Florence Biennale 2023

Eclectica Contemporary is pleased to present the work of Kenyan artist, Nedia Were at the Florence Biennale 2023. The artist specialises in oil painting and portraiture to engage nuanced notions of blackness and black beauty. This is deployed in the recurring motif of black paint and how the artist meticulously renders the sharp pigmentation of the black skin of his chosen subjects. The subtleties of tonal variation in the human skin is a conscious act of the artist to amplify and question the meaning of black beauty within our contemporary context. In response to the overt absence of the black body in art history, Were places his subjects in natural environments that offers a refreshing representation of the fluidity, growth and rebirth of the African Figure in the realm of portraiture. Through his work, Were hopes to inspire a deeper appreciation for the beauty and diversity of the African figure and to challenge the established ideas of what is considered beautiful in art.

Nedia Were has featured in local and international solo exhibitions with Eclectica Contemporary, Mitochondria Gallery and the Ross-Sutton Gallery. Were has also featured in several group shows both local and international, as well as exhibiting at Cape Town Art Fair, FNB Art Joburg, Art X Lagos and AKAA Paris.

Nedia Were
The Goddesses of the River
Oil on canvas
280 x 180 cm