Drawing: International Showcase From Lagos to Yogyakarta

Sapar Contemporary presents drawings by artists who now continue their practice under quarantine from Almaty and Yogyakarta to Kuala Lumpur and Lagos. Some of the works showcase their practice in general and some were finished just before the lockdown. For most of these artists, drawing is a critical part of their practice, or in many cases their preferred medium of expression and experimentation.

Among these artists are Phoebe Boswell (Kenya/UK), Uthman Wahaab (Nigeria), Hank Virgona (US), Iwan Effendi (Indonesia), Shinji Turner-Yamamoto (Japan/US), Saule Dyussenbina (Kazakhstan) and Alejandro Megallanes (Mexico). 

  • Phoebe Boswell (Kenya/UK)

    Phoebe Boswell (Kenya/UK)

    Phoebe Boswell lives and works in London.  She grew up in the Arabian Gulf and London, where she studied at Central St Martins and the Slade School of Fine Art. With her own identity composed of transient middle points, opposing colonialities, and passages of migration, Boswell's trajectory involves a diverse toolkit (drawing, moving image, animation, projection, sound, text, interactivity) to form layered, immersive installations to house, centre, decolonise, and amplify voices and histories which, like her own, are often systemically marginalised. 

  • 'As a transnational, multi-disciplinary artist interrogating the complexities of global citizenship, Boswell embraces technology to help navigate various states of...

    "As a transnational, multi-disciplinary artist interrogating the complexities of global citizenship, Boswell embraces technology to help navigate various states of being, becoming, and belonging [...] Even her drawings on paper take on a digital aspect, as the voids she cuts from them come to embody pixels that abandon the image of origin to take refuge in those liminal spaces that characterize diasporic existence."

     

    - Nico Wheadon, The Brooklyn Rail

    • Phoebe Boswell "She Summons An Army", Untitled 19, 2018 Pencil and paper 11 x 16 1/2 in 27.9 x 41.9 cm
      Phoebe Boswell
      "She Summons An Army", Untitled 19, 2018
      Pencil and paper
      11 x 16 1/2 in
      27.9 x 41.9 cm
    • Phoebe Boswell "She Summons an Army", Untitled 2, 2018 Pencil and paper 11 x 14 in 27.9 x 35.6 cm
      Phoebe Boswell
      "She Summons an Army", Untitled 2, 2018
      Pencil and paper
      11 x 14 in
      27.9 x 35.6 cm
    • Phoebe Boswell "She Summons An Army", Untitled 36, 2018 Pencil and paper 9 3/4 x 16 1/2 cm 24.8 x 41.9 in
      Phoebe Boswell
      "She Summons An Army", Untitled 36, 2018
      Pencil and paper
      9 3/4 x 16 1/2 cm
      24.8 x 41.9 in
  • Uthman Wahaab (Nigeria)

    Uthman Wahaab (Nigeria)

    Multidisciplinary artist Uthman Wahaab born in Ilorin, Kwara State, Nigeria and raised in Lagos. He received a degree in Fine Art from the School of Art, Design and Printing, Yaba College of Technology, Lagos.  Wahaab is an artist who possesses an overarching interest in social phenomenon; yet, he is not concerned with a consistent use of medium or even singular aesthetic style. Utilizing the disciplines of painting, graphics design, film, photography, sculpture and installation, Wahaab’s work positions a critical lens at social phenomenon not only within Africa; but also, globally. He is keenly critical of the impact of technology on shifting cultural structures, and the complex conundrum of navigating traditional values and social and economic progress. Each series is an in depth analysis of a new sociological study, and an exciting study manipulating new material. Wahaab’s range in style, medium, and process is vast and impressive; he is an artist who both welcomes and successfully wrangles new ideas and modes of artmaking. Wahaab’s work has been shown internationally to wide acclaim in Africa and Europe. Uthman Wahaab currently works and lives in Lagos

  • '[Wahaab] is concerned with the phenomenon of body image in the modern Nigerian context. Historically, heaviness has been correlated with...

