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Through Art Market & You, Art From Us provides you with Analysis, Opinion and Factual Reports regarding the current on-goings of the Global Art Market. In this article, we explore Art in the Age of Coronavirus.

Art From Us and Divvya Nirula present reports from the international art market with the view to assist our collectors, investors, and all lovers of art.

Art in Society

Since time immemorial art has acted as a kind of record-keeper of society. Even cavemen rendered drawings of their daily life onto rocks. We have always believed that art is influenced by societal, political and economic forces, just as it, in turn, has the power to influence these.

Since the outbreak of the novel strain of Coronavirus in December 2019, the world has seen a shift in the very definition of normalcy. And the art world has not been unaffected.

In the midst of museum closures, auction postponements and event cancellations, many artists have taken an opportunity to return to what they know best – creating powerful art. As the world lives through this historic time, battling to even survive, these artists are creating a time-capsule of sorts through their work.

There have been many artistic reactions to the coronavirus. Here, Art From Us brings you our list of top 3 interesting works.

1. Tommy Fung

Tom Fund, Untitled (2020)
Image Courtesy : artist’s instagram

Humorously dubbed, Nowadays when you see someone coughing and not wearing a mask, this work captures raw fear and panic. We see bustling street full of people wearing face masks. The central subject of the image is a man with monster-like tentacles for a face. The tentacles most likely are a visual reference to the virus itself, which looks ‘crown like’ (hence the name corona). Other passers-by stare at this man – some accusingly, and others fearfully, as he walks on without a mask. The image is particularly powerful as the virus is known to spread either through contact or respiratory droplets. Thus demanding that people wear masks when they go out in public.

2. Danielle Baskin & Max Hawkinstake on Coronavirus

The artist duo has created an app service called QuarantineChat. The aim is simple. People from around the world that are in isolation can talk to each other through the in-app video interface. Keeping in touch with loved ones. Or even just talking to a stranger for that matter, seems to be the need to the hour. As governments have imposed strict lockdowns across the globe and social distancing has become the order of the day, this ‘artwork’ hopes to bridge the social gap.

3. Jilly Ballistic and Plannedalism

Artwork by Jilly Ballistic & Plannedalism
Image Courtesy : The Guardian

‘SPREAD NO VIRUS’ signs are scrawled all over New York city, courtesy Ballistic and Plannedalism. The one shown here was photographed at the Lower East Side in Manhattan. What is perhaps most earie about the image is the artists’ decision to write these words just outside a closed gate. It reminds us that ‘social distancing’ – or in more frightening words, not stepping out of our houses and meeting our loved ones – is the only way to stop the spread of coronavirus.


Meme by Unknown Artist
Image from Instagram

We must say, we love the new identity art takes on in the age of social media. As society changes, with it changes the context of how we look at art. So, as an added bonus and to lighten the mood, we present to you – Mona Lisa on vacation.

Admittedly, this ‘artwork’ was created originally as a meme, by an unknown creator, well before the spread of the corona pandemic. But in light of the current scenario, it takes on an interesting new context. The image depicts La Jaconde with her feet up, sitting back in a chair with a relaxed posture. The image presents a commentary on the worldwide museum closures and changes brought about to the art world calendar, owing to the disease.

To read more on facts and opinions, visit Art Market & You.

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