Words: Patrick McCrae, pictured above
For art-lovers, 2020 might have felt like a year to forget, with museums and galleries unable to open their doors. But as Christmas approaches, there is still time to inject some festive inspiration into the life of a loved one.
For artists wanting to show their work, the challenges of reaching people in a year impacted by lockdown have been unique, but what has not changed is the incredible skill and creativity that queer artists have been using to create iconic artworks.
Earlier this year, ARTIQ's Queer Frontiers exhibition gave a tantalizing glimpse at the phenomenal talent on show in the LGBTQ+ community, with proceeds split between ensuring fair pay for participating artists, and various causes affecting the LGBTQ+ community.
Now, with Christmas creeping up on us, I have picked out my tips for four queer artists whose work will make the perfect festive gift:
Gavin Dobson - 'The Naughty Naked Giant'
This work is typical of the free brush strokes, explosive colour and cheeky narrative that epitomize Gavin’s paintings. In this work, a mischievous giant runs through the woods in an effort by the artist to bring humour to the collector’s wall.
Originally hailing from the North East of England, Gavin initally uses canvasses as colour palettes for other paintings, which then evolve into works in their own right. The Naughty Naked Giant is priced at £325.
Emily Kirby - 'Let’s Dance'
Born into a family of artists in Zambia, Emily’s roots continue to have a deep impact in influencing her art. Emily’s work draws on the study of people, using the figure as her central object for interpretation.
Her exploration of colours, light and form gives her works a raw expression of emotion and movement. Let’s Dance is inspired by our need to connect with each other, and is a celebration of the energy betweew women when they dance together. This piece, is priced at £500.
KV Duong - 'We Are Human IV'
An innate sense of urgency permeates KV’s paintings and performance work. Often focussing on history and migration, KV draws upon integration and conflict between Eastern and Western cultures, as well as themes of sexuality and human relationships.
We Are Human IV was created while in isolation, and encompasses the emotions the artist was, and still is, experiencing, particularly on the need to remind ourselves that we are human, with flaws and impatience, but also love and gratitude.
This piece is priced at £395.
Liliana Romero - 'LETSGETLUCKY'
Liliana is a specialist printmaker, whose works explore issues of black-feminist activism, gender and sexuality. Colombian-born, Liliana uses bold typography, cultural symbolism and vibrant colour as forms of expression.
In this work, the artist was inspired by the symbol of the Japanese lucky cat, which is curiously prominent in the capital city of Colombia, Bogota, where the artist was raised.Liliana playfully incorporates the typeface that was previously popular with the city’s public transport system, creating a message of nostalgia and optimism in this print work.
LETSGETLUCKY is priced at £500.
To find more works available for purchase, please visit ARTIQ’s Twelve Artists of Christmas Exhibition Online at Artiq's Instagram.