We asked several of our friends and contributors for the artists they’ll be paying close attention to in the new year. When we put the question to longtime art dealer Alberto Mugrabi, he simply replied:
“I will be watching Lucien Smith because he brings me sunshine in the rain.”
Though he’s only 24, Smith will have a lot to live up to in 2014—his brief two-year career since graduating from Cooper Union has seen him mount solo exhibitions at several top U.S. galleries (including Suzanne Geiss, Salon 94, and OHWOW). Mugrabi isn’t alone in his selection either: David Zwirner has similarly called Smith an artist to watch, and Forbes named him one of their “30 Under 30” at the end of last year. His process-oriented paintings and prints are hot market commodities already—in fact, a work he made while still in graduate school headlined Phillips’s contemporary auction last month.