Wednesday, June 17, 2009

The Spirit of Merchandise, 12" x 12", acrylic on canvas board, 2009

This my entry in Karin Juricks DSFDF, the reference was a tray of vegetables, something to depict harvest. But when I saw those crops the first thing that came to my mind was Africa and its market places. African Markets are the most colourful places to behold. There is life, energy, colour and vitality. The noise of the hawkers ans sellers will wake anyone from the dead!

I know in this part of the world it is seen as child abuse when children sell in market places but in Africa it is a matter of survival, not that I support it, but I remember having to sell some soft drinks and ice fruit drinks for my mum. I had to carry it around on my head and sound the call for customers to buy them!



So, in a bid to reconstruct something I recall from Africa, I have used this challenge to depict the spirit of merchandise. This piece is titled thus, because sometimes the markets run till late and everyone seems to never give up or go home until their goods are sold. Traders would even reduce the prices of the goods by half at those late moments just to have something to show for a hard days work.

I have used my son Josh as the model here and I have painted this with acrylics with a slow dry medium to help me work and blend while the work was in progress. His contemplative face could be all that captures one of the passers by or people willing to buy and they might just purchase his goods out of pity! The style used here is more of expressionism, not paying attention to details but just using my brushstrokes as calligraphic marks to depict my feelings for the scene. I wanted to capture that buzz of feeling in such places while using Josh as the focal point to tie the whole piece together.

28 comments:

Ann Rogers said...

Wow, wow, wow...this is the winner! Really dynamic painting, although I'm not sure how those Georgia vegetables ended up in Africa!

Congratulations on your beautiful new daughter!

adebanji said...

Thanks Ann, you just need to book a trip to anywhere in Africa, most likely West Africa, and you'll be surprised to see those vegetables in abundance!

Nithya Swaminathan said...

What a fabulous interpretation, as always. It is awesome you create a scene out of a simple reference. :)

adebanji said...

Thanks Nithya!

Jala Pfaff said...

Very cool what you did w/just a reference photo.

Lesley Spanos Art said...

Seeing your DSFDF painting revealed is one of my favorite parts of every challenge. This one's a stunner, like all the rest. I love the energy of those calligraphic brushstrokes.

adebanji said...

Thanks Jala and Lesley!

Vern Schwarz said...

I didn't think you would see what the rest of us saw in this challenge photo. I love the bits of colour popping out everywhere creating energy and excitement in this story. Very beautifully done.

adebanji said...

Thanks Vern!

AC said...

This is very nice.
Again the background idea was very good: I like this expressionist style.

adebanji said...

Thanks AC!

Priti said...

Outstanding work, love your version of this challenge- shows your passion for art.

adebanji said...

Thanks Priti!

Dana Cooper Fine Art said...

It's been said before but...WOW...this blows me away!!

Tj Lev said...

Wow... you really took this challenge to a different level. Wonderful! Beautiful! Emotional!

Mark Bridges said...

You've done a nice painting here. when i was a kid, i had a stick with a nail in the end to pick up trash for my job. Thanks for stopping by my blog,

Carol Horzempa said...

This is my absolute favorite! It takes special talent to create a story around a simple reference photo like you did, Adebanji.

Congratulations on your beautiful new baby girl! I love your beautiful sensitive drawings of her.

Diane Morgan said...

Your interpretations from Karin's photos are always amazing. Wonderful work....especially with the personal connection. Love it!

adebanji said...

Thanks Dana, Tj, Mark, Carol and Diane!

artbyakiko said...

Great depiction!!! I just love it.

Edward Burton said...

Beautiful piece, Adebanji - very poignant.

adebanji said...

Thanks Akiko and Edward!

Dean H. said...

Wonderful work, Adebanji! You have certainly materialized the buzz and color of an African market for us to all see...Now that's what I call sharing your artistic vision!!

adebanji said...

Thanks Dean!

James Parker said...

And when I saw this piece, I was absolutely floored. You have excelled once again, Banji, In creating a true work of art. My compliments through the roof. I know situations and countries are different, but when you mentioned rough times in Africa, it caused me to think of "What is the What", which I just finished reading. Keep up the magnificent stroking.

dominique eichi said...

I love it ! I do wait in wonder as to what you will be creating with our challenge photos. You don't stop amazing us. Maybe one day that should be the challenge of Karin. You captured Josh' expression so well, of not really wanting to be there but doing it anyway. Humbleness is always hard to learn. BEAUTIFUL.

adebanji said...

Thanks James and Dominique your comments are VERY POWERFUL-I'm inspired!!!

Africantapestry and Myfrenchkitchen said...

Beautiful work...loaded with mood!
ronelle