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‘An Opera for Animals’ at Rockbund Art Museum Ocula Report ‘An Opera for Animals’ at Rockbund Art Museum 19 Jul 2019 : Penny Liu for Ocula

An Opera for Animals was first staged at Para Site in Hong Kong between 23 March and 2 June 2019, with works by over 48 artists and collectives that use opera as a metaphor for modes of contemporary, cross-disciplinary art-making. The exhibition's second iteration takes up a large portion of the Rockbund Art Museum (RAM) in Shanghai (22 June–25...

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Mandy El-Sayegh: Productive Ambiguity Ocula Conversation Mandy El-Sayegh: Productive Ambiguity

Moving across installation, painting, drawing, and writing, Malaysia-born and London-based artist Mandy El-Sayegh explores the political, social, and economic complexities of humanity, using a mosaic of information—from advertising slogans and pornographic imagery to newspaper articles—that she subjects to processes of layering,...

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Get Up, Stand Up Now: Generations of Black Creative Pioneers at Somerset House Ocula Report Get Up, Stand Up Now: Generations of Black Creative Pioneers at Somerset House 5 Jul 2019 : Jareh Das for Ocula

Get Up Stand Up Now: Generations of Black Creative Pioneers at Somerset House in London (12 June–15 September 2019) surveys more than half a century of black creativity in Britain and beyond across the fields of art, film, photography, music, design, fashion, and literature.Curated by Zak Ové, works by approximately 100 intergenerational black...

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Lisa Yuskavage

b. 1962, USA

New York-based Lisa Yuskavage (b. 1962, Philadelphia) is a figurative painter minutely versed in the history of the medium, channelling artists from Francisco de Goya to Édouard Vuillard and Philip Guston in her ostensibly kitschy canvases. With references also ranging from old master paintings to 1970s soft porn, her paintings are immediately recognisable for their absurdly proportioned naked and semi-clad women, but also for acid-bright landscapes, uncanny interiors and hippie figures that seem to have been cross-pollinated with religious icons. She sensitively deploys colour to convey the emotional states of her figures who appear alone, in pairs or in tableaux, and who in more recent times, have begun to include men. In addition to the figures' delight in their own fleshiness, there is also an overpowering sense of otherworldliness at play in her use of colour and form.

Yuskavage earned her BFA at Tyler School of Art, Temple University in 1984 and her MFA at Yale University School of Art in 1986. Her breakthrough came in the early 90s, with The Ones That Shouldn't: The Gifts (1991) and the ‘The Ones That Don't Want To’ series (1991–2), the latter of which the artist also refers to as her ‘Bad Babies’. The earlier work shows a large-breasted young woman emerging from a rich green background with a sprig of flowers stuffed in her mouth and her arms pulled behind her back. ‘The Ones That Don’t Want To’ paintings, meanwhile, are shockingly vibrant portraits of girls naked from the waist down, who appear to be merging with their pulsating backgrounds and stare (with the exception of one slightly more dreamy figure) disconcertingly at the viewer. Rising to prominence around the same time as other figurative painters such as Elizabeth Peyton and John Currin, in the 1990s Yuskavage commanded solo shows at galleries in New York, Santa Monica, Milan and London. In 2000, she held an important solo in her hometown of Philadelphia, at the Institute of Contemporary Art. ‘I confirmed for myself that she paints wonderfully, and that wonderful painting is what concerns her,’ wrote Peter Schjeldahl in the New Yorker at the time. Notable other solo exhibitions have taken place at Centre d'Art Contemporain, Geneva (2001); Royal Academy of Arts, London (2002); Museo Tamayo Arte Contemporáneo, Mexico City (2006); and The Royal Hibernian Academy, Dublin (2011). A major survey spanning 25 years of of Yuskavage’s work titled The Brood opened at the Rose Art Museum, Brandeis University in 2015 (12 September–13 December 2015), and later traveled to Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis (15 January–3 April 2016). An in-depth book was published by Skira Rizzoli in association with the Rose Art Museum.

Yuskavage’s work is held in the collections of The Art Institute of Chicago; Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, D.C.; Long Museum, Shanghai; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; The Museum of Modern Art, New York; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; Walker Art Center, Minneapolis, Minnesota; and the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York.

Laura Allsop

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Featured Artworks

Pond by Lisa Yuskavage contemporary artwork
Lisa YuskavagePond, 2007 Oil on linen
182.9 x 129.5 cm
David Zwirner
Forces by Lisa Yuskavage contemporary artwork
Lisa YuskavageForces, 2007 Four colour lithograph on BFK Rives paper
37 7/8 x 30 1/8 inches
David Zwirner
Art Students by Lisa Yuskavage contemporary artwork
Lisa YuskavageArt Students, 2018 Intaglio with chine-collé on Ivory Revere Suede paper
16 1/8 x 13 7/8 inches
David Zwirner
Merlot by Lisa Yuskavage contemporary artwork
Lisa YuskavageMerlot, 2017 Intaglio with chine-collé on Ivory Revere Suede paper
16 1/8 x 13 7/8 inches
David Zwirner
Bonfire by Lisa Yuskavage contemporary artwork
Lisa YuskavageBonfire, 2018 Intaglio with chine-collé on Ivory Revere Suede paper
15 1/8 x 12 5/8 inches
David Zwirner
Hippies in Tit Heaven by Lisa Yuskavage contemporary artwork
Lisa YuskavageHippies in Tit Heaven, 2015 Lithograph in twelve colours on paper
39 5/8 x 34 3/4 inches
David Zwirner

Recent Exhibitions

View All (7)
Contemporary art exhibition, Group Exhibition, Singing the Body Electric at David Zwirner, Hong Kong
Closed
11 July–10 August 2019 Group Exhibition Singing the Body Electric David Zwirner, Hong Kong
Contemporary art exhibition, Group Exhibition, Basel Online Viewing Room at David Zwirner, New York
Closed
13–23 June 2019 Group Exhibition Basel Online Viewing Room David Zwirner
Contemporary art exhibition, Lisa Yuskavage, Lisa Yuskavage Prints Online Viewing Room at David Zwirner, New York
Closed
15–27 November 2018 Lisa Yuskavage Lisa Yuskavage Prints Online Viewing Room David Zwirner

Represented By

In Ocula Magazine

Lisa Yuskavage Ocula Conversation Lisa Yuskavage Artist, New York

With a career spanning over 30 years, New York-based Lisa Yuskavage (b. 1962, Philadelphia) is a figurative painter minutely versed in the history of the medium, channelling artists from Francisco de Goya to Édouard Vuillard and Philip Guston in her ostensibly kitschy canvases. Her paintings are immediately recognisable by their absurdly...

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In Related Press

"No Man's Land" review – Miami's Art Basel week kicks off with all-female show Related Press "No Man's Land" review – Miami's Art Basel week kicks off with all-female show The Guardian : 3 December 2015

No Man’s Land is not a museum exhibition; it’s a private collection showcase. But the Rubells are shrewd and unorthodox collectors, and the presentation raises some big points – above all, the enduring question of how women artists building on a male-dominated history of art should depict their own sex. Yet most of...

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Good World to Be In: An Interview with Lisa Yuskavage Related Press Good World to Be In: An Interview with Lisa Yuskavage Paris Review Daily : 6 May 2015

Since her arrival on the art scene some twenty-five years ago, Lisa Yuskavage has made a name for herself with paintings that use classical techniques to depict unabashedly taboo subjects. Her creations—awash in radiant, hallucinatory colors and featuring hedonistic heroines unlike anything else in art today—are instantly identifiable....

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