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00s Fever: 10 of Our Favourite Noughties Artists
The artists of the 2000s were our first introductions to the world of contemporary art.....
Feature 26 Apr 2022

Avril Lavigne is releasing new music, Ben Affleck and JLO are engaged, low-rise jeans are cool again and so are thin eyebrows. We are in the midst of a full-blown 00’s comeback. We hear some of you cheering – some of you sobbing.

For us millennial and early Gen-Z babies, the artists of the 2000s were our first introductions to the world of contemporary art, and are forever firm favourites.

We’ve been looking back on the fantastic decade of Pop Punk, enormous iPods, and Juicy tracksuits and have chosen a selection of our favourite female artists making a splash in the 2000s.

Ellen Altfest

photo by phaidon.com

American realist painter Ellen Altfest captures the human body and vegetation from unique, cropped perspectives. Her compositions which are “awkward and go against what might be considered pleasing” were building in popularity through the first decade of the 21st Century.

Julie Mehretu

photo by artnews

Julie Mehretu’s large-scale deeply-layered abstract paintings were making a big splash in the 00s. The Ethiopian-American artist was named one of Time’s 100 Most Influential People in 2020.

Lisa Yuskavage

photo by wcc.art

Lisa Yuskavage’s saucy portraits were making a big impact in the noughties, and she sold out her solo show in New York before its doors even opened. Her work is closely tied to the history of nude painting and marks the return of figurative painting in contemporary art.

Tanja Ostojić

photo by berlinartlink.com

Ostojić rose to international fame following her 2005 poster ‘EU panties’ which satirically referenced the work of Gustave Courbet. The Yugoslavian-born artist takes a critical view at European politics in her performances and posters.

Marlene Dumas

South African artist Marlene Dumas captures intense emotions in her water-y portraits. Dumas’ art explores what it means to be “masculine” or “feminine” which was an ever more public discussion in 2000s.

Tania Bruguera

photo by art21

Performance and installation artist Tania Bruguera was born in Havana and addresses Cuban politics, power, and control in her work. Her 2008 performance Tatlin’s Whisper #5 in London’s Tate Modern was a huge hit.

Sarah Lucas

photos by tate

Probably the most famous name on our list, English artist Sarah Lucas’s sculptural and photography practice is synonymous with the British art scene of the late 90s and early 00s. She said of her work “art is like having a nail file and being in prison and trying to get out”.

Doris Salcedo

Columbian artist Doris Salcedo’s work deals with issues of political unrest, immigration, and metamorphosis. In 2007, she was the 8th artist to be commissioned to create work in the Tate Modern Turbine Hall, for which she created a 167-meter long crack Shibboleth through the space.

Teresa Margolles

Investigating conflict, death, and dying in her work, Mexican artist Teresa Margolles originally trained as a forensic pathologist and creates her work from a studio in a morgue.

Cornelia Parker

photo by The Artist Project

Another famous name, sculptor and installation artist Cornelia Parker created some of her most well-known and celebrated work in the 1990s and 2000s. She received an OBE in 2010, and three honorary degrees through the noughties.

Author: Verity Babbs

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