Artists: Njideka Akunyili and Ruby Onyinyechi Amanze
Curated by Dexter Wimberly
This exhibition features a selection of works on paper by two emerging Nigerian artists working in the US: Njideka Akunyili and Ruby Onyinyechi Amanze. These distinctive, beautiful works blend various media, modes of representation, and images.
Njideka Akunyili was born in Enugu, Nigeria. She is a 2011 MFA graduate of Yale University and received a BA from Swarthmore College in 2004 and a post-baccalaureate certificate from the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts (PAFA) in 2006. Her paintings, characterized by rigorous figuration, explore Akunyili’s complex relationship to both Nigerian and Western culture. Her work has been featured in group exhibitions in New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, and California and is in the collections of the Community College of Philadelphia, Swarthmore College, and the PAFA print department archives. She is currently an artist in residence at the Studio Museum in Harlem.
Ruby Onyinyechi Amanze is an artist of Nigerian birth and British upbringing. Her drawings are greatly influenced by textile processes, printmaking, architecture, and the Japanese philosophy of wabi-sabi, which emphasizes the beauty in that which is transient. Amanze received an MFA from the Cranbrook Academy of Art in 2006 and a BFA from Temple University in 2004. She has exhibited widely in solo and group shows at Please Touch Museum in Philadelphia, Causey Contemporary Gallery and the Front Gallery in Brooklyn, and Amsterdams Grafisch Atelier in the Netherlands. She is currently the director of education at MoCADA in Brooklyn. She is a recipient of a Fulbright Lecturing/Research award for 2012—13.