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Artists

Esiri Erheriene-Essi

London, England 1982

Esiri Erheriene-Essi, a figurative painter, was born in London in 1982 to Nigerian parents. She currently lives and works in Amsterdam.

Esiri’s works depict scenes of popular life with friends or relatives (such as dinners, afternoon outings and birthday parties), inspired by historical events, personal life experiences and family albums. She is influenced by artists such as Kerry James Marshall, Lynette Yiadom- Boakye, Lucian Freud, Alice Neel and Jean-Michel Basquiat. Among her most significant works, is A scene portraying the migration of African people to the Americas and Europe. This was based on collecting  photographs and other types of documents related to the event. Usually she edits the chosen photograph with Photoshop, makes a sketch with acrylic ink and combines colourful  fabric motifs and magazine fragments. Esiri uses large format canvases (almost human- sized), and inserts very brightly coloured figures of men who lived between the 1950s and 1980s. These scenes are often representations of archive stories never handed down, hidden or forgotten. Esiri has two objectives.  1) to underline the fragmentary nature of history, and 2) to make the viewer reflect on the discrimination of race, a problem that was part of the film industry in the 1950s and 1960s, which did not allow for the nuances of darker skin tones to be captured. For this reason she uses a bright colour range in her works, thus compensating for what had previously been denied.

This Artist’s works are exhibited in the collections in the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, the Institute of Contemporary Art, Miami (ICA), the Ministry of the Interior and Relations of the Kingdom of the Netherlands and the Stedelijk Museum Schiedam.

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Esiri Erheriene-Essi

The Memory Keepers
2023
oil, ink, and xerox transfer on linen
160 x 210 cm

Registered office: Via Caleselle di Oriago, 131/b | 30034 Oriago di Mira (VE) | info@marco-orler.it

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