YBA (Young British Artists)

YBA (Young British Artists)

‘Young British Artists’ (YBA) is a loosely-affiliated group of British artists from 1988, known for shock tactics and openness to materials.

The YBA gained recognition for their openness to materials and processes, as well as their use of shock tactics and entrepreneurial approach to art. The YBAs played a significant role in the contemporary art scene in the UK during the late 20th century.

The inception of Young British Art can be traced back to the 1988 exhibition 'Freeze,' organised by Damien Hirst, who would go on to become one of the most celebrated and notorious figures among the YBAs. Hirst curated 'Freeze' while still a student at Goldsmiths College of Art. The exhibition showcased the work of his fellow Goldsmiths students, many of whom later emerged as leading artists associated with the YBAs, including Sarah Lucas, Angus Fairhurst, and Michael Landy.

Goldsmiths College of Art played a pivotal role in shaping the movement, with its courses fostering new forms of creativity by eliminating traditional distinctions between media such as painting, sculpture, and printmaking. Michael Craig-Martin, one of the college's influential teachers, played a significant role in the development of the YBAs.

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Parra's studio, with Parra at the centre, his back to the camera as he works on the large painting takes centre stage, showing a faceless blue woman in a striped dress, painted in red, purple, blue and teal. The studio is full of brightly coloured paints, with a large window on the right and a patterned rug across the floor under the painting.