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Details & Cataloguing

Modern and Contemporary African Art

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London

Uzo Egonu
1931 - 1996
ARTIST PAINTING MOTHER AND CHILD
signed and dated 1978 (lower right)
oil on canvas
123 by 152cm., 48½ by 60in.
Painted in 1978
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Catalogue Note

Artist painting mother and child is a later work by Nigerian artist Uzo Egonu, painted during a period of physical and emotional agony. His partial blindness and deteriorating health prompted an introspective examination of his life. Stylistically, this painting is formed of abstract inspired bold patterns, simple linear detail, and broad flat areas.

A painting of an artist live-painting a mother who caresses her young child, this work is a personal reflection on Egonu’s short relationship which his mother. Egonu moved to England as a 13 year old boy when his father, an affluent British colonial civil servant, sent him to a private school (as most wealthy Nigerian families did at the time).

Decades afterwards, in the later part of Egonu’s life, he painted this work amidst a period of anxiety when he was occupied with questions of nation and identity. These thoughts formed the conceptual foundation for the ‘Stateless People’ series, in which this painting belongs.

Modern and Contemporary African Art

|
London