Onyis Martin (Kenyan, born 1987)
Recollections, 2017
Mixed media on canvas
180.7 x 150.2 cm
Ksh 300,000 – 500,000
(US$) 3,200 – 5,200
Provenance: Direct from the artist

Sold Ksh 328,720

Onyis Martin is Nairobi-based artist working in painting, sculpture, installation and, more recently, video. Martin’s work focuses on contemporary urban environments and the way these spaces are shaped by the politics of ownership and access, movement and displacement, and how they contain some form of collective memory.

Recollections (2017) came out of Martin’s ongoing interest in the surface of urban walls. This work is an unusual and distinctive painting and was originally included in Kikulacho, an exhibition at the British Institute in East Africa. It explores our relationship with food; using stenciled patterns as a shorthand for upmarket cafes and restaurants which are increasingly becoming a feature of Nairobi’s urban landscape.

Martin has exhibited in Kenya and Ethiopia as well as the Absa Gallery, South Africa in 2018 and the Kerry Parker Civic Gallery, Adelaide, Australia in 2018. He has participated in residencies at the Bag Factory, Johannesburg in 2017, Asiko Art School in 2016, The Factory in Lamu in 2016, Ostrale in Germany in 2015 and he won first merit in the 2017 ABSA L’Atelier Award. He had his first institutional exhibition in 2019, taking part in Still Here Tomorrow to High Five You Yesterday, a group exhibition at Zeitz MoCAA in Cape Town, South Africa.