Take a Look at the Future of African Contemporary Art With Victor Ubah

Based in Lagos, Nigeria, Victor Ubah is the embodiment of Contemporary Cubism and  Afrofuturism, as he explores the inner workings of his subjects’ identities as a key driver in his work. Through these figurative, mainly two dimensional compositions, what stands out is the abstraction in the space where the subject’s skin is visible. The Artist generates the figure through an assemblage of geometric polygons that do the work of presenting the viewer with an intentional request to look things in different perspectives. What’s more, the component of the brightly colored and timeless garments worn by each of the subjects adds a level of complexity and sophistication to the works. The artist has appeared in several group exhibitions mainly in Lagos, and is quickly growing in the roster of promising African Contemporary artists. Read below to learn about Victor Ubah, his upbringing, and his unique style. 

Orange Dress, 2020, Acrylic on Canvas, 21 x 23 cm, Courtesy of the Artist

Tell us a little bit about yourself. Where are you from and how did art first come into your life?

My name is Victor Ubah from Nigeria. I’m based in Lagos, Nigeria. My first contact with art was when I was a kid. I loved drawing comic characters and decided to create my own characters. I feel it made me more confident about art and the journey. 

Black Dress and Scarf, 2020, Acrylic on Canvas, 117 x 147 cm, Courtesy of the Artist

Has your work always taken on the style it currently embodies?

I became a cubist painter in 2019. 

Brown Coat and Yellow, 2020, Acrylic on Canvas, 117 x 147 cm, Courtesy of the Artist

What is your process like? How do you begin a work?

I begin my art from imagination then drawing out my reference and the canvas then I start to paint.

From where do you draw inspiration?

My inspiration is sometimes from my friends or models, basically good reference photos. 

My Space, 2020, Acrylic on Canvas, 109 x 138 cm, Courtesy of the Artist

Tell us about your relationship with portraiture. 

Portraiture makes it easier to relate and to easily narrate what I’m trying to paint. 

My Favorite Purple Chair, 2020, Acrylic on Canvas, Courtesy of the Artist

If you could have a dinner with three major figures, dead or alive, who would they be? 

That would be Basquiat, Andy Warhol, and George Condo. 

Shade and Green Scarf, 2020, Acrylic on Canvas, 78 x 116 cm, Courtesy of the Artist

Does your work reference any Art Historical movements?

No not really but kind of in a way.