Kelechi Charles Nwaneri | Nigeria
“My work is born out of the desire to stir up conversations on issues around Social values, History, mental Health, and the subconscious interaction between man and his environment.”
Nwaneri Kelechi Charles was born in 1994 in Nigeria and currently lives and works in Lagos, Nigeria.
Inspired by Pencil Artists such as Kelvin Okafor, Arinze Stanley, and Ken Nwadiogbu, he initially focused on Pencil Realism and has evolved introducing other mediums such as acrylic paints, collages, watercolors, and oil paints.
Kelechi’s style stands between Photorealism, Surrealism, and Postmodernism but perfectly fits into what he defined Contemporary Surrealism. Inspired by events happening in his daily environment, he creates art with surrealistic imagery. A major characteristic of his work is the use of West-African Iconography, mystical, metaphysical, allegorical concepts, and the Black Hybrid Figure, inspired by the idea of scars and African Tribal Marks.
As he says “A major feature of my work is the “Hybrid (Black) Figure inspired by the idea of scars and tribal marks. These figures are usually embedded with symbols (including mainly Adinkra, Uli, Nsibidi symbols), Automatic Lines, and Adire patterns using primarily Pencils and Charcoal sticks.”
In 2020, he was the resident artist at AKKA Project, Venice, Italy.
Selected solo exhibitions:
Myths, Kristin Hjellegjerde Gallery, Berlin, Germany
Modern Marks at Ebony Curated, Cape Town, South Africa
Selected group exhibitions:
Art Dubai, Gate Building, Dubai International Financial Centre, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Stop, Listen! CFHILL Stockholm, Sweden
Doors, Eyes and Tribal Marks AKKA Project, Dubai
Latitude Art fair online, Ebony Curated, online edition
1:54 New York, online edition
All the Days and Nights, Kristin Hjellegjerde Gallery, London, UK
STASIS, SMO Contemporary Art Gallery, Temple Muse, Victoria Island Lagos, Nigeria
SECRET GARDEN, ODA Gallery, Franschhoek, Western Cape, South Africa
Ode to mankind, Artyrama Gallery, CFAO building, Victoria Island, Lagos, Nigeria
Spanish Festivals and traditional celebrations, Thought Pyramids Gallery, Maitama, Abuja, Nigeria
Exploring the Goldmine Inherent in Nigerian Creative Industries, National Festival for Art and Culture (NAFEST), Ibom Hall, Uyo, Nigeria.
Africa First Collection, Tel Aviv Israel
Embassy of Spain Abuja, Nigeria
Beth Rudin DeWoody Collection, USA