Charlene Austin tells you which artists to keep an eye on from now on

With her Okra Agency set Charlene Austin underexposed talent on the map. She has an eye for talent, the history behind the art and seeks innovation and variety within creative scene. Especially for Harper’s Bazaar, she put together her 8 favorites at the moment, which you will definitely hear a lot more about. From impressive sculpture that won awards at the International Venice Biennale to thoughtful photography, it is these artists you will keep an eye on.

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8x artists you want to keep an eye on

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Charlene: ‘The figurative painting style of Danielle Joy Mckinney reminds me of works by one of my favorite artists, viz Lynette Yiadom Boakye† McKinney creates intimate, dreamy portraits of female characters who are often in casual poses. She deals with themes such as spirituality, self-reflection and paints with a keen awareness of the female gaze. ‘

Charlene: ‘Zohra Opuku is a conceptual photographer who puts the textile industry at the center of his work. With her photograph, she explores how the political, psychological and sociocultural role of fashion affects African history and the formation of personal identities. For her photography, she uses serigraphy techniques and alternative photo processing on different types of natural fabrics. She repeatedly integrates family heritage and images of herself into her work. ‘

Charlene: ‘Joseph Awuah-Darko is the founder and director of Ghana’s first museum of contemporary art Institute Museum of Ghana and Noldor Artist Residency, an art residency and Communityprogram for African contemporary artists. The young African art specialist, social entrepreneur and philanthropist is committed to giving artists from Africa and its diaspora the opportunity to develop and gain access to the worldwide art world. ‘

Charlene: ‘Simone Yvette Leigh recently with his work Brick house, a nearly 5m high bronze bust of a black woman, won the Golden Lion’s award at the Venice Biennale in Italy and is therefore an artist not to be missed. She is known for her sculptures, videos, installations and public projects exploring contemporary racism in America. With a background in ceramics, Leigh often works with materials, shapes and techniques borrowed from traditional African art. ‘

Charlene: ‘During my trip to New York a few weeks ago, I visited the BLACK VENUS exhibition curated by the British Aindrea Emelife and I’ve been a fan of this young curator ever since. By combining curation, writing, public speaking and broadcasting, Emelife is committed to highlighting different art perspectives. ”

Charlene: ‘The South African Lunga Ntila is a conceptual photographer who creates new worlds through photography and collage techniques. Topics such as self-reflection and identity are central to her work. ‘

Charlene: ‘Dominique Petit-Frere is creative director and co-founder of Limbo Accra, a spatial design studio based in Accra, Copenhagen and New York. Dedicated to architectural projects, art installations and urban design in West African cities, her practice is centered around innovative and hybrid forms of place-making. She recently won the Instagram design award #BlackDesignVisonaries and the Monocle Design Award. ‘

Charlene: ‘Nifemi Marcus Bello is an industrial designer and founder of the design studio nmbello Studio, based in Lagos Nigeria. Bello makes sustainable furniture and products according to a design ethos that goes hand in hand with empathy for local products and the local environment. One of his most famous products is LM Stool – a unique organic design made of a flexible metal used in Nigeria for power generators. As a design studio, they embrace ‘the novelty and lack of a real design process because it allows them to see with fresh eyes and a new perspective’.

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