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Saturday, December 11, 2010

Profiles in Cool/Power-a- the artist: Wale Lawal

artist ( är t st)

1. One, such as a painter, sculptor, or writer, who is able by virtue of imagination and talent or skill to create works of aesthetic value, especially in the fine arts.
2. A person whose work shows exceptional creative ability or skill: You are an artist in the kitchen.
3. One, such as an actor or singer, who works in the performing arts.
4. One who is adept at an activity, especially one involving trickery or deceit: a con artist.

"Art to me is something that very few people in the world truly appreciate. Hence, it doesn’t baffle me that people still wonder why people would go through the risk of trying to steal “Van Goghs” and “Manets” or annoy me slightly when people regard a piece as ugly; those people are simply less educated.

It’s definitely not natural, (After all, none of my parents can even draw a straight line); I don’t consider being able to draw and paint a talent per se, rather its something you learn with annoying rules which you “should” abandon later. That’s the difference between Warhol and road side art; if you do your research you will learn which is more valuable.

It is greatly about pushing boundaries, its theme is heresy; if you can imagine how I felt the first day I had to draw a live naked woman, try to imagine how I felt trying to draw a naked man for the first time, especially being the only boy in those two scenarios.

However, if you look at it from the models’ point of view you realize that at that moment not only is it moral but also a sign of maturity that you should disrobe yourself of all worldliness and become an instrument to relay the beauty that you observe. So if the model had quite small breasts, I would draw it as I saw with no hesitation or shyness (and the same rule applied with the men), showing them the final piece with pride realizing later that the connection between a model and his/her artist is unparalleled in any other field.

Until a few years ago, I don’t think my parents realized that I wasn’t looking at art as a profession (I am an economist at heart), rather I just enjoyed the way it made me understand things; the way it made me more intelligent and I still do.

My pieces portray classical beauty and would fit under Renaissance in terms of genre so they are quite anachronistic because classical beauty in art died with the victorian period. The zeitgeist of la fin de la siècle is what my pieces would be known as nowadays."

'Senescence' as the name suggests is a drawing not just of an old man but of old age itself. I am biased towards old age; I never see it as a graceful transition so the prominence of the rough lines should come as no surprise.

'The eye of Ophelia' - Readers of Shakespeare’s Hamlet are fully aware of the tragic death of Ophelia; she drowned. However, as she drifts deep into the darkness of the river, peaceful in death, her last glance at the world, she has been captured in drawing.

'Fifi the Blue Macaw'- Birds are very hard to draw I tell you that! Not only are they extremely restless, their feathers have such repetitive patterns that one could easily get lost in them.
The greatest difficulty would be not drawing human eyes.

'Life Drawing'- I have chosen to show only my drawings of females simply because females are more beautiful. Where the male’s beauty has been clustered by muscle, the female possesses serenity, curvature and not to mention a beaut iful face.

'Pedro the Parrot'- This was one of my final pieces for my final Art A level exam and one of the hardest drawings I have ever done. It took me 7 hours to draw non stop, and I was drawing the parrot form life. But for an A* in Art A levels it was worth it!

'Aghogho Nmuo'- One of my early pieces; inspired by Ben Enwuonwu and the Igbo Culture. I find that they seem to have more interesting masks than any other Nigeria culture. I have encountered many buyers for this piece but I haven’t sold it. This was my first “good” painting and I am a puppet to the strings of emotional attachment.

These paintings are good but they are not genius. Modern Art contains the genius artists of our time which is why my next few paintings will have more to do with modern Art than classical beauty.


  1. My goodness...I don't see how this is just a hobby or just interest to you. Excuse me if I show this to my mother who likes to know what ex Corona students are up to.

  2. Busola Bubu OmogbejaDecember 11, 2010 at 1:17 PM

    love life drawing.....captivating....and interesting.....also wanna be a writer someday....u inspire me.....hehehehe...kip it up....@Mzbubu

  3. yhh yhh thats my bro waleee, :)

  4. Are you kidding me, I just finished cussing up a strom where I am cuz of how amazing these things are, I would love to be as talented as this.

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