New Works Unveiled: Meet the Rubell Museum Artist Residents
Advisory Perspective

New Works Unveiled:
Meet the Rubell Museum Artist Residents

By Tessa Moldan | Miami, 29 November 2021

This week, the Rubell Museum unveils works by its 2020 and 2021 residents, Otis Kwame Kye Quaicoe, Kennedy Yanko, and Genesis Tramaine.

Since its inception in 2019, the museum's residency has catapulted artists including Sterling Ruby, Amoako Boafo, and Lucy Dodd to superstardom, and whilst the museum's latest residents are well established in their practices, the accolade will no doubt contribute to further demand of their work. We introduce the practices of each artist below.


Otis Kwame Kye Quaicoe, Untitled (2021). Oil on canvas. 101.6 x 152.4 cm. Acquired in 2021.

Otis Kwame Kye Quaicoe, Untitled (2021). Oil on canvas. 101.6 x 152.4 cm. Acquired in 2021. Courtesy Rubell Museum.

Otis Kwame Kye Quaicoe

Since arriving in the U.S. in 2017 from Accra, Ghana, Otis Kwame Kye Quaicoe's bold compositions have captured the attention of the art world, frequently doubling their high estimates at auction.

Punctuated by colourful planes and details, his canvases feature defiant figures that fix the gaze of viewers. For his residency at Rubell Museum, Quaicoe looked to the trope of the American cowboy as well as twins, whose birth is viewed as auspicious in Ga culture.


Genesis Tramaine, Mother. Saint. Rebekah (2020). Acrylic, oil sticks, spray paint, oil pastels, and the Holy Spirit. 182.9 x 182.9 cm. Acquired in 2020.

Genesis Tramaine, Mother. Saint. Rebekah (2020). Acrylic, oil sticks, spray paint, oil pastels, and the Holy Spirit. 182.9 x 182.9 cm. Acquired in 2020. Courtesy Rubell Museum.

Genesis Tramaine

Unabashedly emphasising her work's religious influence (this painting, Mother. Saint. Rebekah, lists the Holy Spirit as one of its materials), Genesis Tramaine manifests spirituality through striking forms and expressionistic layers of colour.

Referring to each painting as a gospel, Tramaine is a self-taught artist, who first began drawing as a child in the back of the pews at church. Today, her works take influence from gospel hymns, Bible verses, as well as 1980s graffiti in New York.

For her 2020 residency, Genesis Tramaine rendered biblical figures in abstract portraits.


Kennedy Yanko, studio view.

Kennedy Yanko, studio view. Courtesy Rubell Museum.

Kennedy Yanko

For her residency at Rubell Museum, Kennedy Yanko scoured the scrapyards of San Francisco, creating monumental sculptures out of found materials combined with her signature paint skins.

These layers of hardened paint attribute a soft, bodily quality to the otherwise hard sculptures, whose creation requires a performative engagement from the artist to manipulate their surfaces and bring the compositions together.

Alongside explorations of the interplays between hard and soft; masculine and feminine, Yanko wants to shift the view of metal as industrial—'It's actually from nature. It's made from manganese and calcium. It's no different from a flower when you look at its atoms', the artist explained to Antwaun Sargent in Vice.

Main image: Exhibition view: Otis Kwame Kye Quaicoe, 2021 Artist in Residence, Rubell Museum, Miami (29 November 2021–October 2022). Courtesy Ocula. Photo: Simon Fisher.


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