Michelangelo.  Caravaggio.  Rembrandt.  Monet.  Picasso.  Okay, yeah, Warhol too.  Maybe.

I could go on and on, but you catch my drift.  All we need to do is mention  one name and they’re instantly recognizable.

They were super-gifted and some think as close to being super-human or perhaps supernaturally talented as a mere human being can be.

They blazed the trail and led the way not only for millions of artists who would follow, but also creativity-seeking people throughout history.  But here’s the rub …

They’re DEAD … and therefore, that makes them safe bets.  Sure, they can still pack museums and rake in tens of millions of dollars at auction.  They’ve even bought themselves a certain kind of life extension.

Their truth is real, but the real truth remains.  They can’t create any more work.  We consider ourselves brilliant for falling in line and basking in their brilliance, but isn’t that more like investing in a sure thing?  Isn’t it like walking on the safe side of the street or better yet, swimming in a wading pool with a lifejacket on?  It’s almost like taking a chance by calling the sky, “Blue.”

I love them all, but for me, I want a little RISK.  Actually, I want a LOT of risk. Let’s step out on a limb and name names.  Let’s point fingers and single out those who can use a hand up.

Note to art world:  Let’s really start supporting the unknown … or relatively unknown.  It’s SO EASY to appear as if you’re knowledgeable about art when you’re at an art social and you throw around the most recognizable names.

“Have you seen the de Kooning show at MOMA? It’s fab!”  “I’m going to the Picasso show at the Met.  Are you going?”

You can count me among the attendees.  I would never turn down a Picasso show. But here’s my point. It’s beyond passé.  It’s as old as the dirt that those artists – whom I totally respect – are buried beneath.  The practice of practically worshipping dead artists is like being a toddler stuck in the oral-anal phase of psychological development.  Yes, let’s continue to honor them, but …

Can we ALSO move ON?

Let’s roll the dice, stick our necks out and take a bungee jump for some kick-ass, LIVING artists, shall we?  Let’s take a risk.

Okay, I’ll go first.  In fact, I’ll do it more than once.  I’ll do it ten times … no … 10 times 10.  I’ll do it 100 times … plus SIX.

Ready?  Here we go … Check it out ...

106 Super Hot Artists For 2013.