    "[Wahaab] is concerned with the phenomenon of body image in the modern Nigerian context. Historically, heaviness has been correlated with wealth. Wahaab references the Nigerian term ‘Orobo’- a term that loosely means ‘fat in a sexy way’ in the context of marriage. He speaks of an old tradition of ‘plumping’ a bride-to-be prior to her wedding as a demonstration of affluence and comfort. In talking about the work, he speaks of how that tradition is gradually being erased, due in part to the narrowing scope of beauty standards due to social media exposure to contemporary Western beauty ideals."

     

    – Jasmine Wahi, Curator, Co-Director of Project for Empty Space

    • Uthman Wahaab My little tea cup , 2018 Charcoal, pastel, conté and acrylic on canvas 54 x 66 in 137.3 × 168 cm
      Uthman Wahaab
      My little tea cup , 2018
      Charcoal, pastel, conté and acrylic on canvas
      54 x 66 in
      137.3 × 168 cm
    • Uthman Wahaab Espresso lounge, 2017 Drawing, Collage or other Work on Paper 22 x 30 in 55.9 × 76.2 cm
      Uthman Wahaab
      Espresso lounge, 2017
      Drawing, Collage or other Work on Paper
      22 x 30 in
      55.9 × 76.2 cm
    • Uthman Wahaab Checking Feeds, 2017 22 × 30 in 55.9 × 76.2 cm
      Uthman Wahaab
      Checking Feeds, 2017
      22 × 30 in
      55.9 × 76.2 cm
    • Uthman Wahaab, Nude (TV remote #1), 2017
      Uthman Wahaab, Nude (TV remote #1), 2017
    • Uthman Wahaab Sunday morning cigarette, 2017 Drawing, Collage or other Work on Paper 22 × 30 in 55.9 × 76.2 cm
      Uthman Wahaab
      Sunday morning cigarette, 2017
      Drawing, Collage or other Work on Paper
      22 × 30 in
      55.9 × 76.2 cm
    • Uthman Wahaab Cleansing, 2018 Conté, charcoal, and pastel on paper 11 1/2 x 15 in 29.2 x 38.1 cm
      Uthman Wahaab
      Cleansing, 2018
      Conté, charcoal, and pastel on paper
      11 1/2 x 15 in
      29.2 x 38.1 cm
  • Hank Virgona (US)

    Hank Virgona (US)

    Born in Brooklyn, New York, Virgona was first inspired by photography and the work of illustrator Jim Avati. In 1953, after finishing his military service with the U.S. Army, Virgona began working in the commercial art field, eventually winning several awards, including the Gold Medal at the Society of Illustrators.  After giving up commercial work in the late 1960s, Virgona began to concentrate on his own ideas, which gradually evolved into still lifes in which the objects became metaphors for his feelings. Since the early 1970s, he has had over thirty solo exhibitions in the United States. 
     
    Virgona’s work is in the permanent collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY; Museum of the City of New York, NY; New York Public Library, NY; Wichita Museum of Art, KS; Skidmore College Print Collection, Saratoga Springs, NY; Massachusetts Institute of Technology Collections, MA; and others.
    • Hank Virgona The Bishop and his Tribe: Lost in Translation Watercolor on paper 7 3/4 x 9 3/4 in 19.7 x 24.8 cm
      Hank Virgona
      The Bishop and his Tribe: Lost in Translation
      Watercolor on paper
      7 3/4 x 9 3/4 in
      19.7 x 24.8 cm
    • Hank Virgona The Tribe: Parting of the Red Sea Watercolor on paper 10 x 7 3/4 in 25.4 x 19.7 cm
      Hank Virgona
      The Tribe: Parting of the Red Sea
      Watercolor on paper
      10 x 7 3/4 in
      25.4 x 19.7 cm
    • Hank Virgona Blurred Lines, n.d. Watercolor on paper 10 x 8 in 25.4 x 20.3 cm
      Hank Virgona
      Blurred Lines, n.d.
      Watercolor on paper
      10 x 8 in
      25.4 x 20.3 cm
    • Hank Virgona Subway: Waiting at Canal St. , 2014 Watercolor on paper 6 x 8 1/4 in 15.2 x 21 cm
      Hank Virgona
      Subway: Waiting at Canal St. , 2014
      Watercolor on paper
      6 x 8 1/4 in
      15.2 x 21 cm
    • Hank Virgona Subway 37: Attitude , n.d. Watercolor and marker on paper 10 1/4 x 8 in 26 x 20.3 cm
      Hank Virgona
      Subway 37: Attitude , n.d.
      Watercolor and marker on paper
      10 1/4 x 8 in
      26 x 20.3 cm
  • Iwan Effendi (Indonesia)

