Circle Art Auction 2017 Lot 52 Ian Mwesiga

Ian Mwesiga (Ugandan, born 1989)
Black Man in a White Suit, 2016
Signed ‘Ian Mwesiga 2016’ (lower left)
Acrylic on canvas
130 x 150 cm

Ksh 185,000-240,000
(US$ 1,750-2,250)
Sold Ksh 281,760

Provenance: direct from the artist

Ian Mwesiga is a dynamic figurative painter living and working in Kampala. This powerful piece is from a new body of work in which Mwesiga references the aesthetics and sentiments of the Black Arts Movement, considered to be the literary and visual arts wing of the Black Power Movement that emerged in the USA in the 1960s. He utilises this ideological visual language to challenge the ethnographic gaze focused on post-colonial African society by creating striking reflections and proud celebrations of social identity in the context of a highly racialised world.

Mwesiga graduated with a BA in Fine Art from the Margaret Trowell School of Industrial and Fine Arts in 2014. He has undertaken residencies at 32° East, Ugandan Arts Trust, Kampala and Kuona Trust Centre for Visual Arts, Nairobi, both in 2014. His works have been exhibited in a solo exhibition at AKA Gallery Kampala, in 2014 as well as numerous selected group exhibitions including Forward Ever Backward Never, Framer Framed, Amsterdam, 2015, East African Encounters, Circle Art Gallery, Nairobi, 2014, KLA ART 014, Kampala Contemporary Art Festival, 2014 and Moving Africa, Dak’Art Biennale, 2014. Mwesiga participated in the At Work workshop facilitated by Simon Njami and the Asiko Art School in Maputo facilitated by Bisi Silva and CCA Lagos, both in 2015.