Plain Magazine The Way We Were Exhibition

Editors, Plain Magazine, March 10, 2020
Celebrated Nigerian artist Oluwole Omofemi pays tribute to the emotional, personal and cultural significance of hair in The Way We Were: an arresting series of portraits of black women of all ages proudly sporting their hairstyles.

Omofemi’s work reflects on the rise of the Afrocentric pride during the post-colonial era. The natural hair movement boomed during the Civil Rights Movement 1960s and ‘70s, encouraging black people to forgo European hairstyles for their afros, hair braids and hair wraps. A somber, palliative aesthetic envelops each oil and acrylic portrait, the moodiness and darkness comparable to the works of the Old Masters. But his subject’s eyes shine proudly, and their hair – wild and free – stand as metaphors of freedom.

Omofemi turned his humble beginnings into a story of triumph. After graduating from the Polytechnic of Ibadan, his amazing works earned him an exhibit at Nigeria’s National Museum. His artworks have since been shown around Lagos, Italy, Belgium and GhanaThe Way We Were is the debut exhibition of the Signature African Art gallery’s London branch, opening on March 11, 2020.