Nengi Omuku: A State of Mind

Nengi Omuku: A State of Mind

From March 21 to April 8, 2015, the Omenka Gallery will present A State of Mind, an exhibition featuring 17 remarkable paintings by emerging Nigerian artist, Nengi Omuku.

Born in 1987, Nengi Omuku is an exceptional painter and sculptor whose oeuvre consists largely of a series of self portraits that document her strongly personal journey or escape across several energy levels as various expressions, bounded only by the law of energy conservation.

Nengi obtained her BA at the prestigious Slade School of Fine Art, University College London (UCL), and has won several awards including the Prankerd Joney Memorial Prize.

In 2012 and the Nancy Balfour MA Scholarship in 2011, both awarded by the UCL. She has also won the British Council CHOGM art award, presented by HRH Queen Elizabeth II in 2003.

Through color, Omuku explores the supposition that the human figure can be transformed based on the premise that things could not only look, but also be otherwise. The release from the physical form has led her into a new territory, a moment-by-moment expression of beings that have been transformed from their present reality and reanimated through color and marks. It is her desire to convey portraits: presences floating through active spaces, presences that have the aspiration of becoming events in their own right. She also frequently explores the encounter – what happens when different forms meet. Another element of her work is the scape, in particular, the escape the bodies inhabit.

Since Nengi’s solo exhibition titled To Figure an Encounter, Open the Gate, London in 2011, featuring paintings in her new-found abstract style, she has participated in group shows such as Deep Cuts, Last Measures, 2011, at Stephen Lawrence Gallery, Greenwich, Surplus to Requirement, 2011, at Slade Research Centre, UCL and The Next 50 Years, 2014, by the Society of Nigerian Artists at the Omenka Gallery, Lagos.


Oliver Enwonwu is founder and Editor-in-Chief of Omenka magazine, Director, Omenka Gallery and Chief Executive, Revilo. He holds a first degree in Biochemistry, advanced diploma in Exploration Geophysics (distinction), Post Graduate Diplomas in Applied Geophysics and Visual Art (distinction) and a Masters in Art History, all from the University of Lagos. He is the founder, Executive Director, and trustee of The Ben Enwonwu Foundation. He also sits on the board of several organizations including the National Gallery of Art, Nigeria and the Reproduction Rights Society of Nigeria. Enwonwu is also president of both the Society of Nigerian Artists and the Alliance of Nigerian Art Galleries.

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