Studio of Gerald Chukwuma, ©the artist, courtesy Gallery 1957, Accra
In a new series of work spanning paintings, sculptures and collage, Chukwuma explores migration as a constant process of transformation and reinvention. Considering the implications of globalisation on his local community, Chukwuma transforms everyday materials to render new stories of Nigeria’s socio-political landscape. The artist draws on the movements of people through voluntary and forced migration as a vital stage in the progress of our collective humanity. This sense of optimism instils his work with playfully illustrative characters, drawn from a wide variety of visual forms present in Nigeria’s deep cultural history.
As one of Nigeria’s fastest rising artists, Gerald Chukwuma’s work explores migration as a constant process of transformation. Considering the implications of globalization on his immediate environment, Chukwuma manipulates common materials to render new stories of Nigeria’s social and political history. In his most recent body of work, the artist focuses on the topic of voluntary and forced migration as vital stages in the development of our collective humanity. Working with discarded objects such as found aluminium sheets and wooden planks, painstakingly etched carvings undergo a laborious process in the artist’s studio. As diversely composed as the various journeys the artist seeks to trace, his carved surfaces reveal a world of figurative and abstract forms characterized by a unique aesthetic language rooted in the Igbo culture of Nigeria’s artistic tradition.
Born: 1973, Nigeria