5 Art Trends to Watch Out For in 2022

09 Jan 2022 | 0 Comments

2022 is going to be a great year! Well, at least let’s hope it’s better than 2021...


In the art world, there’s a huge amount of innovation taking place, and it seems like 2022 might be a bit of a turning point as many things which were bubbling under the surface in the last twelve months or so finally come to the fore.


However, to save you the hassle of trying to keep your eyes peeled yourself to catch the latest trends and fashions that will dominate the art world in 2022 – we’ve put together this list of our top five art world trends for the new year.




You’ll have done well to avoid 2021 without someone asking you ‘what are NFTs all about anyway?”. The technology boomed over the last twelve months and shows no signs of slowing down as we move into 2022.


If you’re still unsure about what Non-Fungible Tokens (NFTs) are, then in the simplest terms they’re digital artworks or artefacts, which are backed by blockchain technology.


This means that for the first time, people can confidently and (relatively) securely take ownership of a digital asset.


For a comprehensive guid to NFTs and a full explanation of their use read our blog ‘NFTs Explained’.


In 2022, you can expect more artists to begin using the technology to sell and promote their work. From big names like Damien Hirst, right through to early-stage amateurs, NFTs have the potential to be a useful tool for artists of all backgrounds.


However, although the boom is certainly going to continue, you can also expect there to be a greater number of controversies surrounding NFTs and their use, distribution, and ownership.


In recent months we’ve already seem examples of the technology exhibiting a few bugs, with people randomly losing their NFTs worth millions of dollars, into the ether. So, you don’t be surprised if confidence in NFTs continues to fluctuate.


However, our top tip for 2022 is to wrap your head around NFT technology as soon as possible. Whether you like it or not, they’re here to stay.


And just as it was the artists who leveraged the power of digital and social media in the last 10 years who have been the most successful - it’ll most likely be those who use these other new technological innovations who come out on top in the roaring 20s!


Public Art


During the last few years, so much of our lives had to move outside. From meeting friends on park benches (if we were allowed) to dining out in the streets and carparks outside our favourite restaurants – we’ve all got a bit more used to having a cool breeze on our face.


As always, the art world is no different. Many galleries and art organisations have spent the last two years putting together cultural programmes that can ride with the proverbial tides of COVID.


As a result, many of these institutions will have been working on extending the reach of their collections beyond their typical four white walls.


Not least will there be an increase in the amount of public art as a result of a variety of nationally and internationally significant events taking place in the UK throughout 2022.


We have the Diamond Jubilee, The Commonwealth Games, and also the festival formerly known as the Festival of Brexit, and then Festival UK* 2022 – UNBOXED: Creativity in the UK.


Each of these events will have large-scale public engagement programmes, many aspects of which will be taking place out in communities and spaces all over the UK – both in and outside of the usual places you might expect to find them.


Big Bright Bold


On a more personal level, if you want to keep up with the latest arty trends in your own home, you might want to consider how you can bring a splash of colour and vibrancy to your walls in 2022.


Many commentators are suggesting that this year will bring about a revival in popularity of the ‘Memphis Style’.


The Memphis style was originally brough about by the work of a group of Italian designers and architects in the 1980s – who wanted to reject modernism and find new ways of engaging with colour and shape in domestic interiors.


A lot of what we now think of as the archetypal 80s look – particularly the more camp elements of it – stemmed from this movement.


So, although pastels and deep-dark colours may have dominated our walls and furniture in recent years, you might want to keep an eye out for something a little more garish as we move into the new year.


Virtual and Augmented Reality


Just as with how galleries and museums have looked beyond their own walls as a means of engaging with people through art in the public realm, they will also continue to expand their use of new technologies such as Augmented and Virtual Reality in 2022.


In 2021, The National Gallery used Augmented Reality to bring to life (at least, that’s one way to put it) George Stubbs’ famous Whistlejacket painting, by allowing visitors to see it through their phones in the form of My Little Pony.


This not only opens-up new ways for the public to engage with artworks... Just think, we might be able to do away with the annoying earpiece-walky-talky-radio-things! But it also indicates that galleries will be able to find innovative new ways of working with other brands to not only make a bit of much needed cash, but also to inspire and engage new audiences along the way.


With regards to Virtual Reality, many galleries have now developed much better digital records of their artworks – should they ever have to close their physical doors again as the result of a further lockdown.


Many big galleries have made sure that you can now ‘walk around’ their spaces virtually - with the use of virtual reality headsets; while many small galleries have developed online-only exhibitions where visitors can do the same.


This is a particularly exciting development as it gives new ways for curators to develop shows, especially in their early careers – in a cost effective and potentially wide-reaching way.


Don’t underestimate either the significance of Mark Zuckerberg’s ‘Meta’ announcement at the end of last year either... Large galleries and Museums with any technological nous will be doing everything they can to get ahead of the game and be the first to establish a presence in the Metaverse.


Just think... You and your avatar mates will all be able to pop into the Meta-politan Museum of Art from the comfort of your own respective living rooms.




Finally - despite Zucks best efforts – TikTok continues to go from strength to strength, and the art world is only going to get more and more heavily involved on the platform over the next year.


There are two main reasons for this – notwithstanding the fact that TikTok is increasingly no longer just a hangout for teenage kids, just as Facebook’s demographic popularity has shifted upwards as its user-base has grown.


Firstly, TikTok is an inherently visual platform, and although music plays an important role in the app, the video content is what is most important.


This is exactly why Instagram used to be so great for artists, because it lent itself to anything that was visually interesting or stimulating.


To the same end, the second reason for the growing popularity of TikTok is that Instagram is no longer a very useful tool for getting your content in front of new eyeballs.


TikTok in contrast allows for much greater organic growth, just as Instagram did a few years back.


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