Who Are Bridget Riley, Tracey Emin, Lubaina Himid, Rachel Whiteread and Jenny Saville?
Riley was born at Norwood, London, her childhood was spent in Cornwall and Lincolnshire. She studied at Goldsmiths' College from 1949 to 1952, and at the Royal College of Art from 1952 to 1955. She began painting figure subjects in a semi-impressionist manner, then changed to pointillism around 1958, mainly producing landscapes. In 1960 she evolved a style in which she explored the dynamic potentialities of optical phenomena. These so-called 'Op-art' pieces, such as Fall, 1963, produce a disorienting physical effect on the eye.
Riley taught children for two years before joining the Loughborough School of Art, where she initiated a basic design course in 1959. She then taught at Hornsey School of Art, and from 1962 at Croydon School of Art. She worked for the J. Walter Thompson Group advertising agency from 1960, but gave up teaching and advertising agency work in 1963-4.
A British artist known for her poignant works that mine autobiographical details through a variety of media including painting, drawing, photography, video, sculpture, and neon text. She is a prominent member of the Young British Artists who rose to fame in the late 1980s. Emin’s seminal works Everyone I Have Ever Slept With 1963–1995 (1995) and My Bed (1998)—her own unmade, messy bed installed at the Tate Gallery—provocatively contributed to feminist discourse with the raw, confessional nature of her art. There should be something revelatory about art,” she reflected.
“It should be totally creative and open doors for new thoughts and experiences.” Born on July 3, 1963 in Croydon, United Kingdom, she cites Edvard Munch and Egon Schiele as early inspirations for her expressive style of self-representation. Emin went on to received her MA from the Royal College of Art in London, where she is now a Royal Academician and Honorary Doctorate. She was nominated for the Turner Prize in 1999, and was awarded a Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire in 2013. Emin currently lives and works in London, United Kingdom. The artist’s works are held in the collections of The Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Tate Gallery in London, and the Goetz Collection in Munich, among others.
Lubaina Himid MBE
Lubaina Himid’s work investigates historical representations of the people of African diaspora and highlights the importance of their cultural contribution to the contemporary landscape. Himid was one of the pioneers of the Black Art movement in the 1980’s which offered a forum for black artists exploring the social and political issues surrounding black history and identity.
She has participated at an international level in exhibitions, publications and conferences, recently co- curating Thin Black Line(s) at Tate Britain. Though she is known as a painter, recently her work has engaged with museum collections in which she has creatively interrogated the history and representation of the African diaspora and looked at the role of museums in discussion around cultural histories. She celebrates black creativity and the recognition of cultural contribution.
Dame Rachel Whiteread
(born 20 April 1963) is an English artist who primarily produces sculptures, which typically take the form of casts. She was the first woman to win the annual Turner Prize in 1993.
Whiteread was one of the Young British Artists who exhibited at the Royal Academy's Sensation exhibition in 1997. Among her most renowned works are House, a large concrete cast of the inside of an entire Victorian house; the Judenplatz Holocaust Memorial in Vienna, resembling the shelves of a library with the pages turned outwards; and Untitled Monument, her resin sculpture for the empty fourth plinth in London's Trafalgar Square.
She was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in 2006 and Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE) in the 2019 Birthday Honours for services to art.
Fascinated by pathological perceptions of the body, Jenny Saville’s paintings depict grotesque, hyperreal visions of the human figure where faces are dismembered and flesh abounds. Using thick layers of oil paint, Saville’s work challenges her genre, combining art historical tropes by merging Peter Paul Rubens’s classic figuration with Chaim Soutine’s visceral portrayals of carcasses, Cubism’s fractured planes, and Abstract Expressionism’s gestural strokes. Inspired by and reflecting a wide range of topics—from obese women in American shopping malls to bodies beyond the gender binary and brassiere imprints—Saville’s paintings have become emblematic of the female gaze. “I want to be a painter of modern life, and modern bodies,” she says. In 2018, Saville’s early nude portrait Propped (1992), which portrays a woman gripping at her flesh in the face of a cloudy mirror, sold for $12.4 million.