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Details & Cataloguing

Modern and Contemporary African Art

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London

Ben Osaghae
1962 – 2017
IN BROTHERHOOD WE STAND
signed and dated 2000 (lower right)
oil on canvas
210 by 90cm., 82¾ by 35¾in.
Painted in 2000
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Provenance

Acquired directly from the artist by the present owner in 2000

Catalogue Note

Osaghae is celebrated as one of the most prominent artists in post-independence Nigeria. This work, made during the later period of Osaghae’s artistic production, exemplifies his signature techniques of bold coloured backgrounds, blurred subjects, and an energetic force of emotion.

In this untitled painting, the red background is compelling in emphasizing the emotions of grief, anger, and passion conveyed by the subjects. Here, the illustrated figures are positioned with their heads bowed down, and crouched knees. As a consistent theme in his body of work, Osaghae addressed topics of institutional corruption and injustice in Nigeria.

In his online obituary, Jess Castellote writes, 'No other Nigerian artist was able to portray so vividly the liveliness, complexity and vibrancy of Lagos life. Sometimes this was done just through a small “vignette” with one of two characters; other times it is a whole tableau of the city’s inhabitants. But it was always done with the confidence and self-assurance of a visual chronicler that happened to be an extraordinary draughtsman'.

Modern and Contemporary African Art

|
London