8 thriving artists at No.20 arts

Xu Yang’s spectacular baroque works on velvet, Jukka Virkkunen’s dramatically draped darkly inked cotton sheets, Sholto Blissett’s fresh take on landscape painting, Sam Creasey’s dystopian urban environment on paper, Hengzhi Gong’s absurd dreamlike depictions of situations on canvas, Sasha Ferré’s poetically abstract paintings, Lingrui Zhang’s meticulously detailed figurative oil paintings, and Gianna Dispenza’s bold impasto expressive images - what do these artists with a range of artistic styles on view at No. 20 Arts have in common?

All artists within this range of artistic practices, despite being born out of extreme and uncertain environments, they somehow all seem to resonate together and flourish. That's what they have in common. These eight exceptional 2020 RCA grads, against all odds, thrive in difficult conditions. As most of the works are created in 2020, they proved their resourcefulness by creating these artworks under extreme uncertainty and difficulty. Hence the name of the show Wintergreen Boxwood at Islington’s No 20 Arts, a plant famous for being able to do the same. 


The exhibition is an opportunity to view recent developments in contemporary painting,  Wintergreen Boxwood runs until November 15 at No 20 Arts for more information click here. Participating artists: Sholto Blissett, Sam Creasey, Gianna Dispenza, Sasha Ferré, Hengzhi Gong, Jukka Virkkunen, Xu Yang and Lingrui Zhang. 


Cover image: Installation shot from left to right: Lingrui Zhang, A Man, A Woman, 2017 Oil on linen; Jukka Virkkunen Cloth 03, 2020 Indian ink and debris from the street on a cotton twill dust sheet, dimensions variable; Sasha Ferré, Regarde les deux pôles; tous deux fument déjà; si le feu les gagne, vos palais s'écrouleront, 2020 Acrylic on linen (unstretched); Sasha Ferré, A Memorable Conversation, 2020 Acrylic on linen (unstretched); Gianna Dispenza, Sitter I, 2020 Clay, grout, filler, gouache, graphite, charcoal, oil bar, PVA on print; Gianna Dispenza Sitter II, 2020 Gouache, oil bar, and charcoal on print.


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Xu Yang, Snake for the Lover, 2020. Oil on linen. 160h x 150w cm. Courtesy of the artist.


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Hengzhi Gong, The Fisherman, 2020. Oil on canvas150h x 120w cm. Courtesy of the artist.

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From left to right: Sam Creasey, Not In My Back Yard, 2020. Oil on thick Fabriano Paper. 82h x 64w cm; Sam Creasey, The Last Few, 2019. Oil on thick Fabriano Paper Framed: 82h x 64w cm; Sam Creasey, White City Approach, 2019. Oil on thick Fabriano Paper 82h x 64w cm; Sam Creasey, Sales Pitch, 2020. Oil on thick Fabriano Paper 82h x 64w cm. Courtesy of the artist.




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From left to right: Gianna Dispenza, Sitter I, 2020 Clay, grout, filler, gouache, graphite, charcoal, oil bar, PVA on print; Gianna Dispenza Sitter II, 2020 Gouache, oil bar, and charcoal on print; Sholto Blissett, Elegy for the Sublime, 2018. Oil on canvas100h x 110w cm. Courtesy of the artists.