The artists of now, inspiring the art world of tomorrow.
“Top 40: Artists to Watch” is a list recognizing talented up and coming artists who are making an impact in art and culture through their work.
top 5: 2023
ART BY AYALA
Vibrantly Empowering Women
Ayala explores inclusive beauty through vibrant portraits to empower women, drawing inspiration from a combination of her Native ancestry and representation.
Photo credit: byayala.com
The Art of Streetwear
Extra Ketchup is a graffiti artist, creator of wearable art and gallery owner in Brooklyn, New York creating work that celebrates and preserves urban and street cultures.
Photo credit: @extraketchup
The Afro-Pop Artist
Yuzly captures the often-conflicting expanse of human emotions, including shared
experiences of pain and love, through oil paintings on canvas, street art, and
Never Broken heARTed
"I call my paintings "Bitter Darlings ®," because they radiate whimsical, messy versions of perfectly imperfect beauty and capture how dynamic we are in a way that oftentimes cannot be adequately described with words."
top 40: 2023
A Leader for Artists Everywhere
"Tyra Powers is a visual artist, born in Cincinnati, Ohio but raised in Baltimore, Md. Her love for art began at a young age and has followed her throughout life. She uses the world around her as her muse, producing marks of realism, portraits, oil paintings and abstract art. The majority of her skills were self-taught, but she did attend the Baltimore School for the Arts to expand and grow."
Photo credit: @tyra_powers
The Purposeful Collage Artist
Marryam Moma is "intrigued by using collage as a platform to share life experiences, open a dialogue about social issues close to heart, celebrate the human form and reinforce ideas about individuality and self-love. The process of deconstructing images and then re-integrating many pieces to create something completely new is an intuitive and ongoing visual experiment in which color, texture, shape, light, and space come into play. The ready-made and re-created dance across blank space to form something new, tells a new and unique story."
Photo credit: @marryammomaart
A New Take on Culinary Art
Justin Wu, known as The Hungry Artist of New York, is a digital artist who is eating and creating his way through NYC. Justin visits local restaurants throughout New York and creates collaborative videos along with an art piece to help promote the community and product of the space.
Photo credit: @hungryartistny
AJ Lavilla is a NYC based graffiti-pop artist that inspires viewers to not only dream big, but pursue their dreams with hustle and motivation. An advocate for the arts, AJ also has a non-profit in the Philippines dedicated to providing children with art workshops.
Photo credit: @ajlavilla
Corey Lee is a Rapper and alum of Hot 97's "Who's Next"
Nominated for his work in hip hop, Corey has an electric stage presence and is circulating the scene including his recent spotting at the BET awards.
Photo credit: @coreylee610
The Unfazed Artist
Robert Blanco is a Cuban-American Miami native that is currently based in NYC. His artwork is heavily influenced by his surroundings and experiences. Robert has exhibited in various shows and created outstanding murals city-wide in Los Angeles, New York, Puerto Rico, and Miami. He is very well known for his art characters that don't really carry a name for themselves but more of an emotion, "Unfazed".
Photo credit: robertblanco.com
Girl PWR, Law & Acrylic Paints
"Julia Ambros is a self-taught oil and acrylic artist. A first generation American, Julia graduated summa cum laude from New York University in 2017 and received her juris doctorate from Columbia Law School in 2020. She is from Albany, New York and based in New York City. She speaks French, Spanish, and limited Polish, and has been to 26 countries and counting."
Photo credit: jambrosart.com
Abstract Hip Hop
Francis Gautier is an abstract graffiti artist from Providence, Rhode Island. Now based in NYC, Francis has become well-known throughout the NYC and hip hop scenes through his showings with the 60 collective, the Culture Candy and solo exhibitions including WuTang performances and NBA player appearances.
Painting the Abstract
"Emmy Marshall is a self- taught abstract painter from Atlanta, GA. Emmy’s creative process is organic and spontaneous. He uses unconventional tools to paint with. Examples include thread, shoes, tablemats, and the list go on. What emerges is an integral language that is both emotional and personal. The unique human experience of color is what inspires him as an artist."
Photo credit: paintedbyemmy.com
Artist + Author
Sean Fahie is a contract Illustrator, Graphic Designer, Creative Consultant, and Author based out of Atlanta, GA that empowers his community through his work.
Photo credit: @seanfahie
The Portrait Artist
"Monel Aliote is a Haitian artist that crafts masterful portraits that penetrate the mere likeness of a person, going beyond to depict the passion and soul of the individual. Focusing particularly on famous or influential individuals who are working to make changes in the world, his work aims to tell the story of the individual by evoking their character, emotions, attitudes, intentions, and mood. Inspired by music culture such as that of jazz, rock and roll, and R&B, many of the figures Aliote chooses to paint are musicians and performers who he read about and listened to throughout his youth."
Photo credit: @monelaliote
Lee Lee La Cubana
The Art Empress
Ashley Miah, known as Lee Lee La Cubana, is an NYC based pop-artist who creates nostalgic works that are reflective of her cultures, community, and upbringing in urban New York. Serving as a reminder of internal riches, Ashley's art signature is the diamond and aims to spread reminders of internal wealth with her current collection.
Brit Dats Hip
The Wearable Artist
Brit Dats Hip is an artist from D.C. who creates high vibrational, vibrant works of canvas and wearable art. Brit frequently shows through Philadelphia, NYC, D.C. and now Los Angeles in which she recently premiered her wearable art collection during L.A. Fashion Week.
Photo credit: @art.is.brit
Junior Charles is an African American NYC based pop artist who brings color to his hometown of Brooklyn by exploring bold colors in botanical imagery. He aims to spread beauty and color in gray areas and bring life to urban and industrial areas.
