Retro Africa has announced its readiness to showcase Nigerian artist, Ken Nwadiogbu paintings at the upcoming Art Singapore (ART SG).
Retro Africa will showcase Nigerian artist Ken Nwadiogbu in a solo presentation at ART SG.
According to a statement issued in Abuja, ‘for its first participation at ART SG, Retro Africa is delighted to present Journey Mercies: A Migration Symphony, a solo presentation of works by Nigerian artist Ken Nwadiogbu.
Retro Africa founder Dolly Kola-Balogun in the statement said this about Ken Nwadiogbu work.
“His process is more than just a creation it’s a performance, a catharsis, a healing. It interrogates socio political issues and challenges recurring themes that we grapple with regarding belonging and the minority experience which forces us to think through not only the outcome of governmental failure but also its root cause.”
The statement noted that, “Ken’s new body of colourful conceptual works mix hyperrealism with contemporary elements, addressing black representation, identity, displacement, and socio-political control.
“The curated display will be shown at Booth FC28 in the Focus Sector from 19 – 21 January 2024.
It further noted that, “through his work, Ken Nwadiogbu delves into his personal experiences while also offering a social commentary on the experiences of others. Each theme that arises from these experiences play a pivotal role in shaping his creative process.
Ken Nwadiogbu commences his creative process by exploring abstract expression, employing vibrant primary colours such as red, blue, green and yellow.
This colour palette evokes a profound sense of nostalgia, reminding him of home and the emotions associated with it.
“Each painting invites us to immerse ourselves in a world where human figures entangle and submerge within his web of colors, while hyperrealist faces and eyes hand drawn with charcoal, serve as portals to the depths of the souls of the characters depicted.
The bold cadence of colors immerses the viewer in a world teeming with intensity and emotion, mirroring the dynamism of migration.
Central to Nwadiogbu’s artistic narrative are the eyes—the windows to the soul—that hold a particular fascination for the artist.
Nwadiogbu’s paintings will be accompanied by a towering box installation of various colors, adorned with the painted faces of lost, saved, and hopeful migrants.
Standing as silent sentinels, which embody the resilience and indomitable spirit of those on migratory paths, each box becomes a vessel of collective stories, intricately intertwined with the vibrant brushstrokes of hope and longing. Nwadiogbu is credited for introducing the “Contemporealism” movement.
He was awarded the prestigious The Future Awards Africa in recognition of his contributions to the Nigerian arts community.
Notably, his works have graced the prestigious Royal Academy of Art Summer Exhibition in London (2023), a solo exhibition titled ‘Fragments of Reality” at the Kristin Hjellegjerde gallery in collaboration with Retro Africa in London (2023), Thinkspace’s ‘Ubuntu’ exhibition in Los Angeles (2021), the thought-provoking ‘Journey Mercies’ exhibition at the Bomb Factory Art Foundation in London (2021), and the perspective-altering ‘A Different Perspective’ exhibition at Retro Africa in Abuja (2022).
He has also captivated audiences at esteemed events such as Scope Miami, 1-54 London, Prizm Art Fair, and ART X Lagos.
Beyond the canvas Nwadiogbu has engaged in collaborations with esteemed brands including Macmillan Publishers, Martell, Gant and OPPO. Other notable collaborations are an ongoing project with Hospital Rooms and a Netflix project as part of the launch of the 3rd season of Top Boy.
A core focus for Nwadiogbu is to inspire and encourage young creatives through public speaking and mentorship, as well as through his creative collaborations. “Central to this presentation is the power of color, both in its vibrancy and symbolic depth.