(Watercolour painting), by Ini Brown.
ONE of the most prolific watercolourists in Africa, Ini Brown returns to the mainstream art appreciation circuit with a solo exhibition titled Moods & Habits: Recent Masterpieces, showing from June 30-July 2, 2022 at Creative Arts & Visual Centre, 30 Agadez Crescent, Wuse 2, Abuja, FCT.
The artist's last major show was in a group titled The Content”, an exhibition of watercolour masters held in Lagos, in the spring of 2018.
Brown disclosed how he tried to use his sight, which he described as rare ability to capture and appreciate particular expressions, moments, and attitudes of light that make his paintings truly great. "I have long mastered the art of watercolor," he boasted, noting that there is something about his watercolours that attracts wide interest. "I find the everyday life of the ordinary people endlessly interesting, making me to produce vividly painted scenes from my experiences."
Among the works for the exhibition is 'Shades of Colour' (acrylic on canvas, 48× 36inches), a painting described as post-impressionist, depicting commercial spot with all kinds of people converging to carry out their endeavours. Brown uses bright and intense colours to invoke heat, sunshine, warmth and dynamism. The colours, he argued, are not necessarily common, but applied to capture the mood. "There is freedom in the brush strokes to convey the essence rather than the details." Also on the list of over 20 pieces is The Phone Message (watercolour, 22 x 30inches), in which the artist recalled that he needed to communicate the women's intense engagement with the phone.
Excerpts from In Brown's Artist Statement; "The way the medium responds as I direct it to my subjects is magical. The ability to bring the moods to these subjects are breathtaking. There is no time for hesitation as I place each brush strokes. The medium has its own character, requiring instantaneous control and that it's the beauty and magic.
"Things happen when the colors meet wet-in-wet, dry, and wet, that are unexplainable. And in the hands as a master watercolorist, its beauties and the joy of the emotions are a visual feast to enjoy.
"Enjoy how the lights shoot out of the brushstrokes of colors and shines back. Very hypnotic."
Well renowned as a master watercolourist, Ini Brown has been known to show a high proficiency with Oil and Acrylic mediums. In the last two decades or more, he has proven to be one of the most prolific and versatile watercolorist, practicing in Africa. His unique technique in the dramatic use of colors is spectacular and awe-inspiring as is his creativity, originality, and intimidating dexterity.
In his career, Brown has had over 20 solo and group exhibitions, across in Nigeria, South Africa, United States, Sweden, England, France and Germany. One of his more recent and popular exhibition was “The Content”, a group art exhibition of watercolour masters in the spring of 2018, organized by Mrs Modupe Ogunlesi-led Adam and Eve, GRA, Ikeja, Lagos. The exhibition, curated by Lekan Onabanjo was unveiled by His Imperial Magesty, the Ooni of Ife, Oba Enitan Adeyeye Ogunwusi, Ojaja II.
Brown received First Class Honors from the Federal Polytechnic Auchi, Edo State, Nigeria, where he trained formally as an artist.
Ini Brown's work has been documented in quite a number of books, including Artists of Nigeria, by Onyema offoedu-Okeke, a Ford Foundation Publication and an international publication, For Art’s Sake, A selection from The Yinka Fisher Collection, by Foundation for Contemporary & Modern Visual Art; and A Who's Who and Bibliography African Art, Smithsonian Institute, Washington DC, United States of America, USA.
His subject matter is the daily lives of those in his immediate environment. He depicts the diverse peoples and landscapes of Africa, as well as their destinies and circumstances. With his brushstrokes, that are almost next to his skin he reflects their daily life aspirations, hopes, struggles, and despairs. Ini's paintings continue to captivate private and corporate collectors worldwide.