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Lynette Yiadom-Boakye Imagines Lush Black Bodies In 'The Love Within'

British-Ghanaian artist Lynette Yiadom-Boakye imagines lush black bodies in 'The Love Within' at Jack Shainman Gallery in New York City.

Images via Jack Shainman Gallery


The Love Within is a solo exhibition of recent works by British-Ghanaian painter, poet and writer Lynette Yiadom-Boakye currently on display at New York's Jack Shainman Gallery. This new show is the artist's third at Jack Shainman following 2010's Essays and Documents and 2012's All Manner of Needs. Yiadom-Boakye's oil paintings represent a mix of large and small-scale scenes that predominantly portray black figures in medias res. The candid nature of each portrait leaves the artistic narrative open to the viewer's interpretation and conveys a sense of intimacy aptly summed up by the show's title.

Yiadom-Boakye's unidentified subjects represent an amalgamation of traits stored in her artistic palette, and her paintings inhabit a nebulous space which allows for a very improvisational technique. In a video interview (below) conducted at the 55th Venice Biennale, Yiadom-Boakye shed some insight into the sources of her inspiration, saying "I work from scrapbooks. I work from drawings. I work from imagination. It's a combination of all of those things so what I arrive at is not traced to any particular one source."

Born in London in 1977 to Ghanaian parents, Yiadom-Boakye trained at Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design, Falmouth College of Arts and the Royal Academy Schools. She was shortlisted for the prestigious Turner Prize in 2013 and has had her work exhibited in France, Italy, South Korea, and Ukraine. Click through our gallery above for a preview of The Love Within.

The Love Within is now on display at both Jack Shainman locations (513 W 20th St. & 524 W 24th St.) and continues through January 10, 2015.

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How the Beautifully Black Art of Lynette Yiadom-Boakye Inspired Solange’s ‘A Seat At The Table’

British-Ghanaian painter Lynette Yiadom-Boakye has emerged as one of the biggest influences on Solange’s new album, ‘A Seat At The Table’

The list of collaborators and influences on Solange’s new album, A Seat at the Table, runs deep through the African diaspora. From the Sierra Leonean-rooted Sampha and Blood Orange to Ethiopian-American singer Kelela, British-Ghanaian producer/singer Kwes, Nigerian producer and Metronomy member Olugbenga, Ghanaian-American singer Moses Sumney and a number of others, the diaspora has a strong and notable presence on the Saint Heron founder’s first official project since 2012’s True EP.

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14 Cultural Events You Can't Miss this December in South Africa

OkayAfrica's guide to must-see events during South Africa's festive season.

South Africans will tell you that December is not just a month, it's an entire lifestyle. From beginning to end, it's about being immersed in a ton of activity with friends and family as well as any new folk you meet along the way. Whether you're looking to turn up to some good music or watch some provocative theater, our guide to just 14 cultural events happening in South Africa this December, has something for everyone.

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Photo by Lana Haroun

From #FeesMustFall to #BlueforSudan: OkayAfrica's Guide to a Decade of African Hashtag Activism

The 2010s saw protest movements across the continent embrace social media in their quest to make change.

The Internet and its persistent, attention-seeking child, Social Media has changed the way we live, think and interact on a daily basis. But as this decade comes to a close, we want to highlight the ways in which people have merged digital technology, social media and ingenuity to fight for change using one of the world's newest and most potent devices—the hashtag.

What used to simply be the "pound sign," the beginning of a tic-tac-toe game or what you'd have to enter when interacting with an automated telephone service, the hashtag has become a vital aspect of the digital sphere operating with both form and function. What began in 2007 as a metadata tag used to categorize and group content on social media, the term 'hashtag' has now grown to refer to memes (#GeraraHere), movements (#AmINext), events (#InsertFriendsWeddingHere) and is often used in everyday conversation ("That situation was hashtag awkward").

The power of the hashtag in the mobility of people and ideas truly came to light during the #ArabSpring, which began one year into the new decade. As Tunisia kicked off a revolution against oppressive regimes that spread throughout North Africa and the Middle East, Twitter, Instagram and Facebook played a crucial role in the development and progress of the movements. The hashtag, however, helped for activists, journalists and supporters of causes. It not only helped to source information quickly, but it also acted as a way to create a motto, a war cry, that could spread farther and faster than protestors own voices and faster than a broadcasted news cycle. As The Guardian wrote in 2016, "At times during 2011, the term Arab Spring became interchangeable with 'Twitter uprising' or 'Facebook revolution,' as global media tried to make sense of what was going on."

From there, the hashtag grew to be omnipresent in modern society. It has given us global news, as well as strong comedic relief and continues to play a crucial role in our lives. As the decade comes to a close, here are some of the most impactful hashtags from Africans and for Africans that used the medium well.

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