London

Sanya Kantarovsky, Feeder, 2016, oil and oil pastel on canvas, 75 1⁄8 × 55 1⁄8". From “Radical Figures: Painting in the New Millennium.”

Sanya Kantarovsky, Feeder, 2016, oil and oil pastel on canvas, 75 1⁄8 × 55 1⁄8". From “Radical Figures: Painting in the New Millennium.”

London

“Radical Figures: Painting in the New Millennium”

Whitechapel Gallery
77 - 82 Whitechapel High Street
Closed until further notice

Curated by Lydia Yee

While visiting the Katja Seib exhibition at Sadie Coles HQ last year with my students, I asked them what they thought about the resurgence of figurative painting. The unworried looks I received confirmed that debates about painting the human after abstraction are now consigned to twentieth-century art history. And while the stakes around identity and representation have perhaps never been more contested, current discussions are conducted along lines quite distinct from those of the Black Arts Movement of the 1960s–’70s, for example. In presenting work by artists including Michael Armitage, Christina Quarles, and Dana Schutz, this survey of recent figural work should provide us with the means to explore, once again, the distinct meanings of the word radical when it is used to describe art as compared to when it is used to describe politics.