Evans Mbugua - Mon Statut d'Homme Libre - 2020 - 100x100cm - Oil on plexiglass & Photopaper
Evento finalizado
sep 2020
oct 2020


Cuándo: 11 sep de 2020 - 18 oct de 2020
Inauguración: 12 sep de 2020 / 20 - 22 h.
Horario: Viernes, sábado y domingo de las 11 a las 14h y de las 18 a las 20.30h - Lunes de las 11 a las 14h, jueves de las 18 a las 20.30h. Martes y miércoles con cita previa.
Dónde: Out of Africa Gallery / Carrer Nou, 1 / Sitges, Barcelona, España
Comisariada por: Sorella Acosta
Organizada por: Out of Africa gallery
Artistas participantes: Emeka Udemba, Evans Mbugua
Enlaces oficiales Web  Blog  Twitter 
Teléfonos: +34 618 356 351
Correo electrónico: sorella@outofafricagallery.com
Publicada el 31 ago de 2020      Vista 53 veces

Descripción de la Exposición

We are so proud to announce our next duo show "Freedom is mine" in OOA Gallery Barcelona with recent artwork by Kenyan artist Evans MBUGUA and Nigerian artist Emeka UDEMBA. Today we present you Evans colourful universe, full of energy and joy of living. FREEDOM IS MINE by Sylvain Sankalé Born in Nairobi in 1979 and after obtaining his Bachelor of Arts degree in 1997, Evans Mbugua decided to continue his studies in France, a surprising destination for a student from an English-speaking African country. After graduating from the University of Toulouse, he enrolled at the l'École Supérieure d'Art des Pyrénées (Upper School of Art of the Pyrenees) and obtained a graphic design degree in 2005. While at the same time starting a professional career as an art director in a communications agency in Toulouse, MBUGUA continued to explore the field of visual arts in his personal studio. In 2011 he decided to go to Paris, where he has devoted all of his time to artistic exploration and design. Mbugua has exhibited his work in prestigious institutions and events all over the world. It is his colorful universe, full of energy and the joy of living, that he shares with everyone who knows how to appreciate his work and there are many! His work has been shown in Europe, the United States and in his home continent, from Morocco to the South African Republic. He has participated in many contemporary art fairs, including some of the most famous fairs dedicated to contemporary African art (principally 1.54 London and AKAA Paris). Additionally, some of his works have been sold in specialized sales of large auction houses in Paris and Cape Town. Now Evans MBUGUA is reaching his maturity and his work has gained in confidence, as clearly demonstrated in the most recent evolution of his work! The series dedicated to body talk summarizes his concerns revolving around human beings, be they man or woman. In great, highly colorful compositions, Evans depicts the encounters, exchanges, identities and ways of being in his interest in understanding human beings and their many facets. Very carefully created backgrounds bring to mind the artist’s design activity, reproducing the regular motifs of the multicolored fabrics that we find all over Africa. Even footprints are cleverly fused into the plot while at the same time evoking the march and above all the dance. He detaches, through the use of pointillism, great moving characters that invade the canvas and give it a vitality that contrasts vigorously with the very neutral and uniform, though colorful background. The contrast of vivid colors that, in their antagonistic treatment (linear traces against pointillism, the reproduction of similar motifs against moving characters…), wonderfully animates the work. The techniques in these paintings link painting on plexiglass with digital printing on paper. This painting is fresh, showing a dynamic Africa in motion, a positive Africa that immediately provokes the desire to love it! For the artist, dance is a universal language. It allows the transmission of expressions of joy, peace, excitement, tension, weight, space, rhythm and flexibility. However, the artist sows several riddles into the work of which he alone possesses the exact answer. While we can venture explanations, they will not necessarily match his. But isn't it the role of the “observer” to appropriate the work and make it say what they want it to say or understand? Why do the models wear dark glasses? Through the use of this artifice we are left to consider what dark secret lies behind. Why does the artist try to remove the particular identities of the models? Is it to show that these portraits are not what immortalize youth, in all its forms, regardless of if they are two specifically identified models. There are certain messages, beyond the aesthetic beauty that hook us immediately, that go further and that we have to learn to decipher, because obviously it is not just a combination of technical skills, that of the dancers and the artist that represents them. The dancers are black, but they are contemporary and "globalized," as evidenced by their hairstyles, the costumes and accessories that they wear, and there is nothing to attribute them to a nationality, an ethnic group, a country, all these symbols of borders, of isolation and conflict. They represent Africa as a whole and its transcendent unity. In contrast to the clichés in use, it’s an energetic Africa, not that of the postcards of dancers in their straw rags and ornaments from another era, but a modern, carefree and complete Africa. Evans Mbugua makes us want to be happy and optimistic about this continent that we most often represent more in its dramatic turmoil