Usen Obot

Born 1973 in Port Harcourt, Nigeria. He is of Ibibio descent in the South South geo-political zone in Nigeria. He has participated, developed , implemented and facilitated various art and community development projects. He has exhibited extensively, locally and internationally and his works are private and public collections across the world. He studied Art and Design, Fine and Applied Arts(HND)

ARTIST STATEMENT

My works seeks to interrogate and bring to the fore our inner consciousness that we have or not harnessed to influence our society.

My work has evolved from two dimensional presentations in pen, ink, water colour , oils and acrylic presentations of sites, events, objects, emotions and thoughts to experimentations into common materials. In turn my colours, material and the theme in my recent works have equally changed to reflect and encompass our society’s present state, my experiences and the thinking that I wish to provoke.

In my recent body of work, I have focused on the exploration into the use and combination of common materials such as Clay, leather, fabric, skin, Perspex, metal, glass fibre, etc. These stretches across painting, sculpture, installation and site specific.

My work addresses gender roles, social injustices – xenophobia, racism, exclusion, domestic violence and the dangers that underpins the African society.

SELECTED EXHIBITIONS

2013

April Solo – Ron Belling Art Gallery,Port Elizabeth, South Africa

2012

September: Group – The Bridge To Chicago , Gallery Guichard, Chicago, ILL, USA.

2011

June: Group – 208 Eastern Cape Artists, Athenaeum Building, Port Elizabeth, South Africa.

March: Group – Re-sponse 2– William Humphrey National Art Gallery, Kimberly, South Africa.

2010

October : Group – Re-sponse , Nelson Mandela Metropolitan Art Museum, South Africa

June: Group, Carol Craven Gallery, Massachusetts, U. S. A.

May : Solo: In Living Memory, Red Location Museum, Port Elizabeth, South Africa

2009

August : Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University Diversity Week Exhibition, South Africa

July : Group – Renaissance – EPSAC Gallery, Port Elizabeth, South Africa

2008

November: Solo: The Portfolio, Alliance Francaise, Port Elizabeth, South Africa

August : Group-Carol Craven Gallery , Massachusetts , USA

August : Group- E.P.S.A.C 90th Anniversary Exhibition. Port Elizabeth, South Africa

June ; Group – Beacons – Khune Boekoi Fine Arts Gallery, Port Elizabeth, South Africa

April : Solo: Identity -Gerard Sekoto Gallery, Alliance Francaise. Johannesburg.

2007

November : Solo: Dialogue – Upstairs@Bamboo, Johannesburg

June : Group – 1m x 1m -Cuyler street Gallery, Port Elizabeth, South Africa

May : Studio Exhibition : Metamorphosis, Port Elizabeth, South Africa

April : Solo: Au commencement -Alliance Francaise, Johannesburg

2006

November : Group- E.P.S.A.C Art Gallery , Port Elizabeth, South Africa

October : Group – Transition -Red Location Museum , Port Elizabeth, South Africa

April : Two Man Show- Pace -Cuyler Street Gallery, Port Elizabeth, South Africa

2005

August : Group – Bare Exhibition -Khune Boekooi Fine Art Gallery , Port Elizabeth

July : Solo :- Khune Boekooi Fine Art Gallery , Port Elizabeth

April : Group – Art Expo – Walmer Park , Port Elizabeth

2004

September : Solo Exhibition- Home & Décor Expo Centre , Port Elizabeth

May : Group- Amandla, Reflections of South Africa – Joysmith Gallery,

Memphis ,TN, USA

February : Group- Fusion – Akwa Ibom State , Nigeria

ART/COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT PROJECTS

2010 Coordinator ‐ Telling Our Story 2010 public art project sponsored by the National

Lotto Fund(NDLTF). Beneficiary: Sydenham Primary School, Sydenham,
Port Elizabeth.

‐ Mentor, Menthes/Mentors recruitment,
‐ Project Material Development

2009 Vice Chairman – Eastern Province Society for Arts and Crafts(EPSAC),2008‐2010
Regional Coordinator – Eastern Cape – Speir Contemporary 2010,South Africa’s
Largest national art competition
– Marketing, photographing and documenting artists, Museums
Art Galleries and Community art centres across the Eastern Cape.
Initiator/Coordinator – NEWNOWNEXT project(Emerging Artists development,
Marketing, Exposure and Mentorship) Assisted by B.A.S.A.
– Project Development, Identification of exhibition venues, identification of
Artists, Workshops Coordinator and sourcing for sponsors
2008 Regional Selector: ABSA Atelier – South Africa’s annual visual arts award.
– Member of the Eastern Cape selection panel
Facilitator ‐ National Heritage Project in Partnership with the Eastern Cape
Department of Education

Facilitator ‐ Street Art‐H.I.V. awareness campaign (World AIDS Day), New Brighton ,
Port Elizabeth
2006 Facilitator : Flag making workshop in commemoration of Heritage Day,
Red Location Museum, Port Elizabeth
Initiator/ coordinator ‐ Transition Exhibition(A collective of artists from diverse
Backgrounds)A traveling exhibition that
toured the previously disadvantaged neighbourhoods in the
Nelson Mandela Bay, South Africa
– Project Development, sourcing for sponsorship, coordination

PUBLICATIONS

Re.sponse( ISBN 978-1-920176-82-2) – Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University
Art & Artists of the Eastern Cape, 2011 – Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality
Spier Contemporary 2010 (ISBN 978-0-620-46056-9)