The Kindness Consultant
MC Hewlett is an artist, trans-activist, and kindness consultant based in NYC. They create vibrant abstract-pop pieces that are representative of themself and their community, bringing joy, kindness and freedom to the viewer. MC is frequently showcased throughout NYC, Connecticut, Atlanta, Miami and D.C.
The Musical Painter
Christopher Weeden, known as Smurfo throughout the NYC underground music and art scenes, was born and raised in Brooklyn. He creates music that celebrates the musical roots of his family and painted graffiti-pop works as an ode to his city and culture.
Photo credit: @smurfoudirty
Art + Science
Jency Sekaran an Indian-American artist and epidemiologist based in NYC. The figures in her work, always different shades of brown, break the standards of Indian culture through Westernized poses, hair length and color, clothing and tattoos. Patterns and designs become anchors in her work, seen as organic chemistry and henna designs which have no beginning or end symbolizing the unity of two identities.
The Truth in this Art
Rob Lee is a podcast host and creative, behind The Truth in This Art, a podcast that has been recognized at the best in Baltimore. His podcast features artists, creative industry executives and entrepreneurs across America, highlighting their personal journeys in creative industries.
Photo credit: @thetruthinthisart
Eric Orr is the World's First Hip-Hop Comic Book Creator and the Only Keith Haring Subway Drawing Collaborator.
Photo credit: @orrdesigns
Illustrator and Animal Lover
Sandra Jockus is a NYC-based illustrator and artist originally from Lithuania. Sandra enjoys observing people & animals on the streets of New York, which is reflected in her colorful and often humor-filled illustrations.
Photo credit: @sandrajockus
The Connected Artist
Michelle Buser is an artist from the DMV area, who has relocated to NYC in pursuit of her art career. Since her move, she has showcased throughout the underground NYC art scene making her a well-known and widely acknowledge talent in the creative community. Her work is meaningful and draws you to wonder about the life of the subject and how we are all connected.
Photo credit: @michellebuser_art
The Alternitive Multimedia Artist
Slaughter DK is an alternative multimedia artist based in Hudson County, NJ. Frequently showcasing his work throughout the Tri-State Area, inluding solo exhibitions at The Greenhive Atelier in Union City, Slaughter DK confidently creates statement work that keeps the audience engaged.
The Self-Taught Artist
Josie Woods is a BK and Arizona based multimedia artist, she uses visual art as a tool to translate her musical influences. Josie has showcased her work throughout New York City as well as California, Italy and Spain.
Photo credit: @josiewoodss
Dear Mr. Melon
Dear Mr. Melon is a New Jersey based multidisciplinary artist originally from Jamaica. He uses a variety of mediums to create works that are all extensions of his life story.
Photo credit: @dearmrmelon
Styled by Sameer
Sameer Bhatia is a NYC-based painter, stylist, and musician. His brand, "Organic Decline", dives into modern-day abstract surrealism and effortlessly connects the world of art and fashion. With appearances from the Sour Mouse to Art Apply NYC, Sameer continues to bridge the gap between the art and fashion industry one seam at a time.
Photo credit: @sameerbhatiastudio
Ms. Lola Deville
The Art of Drag
Ms. Lola Deville is a Poughkeepsie based drag-artist and actor. She loves performance art because it's a chance to live her fantasy and she loves to share that with an adoring crowd. She uses her art to encourage others into expressing themselves through drag and is even the mother of her own Haus.
Photo credit: @ms.deville
The Community Muralist
Shanice Figeroux is an absract muralist and painter based in Queens, New York. Her work captures movement and moments, and are intended to bring joy and positive movement forward for her community. This Artivist puts the community first by often participating in community art therapy events, creating works for display in urban communities, and organizing donations for art supplies.
Mello's Art Life
Mello is a multidisciplinary artist who creates canvas, murals, digital and design work. He creates with purpose and aims to connect to his audience through storytelling, using each piece to express himself and his journey. An advocate for art education, Mello also does community work by conducting art workshops for children to teach the importance of self-expression through art.
Photo credit: @mellos.artlife
Healing through Music
Kahuna is an ATL based rapper and artist. He uses his art to bring awareness to mental health within his community. Check out his new single, “Mental2”, streaming on all platforms.
Photo credit: @kahunaisland
Cin 4 Me
The Art of Rolling
Cindy, known as Cinn4Me, is a Latina Queens native specializing in urban multimedia art. Most popular being her rolling trays that capture the essence of everyday New York life to Latin Pop-Culture. Cin has participated in various pop-ups throughout the boroughs to make sure her rolling trays make their appearances from local restaurants and bars to Bushwick's very own, Ketchup Gallery, where you can find her rolling trays for sale on the galleries window display.
"C Da Don"
Christian Bernier, known as C Da Don, is a Haitian-American rapper based in Long Island, New York. Well known for his Kella Fella Freestyle Fridays ("KFFridays"), he continues to create a name for himself in hip hop while continuing to share his insight and resources for fellow up-and-coming artists in support of his community. Check out his singles, "Hatian Goon" and "Emotions", streaming on all platforms.
Uplifting the Community
Anthony McDonald, known as Ant Art, believes in uplifting black and brown people by creating work that celebrates and empowers figures in their image. A talented and purposful graphic artist, painter and muralist, Ant has showcased his work throughout New York City and has collaborated with multiple collectives.
Samantha Vega is an up and coming singer, songwriter, and actress based in Poughkeepsie, New York, with performances in NYC. Specializing in R&B, Samantha's angelic vocals have a way of capturing her audience's soul and pulling them into their feels. Don't believe us? Check out her newest single, "Woman Like That", streaming on all platforms.