloved artist here at Widewalls. We have written numerous times about him, and no wonder, since Basquiat was a prominent American artist who has left a great impact on the hip-hop, post-punk, and street art scene. His art focused on the dichotomies of poverty and wealth, segregation and integration, and outer and inner experiences. He used social commentary in his works and has appropriated poetry, painting, and drawing in his abstract, neo-expressionist manner. If you want to know more about this amazing artist, go ahead and check out our list of his most expensive artwork and his street art masterpieces.
The American artist with Korean roots is number five on our list. David Choe is known for his figure painting style, and he investigates the themes of degradation and desire. The muralist, graffiti artist, designer, and illustrator has been busy in 2015 and produced a number of amazing artworks, and who knows what he’s got in store for us in 2016? Being a versatile artist as he is, it is no wonder that Choe has ventured on to a new journey of hosting a podcast called DVDASA (Double Vag Double Anal Sensitive Artist), only to move on to being a part of a performance art/punk band Mangchi, and taking a stage name IGLOO HONG.
Mao Lizi is a Chinese-born artist whose works portray the simplicity and beauty of the world. Influenced by Chinese calligraphy and painting, his abstract works capture the moment that usually escapes one’s eye in the rush of the everyday life. A partially self-taught painter has worked as a designer for the Chinese Air Force. Mao Lizi has been a part of a group exhibition Art Central at Parkview art Hong Kong. His works focus on the detail and his insistence on the simplicity is what makes him one of the most unpredictable, most prominent contemporary Chinese artists of his generation.
Number 3 on our list goes to David Hamilton. A British photographer and film director is best known for his photographs of nude young girls. Much controversy has been hovering above his oeuvre, he was even the subject of some child-pornography allegations. The 2005 scandal involving David Hamilton’s book, in which a member of the Surrey Police in Britain claimed that the possession of the book was illegal in the UK, has brought upon many debates around his work. Hamilton’s photographs were surrounded by questions of whether they were art or pornography. Having all these controversies surrounding his work, and still having managed to be one of the most influential and talked about photographers in the world puts him this high on our list.
A Puerto Rican muralist and painter Alexis Diaz, is proudly occupying the second place on our list! He is known for his whimsical and dreamlike depictions of animals. His works have been exhibited at the galleries all over the world, from Bratislava, over Las Vegas, all the way to Mexico, and London. The animals that inhabit his surfaces look like they have come from a dreamland, simultaneously realistic and phantasmagorical. Alexis Diaz’s surreal imagery is created freehand, leaving the viewers in awe when they stand in front of his murals. He has been the artist of the week in December of 2014 here at Widewalls, and we just cannot get enough of him and his magical images. Alexis Diaz truly deserves to be at the almost-top of our list!
Surprise, surprise – Banksy is our number one most popular artist for the month of March! Banksy and his thought-provoking works are so popular and sought after, that it is only logical that he is occupying the first place on all top lists, not just ours. Even though we know virtually nothing about the elusive artist, his works never cease to amaze us and the people around the world. Whether he is criticizing the consumerist society, or the ongoing immigrant crisis, Banksy’s works are definitely the epitome of the contemporary street art of today. If you want to check out something more on Banksy, check out our list of his most expensive works. The only thing left to figure out is, who Banksy actually is, and what does he plan to do next!
Below, take a look at the complete list of the most popular contemporary artists of the month behind us, and compare their ranking to previous months of 2016! Is your favorite on it?