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Omar Ba: State of Emergency - Hales Gallery

Omar Ba, Afrique, Afrique, Afrique, 2014, oil, gouache, ink and pencil on corrugated carton, 190 x 143 cm.

Exhibition preview

HALES Gallery has announced its first solo exhibition with Senegalese artist Omar Ba. Entitled State of Emergency, it will be on display from September 3 to October 4, 2014.

Having lived both in Senegal and Switzerland, Omar Ba’s works combine memories of his motherland with experiences of his current home in Geneva.

Ba predominantly makes paintings directly onto corrugated cardboard sheets, the artists preferred surface. His relocation from Dakar to Geneva has had a major effect on his work bringing together both African and Western influences often centred around single figures, isolated on blackened surfaces.

The highly patterned and elaborate paintings draw together imagery associated with famine, tribal decoration, factional warfare and despotic self-styled leaders, along with advances in new technology and popular culture.

These almost mythological, ‘folklore’ inspired beings are not void of Western influences which serve as a nod to Postmodernity and the culture of ‘now’.

Omar Ba (b. Senegal, 1977) received his formal education in both Senegal (l’Ecole Nationale des Beaux-arts, Senegal, 2002) and Switzerland (l’Ecole Sup√©rieur des Beaux-arts, Geneva, 2005 and ECAVMAPS Arts in Public Spheres, 2011). Selected exhibitions include: Biennale de Dakar (Dakar, Senegal, 2014), Vitalic (Hales Gallery, London, UK, 2013), La Jeunesse est un art (Manor Kunstpreis, Aagauer Kunsthaus, Aarau, Switzerland, 2012), Swiss Art Awards (Bale, Switzerland), and others.

In 2011, Ba received the prestigious Swiss Art Award. 2014 saw the publication of The Prophecy of the People of Durban/La Prophetie des Gens de Durban, the artist’s most recent catalogue. Ba’s works can be found in private and public collections, including Credit Suisse, Fonds municipal d’art contemporain de la Ville de Geneve, Fonds municipal d’art contemporain de la Ville de Paris, Centre national des arts plastiques, France, and others.

Ba lives and works in Geneva, Switzerland.

Opening Times: Wednesday to Saturday, 11am – 6pm; or by appointment.

Hales Gallery, Tea Building, 7 Bethnal Green Road, London, E1 6LA