Here’s a look at some of the featured artwork at Vertu Fine Arts. Some of our favorite artists, like KAWS, Julien Opie and Alex Katz, are often in the news and get a lot of media attention. Many of our favorites don’t get as much attention, aren’t as mainstream and we’d like to shine a spotlight on them.
If you’ve ever seen an interview with Brian Donnelly (aka KAWS), you see a reserved, soft-spoken man, whose demeanor belies the excitement that his works create.
KAWS works have a universal appeal, and he has had highly successful collaborations with Dior, Nike and other fashion retailers. Many of his designs are bought at cost and resell for about ten times the original retail price on line. A pair of Nike Air Jordans, that he designed in 2017, sold at retail for $350 and are resold on websites like Fight Club for as much as $2,750.
Brian Donnelly is a fine artist and designer, trained at New York’s School of Visual Arts. Last week, customers in China stormed retail stores to get their hands on t-shirts that KAWS created for Uniqlo, a Japanese fashion label. After the shopping frenzy, KAWS announced that he would no longer be collaborating with Uniqlo.
Sol LeWitt is known as one of the pioneers of Minimal and Conceptual Art during the 1960s. LeWitt often put simple instructions on paper, so that his work could be recreated. In the mid-1950s, after getting his BFA from Syracuse University and serving in the Korean War, LeWitt moved to Manhattan, where he worked in the MoMA bookstore and met other struggling, young artists. By the 1960s LeWitt had become a successful artist, whose works are part of the permanent collections of the Tate Modern, the Centre Georges Pompidou and, ironically, the Museum of Modern Art. One of his permanent murals is in the Equitable Center in Manhattan…the building that was the site of a helicopter crash last week. LeWitt died in New York in 2007.
Sir Anish Kapoor
Anish Kapoor is a well-loved and very popular…and very controversial… British artist. He was born in Bombay in 1954 and moved to the UK in the early 1970s to study art. He became Sir Anish Kapoor in 2013, for his contribution to the visual arts.
One of Kapoor’s best known sculptures is Cloud Gate (nicknamed The Bean), a giant stainless steel sculpture in Chicago’s Millennium Park. One of the controversies surrounding Kapoor stems from his exclusive licensing of Vantablack, one of the darkest substances known, in spray-paint form. His licensing of Vantablack caused anger among other artists. Kapoor is preparing for his first solo show in China this coming fall.
Erik Parker’s work is both psychedelic and serene. Parker was born in Stuttgart, Germany in 1968. He studied art at the University of Texas at Austin and at Purchase College in New York. Parker and his former teacher, Peter Saul, are currently having a joint exhibition at the Nanzuka Gallery in Tokyo. Parker’s work is part of the permanent collection at MoMA. He works from his Brooklyn studio.
Retna’s unique works are a combination of calligraphy and typography. Born Marquis Lewis in Los Angeles in 1979, Retna began his career as a graffiti artist and has gone on to exhibit at major venues around the world. He has designed for Louis Vuitton and Nike, did the cover for Justin Bieber’s Purpose album and the stage set for Verdi’s Aida at the Seattle Opera.
A founder of the photo-realist painting movement in the 1960s, Richard Estes’ urban landscapes have been exhibited at the Met, the Guggenheim and are in the permanent collection of the Smithsonian. Born in Kewanee, Illinois in 1932, Estes studied at the Art Institute of Chicago. He moved to New York in 1959, lived and painted in Spain in 1962. When he returned to New York, he worked as a commercial artist until 1966, when he was able to support himself through the sale of his paintings. Estes lives and works in New York.
Featured Artwork For Sale at VFA
This is just a brief look at some of the featured artwork available at VFA. Please give us a call, or visit the gallery, if you would like more information about the works available at VFA.