The Artsy Vanguard 2020: Jadé Fadojutimi

Alina Cohen
Sep 11, 2020 8:00PM

Jadé Fadojutimi

B. 1993, London. Lives and works in London.

Jadé Fadojutimi, A point to pointlessness, 2019. © Jadé Fadojutimi 2020. Photo by Eva Herzog. Courtesy of the artist and Pippy Houldsworth Gallery, London.

Jadé Fadojutimi, The Curtain Drops, 2020. © Jadé Fadojutimi 2020. Photo by Eva Herzog. Courtesy of the artist and Pippy Houldsworth Gallery, London.


Jadé Fadojutimi is one of today’s most exciting young abstract painters. The British artist fills her canvases with frenetic brushstrokes and lush palettes that suggest an anxious and very contemporary mindscape. Woe is Eden (2020), for example, features a round, verdant tangle of green brushstrokes, surrounded by dark, ominous swaths of black. Small red nipples and a pair of blue feet protrude from the central mass. Upon further looking, a smirking, coiled snake appears at the bottom left corner. Fadojutimi peppers her paintings with such representational hints—pairs of lips; a wide-brimmed hat; leaves and trees—which offer access points and allegorical meanings that engage viewers.

Collectors, galleries, and institutions are taking notice: Last fall at Frieze London, Fadojutimi’s work garnered commercial attention in Galerie Gisela Capitain’s booth, and in the winter, the Institute of Contemporary Art, Miami acquired a painting by the artist; Tate acquired one in the spring. The young artist is enjoying a solo show at Pippy Houldsworth Gallery in London this September through October, and will have another at Taka Ishii Gallery in Tokyo in 2021—when she’ll also take part in the Liverpool Biennial and mount a solo exhibition at ICA Miami. It’s just a matter of time before the art world shifts its attention from figurative painting to abstraction; Fadojutimi is a bellwether for a pendulum swing, making work that feels fresh and vibrant in a mode that’s overdue for a comeback.

The Artsy Vanguard 2020

The Artsy Vanguard 2020 is our annual list of the most promising artists shaping the future of contemporary art. This year, artists are organized into two categories: Newly Emerging, which presents artists who’ve gained momentum in the past year, showing at leading institutions and galleries; and Getting Their Due, which identifies artists who have persevered for decades, yet only recently received the spotlight they deserve. Now in its third edition, the feature was developed by the Artsy staff, in collaboration with our network of international curators and art professionals. Explore more of The Artsy Vanguard 2020.

Alina Cohen

Header and thumbnail image, from left to right: Jadé Fadojutimi, “Jesture,” 2020. Photo by Eva Herzog; Portrait of Jadé Fadojutimi by Eva Herzog; Jadé Fadojutimi, “I Present Your Royal Highness,” 2018. Photo by Stephen White; Jadé Fadojutimi, “Transmission,” 2020. Photo by Eva Herzog. All images: © Jadé Fadojutimi 2020. Courtesy of the artist and Pippy Houldsworth Gallery, London.