* All images used with permission. Please do not distribute without first contacting the artist.
Born in Harlem, NY Kip Omolade began his art career as a graffiti artist while interning at Marvel Comics and The Center for African Art. He continued his studies at The Art Students League of New York and earned a BFA at the School of Visual Arts. His paintings have been featured in exhibitions throughout the East Coast.
Kip explains the work by saying, “My Diovadiova Chrome portraits historically connect to ancient, realistic African sculptures such as Benin ivory masks and Ife bronze heads. The oil paintings are psychological studies that investigate immortality, the universal masks we all wear and contemporary notions of beauty and luxury. The labor-intensive process involves making a mold of each model’s face, reworking the cast plaster sculpture, producing a version in resin and adding a chrome layer with artificial eyelashes. The final sculpture then serves as a model for the hyper-realistic oil painting. This technique maintains the likeness qualities of portraiture while re-presenting a mask that serves as a conduit between the spiritual and natural world.”