Eltayeb Dawel Bait (Sudanese, born 1968)
The Spirit of Faces, 2011

signed on wooden frame
(lower right)
mixed media
150 x 150cm
Ksh 680,000–800,000
US$ 7,725–9,100
Sold Ksh 880,500

Provenance: Direct from artist

Eltayeb grew up in Kosti on the White Nile in Sudan, which he left to study at the College of Fine and Applied Arts at the University of Sudan. His studies were interrupted when he was dismissed for political activities and he spent the following years living a nomadic existence in exile, struggling to make a living and continue his artistic practice. For the past few years El Tayeb has been living in Nairobi and is renowned for his inventive use of materials and compelling portraits.

This particular work shows him recycling carpenters boxes and cartons from around the city and etching multiple portraits on their surfaces in a variety of medium. These faces are a commentary on the variety and richness of the people he has encountered and, perhaps, the secrets held within their scratched and etched surfaces.

Eltayeb has exhibited widely including a solo show at TAD Gallery in Rome, 2003; a group show at Ensign Gallery in London in 2004. He exhibited at the Toronto Art Fair in 2006 and Monaco Art Fair in 2010. This year he is completing a large commission for PwC Towers in Nairobi and is part of a group exhibition in Madrid at the Gazzambo Gallery.