THE KAPLAN TWINS
The Kaplan Twins’ (b. 1993, New Jersey) work explores the complexities of today’s celebrity culture and comments on it through the eyes of their millennial generation. Their goal is to create a conversation, while breaking through societal cliches and taboos, and looking at today’s media headlines through a different lens. Working as a duo, they attended NYU graduating in 2015, Allie with a BFA in Fine Art with a concentration in painting, Minor in Art History, and Lexi with a BFA in Fine Art with a concentration in painting. They have shown mainly in Los Angeles, most notably We Rise Gallery, De Re Gallery and the World of Wonder Storefront Gallery, they have also been included in several pop-up exhibitions, and performed a live piece at the Delano Hotel during Art Basel Miami Beach in 2017. In the summer of 2018, they debuted their new series in the hotel lobby of Montauk Beach House, in Montauk NY with Roman Fine Art. They are included in numerous celebrity and private collections worldwide. Their work has been featured in Vanity Fair, Flaunt Magazine, W Magazine, Vice, The Times UK, Teen Vogue, Dujour Mag, Instyle, Playboy, High Snobiety, Elle China among others.
Celebrated for their nude depictions of personalities like Kim Kardashian West, Emily Ratajkowski and Amber Rose, The Kaplan Twins’ latest paintings continue to utilize the quirky, ridiculous and engrossing culture of internet fame while exploring new modes of communication, and the resulting evolution of language and symbolism. Over the past two years, the internet / digital artists have caused quite a stir with their previous bodies of work dubbed “self-aware, ‘sexploitation’ art” by W magazine. In their new series of oil paintings, The Kaplan Twins incorporate witty text, humorous ideograms, and “trendy” objects to pull from popular iconography. Allowing for commentary on “overheard” and “millennial culture”, compositions are driven by ubiquitous social media platforms such as Facebook and Instagram.
Imagery of luxury goods, status icons and emoji eggplants are blown out of scale and paired with colloquialisms derived from sexting, “Swipe Left / Swipe Right” culture. The colorful pieces comment on our current need to keep our Instagram feeds more filtered, more exaggerated, more curated, and “better than yours”.
The Kaplan Twins are not as straightforward as they may initially appear. They encourage us to reconsider the nature of art using their brand of wit, humor, and a dissection of our evolving use of language. Equal parts performative, conceptual, digital, and fine artists The Kaplan Twins can be added to the cannon of emerging Millennial Artists fusing Page Six celebrity, Instagram influencer and wry humor into one. They cite Warhol’s quote “Everyone will be famous” and aim to explore the notion that everyone is looking at the same homogenized imagery for inspiration.