The Artist

Amoako Boafo is a painter, born in Accra, Ghana, based in Vienna, Austria.

Boafo’s portrait paintings are enticing in their lucidity, accentuating the figures in each work, who are regularly isolated on single color backgrounds, their gaze the focal point of each work.  The brushstrokes are thick and gestural, the contours of the body’s almost soften into abstraction. The most well-known of his series, the Black Diaspora portraits serve as a means of celebration of his identity and Blackness.

Boafo emphasizes, “The primary idea of my practice is representation, documenting, celebrating and showing new ways to approach blackness.” Much of his work is inspired by his upbringing, commenting on how males are raised to be aggressive and masculine, which he challenges in his works. Although the artists underlying messages are quite intense, there is a certain softness to the works as a whole, the poses are serene and the skin luminous.

Boafo studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna. In 2017 he received the jury-awarded Walter Koschatzky Art Prize. His work has been widely shown in private and public collections such as the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and CCS Bard College Hessel Museum of Art in New York; The Albertina Museum Vienna, and the Rubell Museum in Miami. The Mariane Ibrahim Gallery in Chicago, which represents the artist, will hold Amoako Boafo’s first solo exhibition, entitled “I Stand by me," from September 10th to October 24th, 2020.

Photo credit - Francis Kokoroko