Saturday 3 December 2011


Enter a Ghanaian Pointist in Wiz Portfolio
By Tajudeen Sowole 

(First pulished on Tuesday, October 21, 2008)
 AS the stake is getting higher in the art gallery scene, two organisations have teamed up to give Nigerian art lovers a taste of Ghanaian art.
  The two groups, a Lagos-based art consultant outfit Genesis-1and Vetiva Capital Management Limited have unveiled a Ghanaian artist, Wiz Kudowor whose body of work titled Wiz Portfolio opens on Saturday October 25, at Suite XVIII, Victoria Island, Lagos.
  According the Chief Executive of Vetiva Capital, Joy Eseka, Kudowor is one of Ghana's leading contemporary artists. Introducing the work of the artist during a preview in Lagos, she described it as attracting and pushing beyond fixed spaces and identities in a dynamic search for unrestrained universal truths.
One of the paintings, Musings (2004) by Wiz Kudowor at the Lagos exhbition
The works presented for the preview showed that the artist is an impressionist, though of a bolder kind, as he implores Pointism to create images, largely dominated by human figures and mostly expressed in nude.
   In one of the works titled Profound Embrace II, a graphical expression of a couple whose images are shrouded in the dark ambience of the scene is alive. Another piece, Posing in Blue gives an insight into why one should appreciate the artist's pointism effort as his capture of three ladies look like an image from the lens of an x-ray or infra red light process-shapes are exposed just as outlines of the wears visible.
   Aside nudity, the artist, in Musings proves that he is indeed another master to watch, particular of Pointism, as he has his subject, caught in meditation and surrounded by motifs of different kinds.
  Kudowor who was not present at the preview described his art as reflecting the modern African environment.
 This much he explained in a text he sent to the organizers. "My works are characterized by the dedicated exploration into the dynamic possibilities of the dot, expressing vibrant activity and pure energy with elements, both contemporary and traditional. The use of dots which was inspired by traditional bead work, some twelve years ago has evolved over the years into a different dimension of self-expression which goes to translate my ideas on an African essence concretely.
   "The structure and rhythm of both representational and abstract African symbols - major features of my environment are reference points from which I visualize a whole world of imagery."
Persisttent of Shame (2008) by Wiz

  Like every other artist, the environment, he noted, plays a role in the choice of themes, adding that he is inspired by his roots. "I live in a society where the past still plays an essential role in our daily actions. The past has great significance for humanity even though some have abandoned its essence. It represents experience and roots, protection and great lessons. Its symbolism unfolds to people in various ways and for me it represents a lot of inspiration that manifests in forms and presentations in the society
  "In all these attempts, I strife to satisfy my own whims first hoping eventually to attract mutual minds and interests. There is however room for the viewer to transcend and relate to my work from his or her own perspective. In other words, I expect my works to be prompt and elicit responses from those who come into contact even if negative."
Wiz Kudowor
  Eseka remarked that the artist's ability to exude so much African spirit and beauty with vivacity as well as his brilliant use of color is like a revisit to the days of renaissance masters, adding that with his imagination and a rare ability to incorporate the rhythm of life's simple forms, his pieces are unconventionally striking and excitingly fresh.
  Kudowor's art, it was said, has evolved through the basics at UST- College of Art, Ghana and through numerous exhibitions both at home and abroad since 1981. He holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree, First Class Honors, in Art and received Ghana's Mobil Award for Best Painting in 1981.
  He taught for six years before becoming a full time studio artist in 1988, specializing in painting, sculpture, serigraphy and design.

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