and its deadly contortions, neither of which should be denied. He brings us hope and joy of life and deserves our recognition as such! Sylvain Sankalé Art Critic Dakar, Senegal Seeing is Believing by Paul Laster Captivated by creativity ever since he was a teenager helping his photographer father to hand-colorize his black-and-white pictures, Nigerian artist Emeka Udemba was destined to be an artist. Acquiring a broad background in artistic practices while studying art education at the University of Lagos, he landed a solo show with his work at the Goethe Institute shortly after graduating. The exhibition was a success, in that he not only sold his first works of art to local collectors but the cultural center’s director was so taken with his work and disposition that she suggested he move to Germany and helped him settle in Freiburg, a university city in the Black Forest that’s known for its comfortable climate. His next big break came when he was invited to exhibit work in a group show about artists from Africa and its diaspora at the Haus der Kulturen der Welt in Berlin. But it was his installation art piece about immigration, which won the French Ambassador’s Prize at the 2002 Dakar Biennale, that set him on his way for further successful shows across Europe, Africa and Latin America. Working with installation art, photography, performance art, video and painting, Udemba soon established a career in Europe and then founded an art space in Lagos to support younger artists. In 2013, he started making his signature style portrait paintings with added elements of colorful, transparent collage. Appropriating anonymous images of refugees and impoverished people found on the Internet, Udemba gives prominence to these subjects by portraying their inner beauty while surrounding them with swirls of colored papers and mediated information that’s usually used to define them. “It’s not about creating realistic portraits of my subjects,” the artist shared by phone from his Freiburg studio. “I view my paintings more as constructions, where I employ print material to make the viewer go beyond just looking at the person in the painting. I want the viewer to see the information swirling around us so that they can understand how it impacts the way we define other people.” Realism is secondary in his constructions. His work is more investigative; it’s more about the questioning of identity. He’s creating a psychological situation, in which fragments are consciously placed, particularly around mouths and ears—as though he’s exclaiming that much is being said and heard on a daily basis, but that you have to discern what is meaningful. Udemba’s ennobled figures, such as the two boys depicted in the 2019 painting Translation 2, seem distanced or removed from reality. The artist has envisioned them in a floating space, where there is no discrimination. He’s interested in the idea of an endless space—a borderless space that’s not defined by where you belong by outside forces. They are free to occupy a space in which they can be who they want to be, as the female figure daringly does in his 2020 painting Angel. “My figures are in a space that has no demarcation,” Udemba added during the phone conversation. “They have all of these pieces of paper with information floating around them. It’s a space for speculation. It’s full of ideas that can be seized. The figures are free to think what they want to think. They inhabit spaces that have little or no constraints.” Beyond the humanist ideology conveyed in the work, Udemba’s paintings are also fascinating in the highly inventive way in which they are made. The artist begins each painting by covering the canvas with layers of newsprint to give it texture, but instead of applying the paint with brushes he uses pieces of recycled plastic that he cuts to size to make a desired mark. A thin piece of plastic is used to outline the figures, while larger bits of plastic are used like a palette knife to lay down bands of transparent color. Once the figures are set on the canvas, he covers them with thin pieces of colored paper (some that he has painted himself to get the palette that he wants) and slices of random texts culled from newspapers, brochures and advertisements that he picks up during his travels. Veiled in a blizzard of information, his people are nearly invisible, which is the plight of the immigrant, who can seem invisible to some even as they try to sometimes make themselves invisible to all in order to avoid trouble. His 2019 painting Maverick No. 1, which captures the bust of a compelling black man in a storm of colors and facts, could be seen as a surrogate self-portrait. Universally speaking to the immigrant experience, it depicts a non-conformist—a man who wants to be himself rather than seeing himself through the eyes of others. He’s a man who sees beauty as humanity, as treating people with dignity. “I want my work to create a space for education, for enlightenment, for discussion,” Udemba further stated from Freiburg. “If my work can stimulate conversations about how we relate to one another, I’d see it as a success.” Paul Laster New York Desk Editor|ArtAsiaPacific Contributing Editor|Whitehot Magazine of Contemporary Art Writer|Time Out New York|Galerie|Art & Object|Sculpture|Cultured|Harper's Bazaar Arabia|Architectural Digest|Surface|Garage|ConceptualFineArts


el 10 sep de 2020

¡Suscríbase y reciba regularmente nuestro Boletín de Noticias del Mercado del Arte!