    Iwan Effendi (Indonesia)

    Iwan Effendi is known for his beautiful, immersive installations that combine drawings, paintings and movable large-scale puppets. The Indonesian art scene has a strong history of theater and puppetry and Effendi is known for his innovative approach to multi-media puppet theater that often references cultural and political histories. Together with his wife Ria Tri Sulistyani he founded the Papermoon Theater in 2007. The first manifestation of their collaboration resulted in a full-scale theater piece, titled The Stain on Mona’s Chest, featuring three main characters. 

    Effendi’s narratives and ideas are generated from his fascination with the fantasy genre, comics, and traditional Indonesian folk lore. He sometimes refers to his style ‘magical realism’ because of their whimsical auras. The facial expressions of his puppets, which are made out of bamboo, nylon and papier-mâché, set the tone for his sets and installations. The puppets come to life by the movement of their handlers who animate the sculpture and become a part of the work.

  • “Effendi intends for each character to portray a unique sincerity and the subtly of his Faces compel the viewer to...

    “Effendi intends for each character to portray a unique sincerity and the subtly of his Faces compel the viewer to look inward. His charcoal, mixed media drawings are so sensitively executed that they seem to emerge from a puncture in the wall. Particularly the mixed-media figures rendered in relief demand our attention. The kinetic puppet’s personas begin as drawings and are created using layers of papier-mâché and clay, to then be delicately mounted on sinewy bodices that are constructed with stockings, bamboo and cloth.”

     

    – John Silvis, Independent Art Advisor and Curator 

     

  • Iwan Effendi, Kid #1, 2020
    • Iwan Effendi His Farewell , 2020 Pigment and charcoal on paper 21 5/8 x 15 3/4 in 55 x 40 cm
      Iwan Effendi
      His Farewell , 2020
      Pigment and charcoal on paper
      21 5/8 x 15 3/4 in
      55 x 40 cm
  • Shinji Turner-Yamamoto (Japan/US)

    Shinji Turner-Yamamoto (Japan/US)

    Shinji Turner-Yamamoto is a Japanese born U.S.-based artist known for paintings, sculptures, and installations employing elemental materials such as trees, fossils, and minerals, creating profound viewer connections with nature. He works with identifiable imagery to encourage humanity to encounter the essential in nature and time in new and unexpected ways and is committed to using historic and natural elements in his work as meditations on the environment. He studied at Kyoto City University of Arts, and, sponsored by the Italian government, at Accademia di Belle Arti, Bologna, where he lived for eleven years.

  • “Through the application of untraditional painterly materials (slag fragments and molten metal), carefully layered fossil and crystal sculptures, abstract canvases, and blown-up photography of microscopic forms, we are presented with a robust and wider view to think about the vastness of all cosmic and universal creation.  In today’s fast-paced and high-tech world, Turner-Yamamoto’s works could not be more timely in reflecting today’s multi-faceted and multi-dimensional ways of looking, and invite a return to nature and meditative close-looking in this moment of chaos.”

     

    – Jacqueline Chao, Senior Curator of Asian Art at the Crow Museum of Asian Art

  • Shinji Turner-Yamamoto, Sidereal Silence: Irish Study #37
  • Saule Dyussenbina (Kazakhstan)

    Saule Dyussenbina (Kazakhstan)

    Saule Dyussenbina is a Kazakh multimedia artist known for her whimsical revisions of Western art history and humorous inserts of Central Asian culture, Asian female artists and herself into the male dominated Western canon. In her pantings, watercolors, prints and animations she addresses feminism, urbanism, Central Asian identity, and the role of the artist through the prism of her nomadic heritage. Notable recent exhibitions include "Post-Nomadic Mind" at the Wapping Project, London (2018), "Postcolonial Art in Central Asia" at the Gedok Gallery in Karlsruhe (2018), "Eurasian Utopia: Post Scriptum" at Suwon Park Museum of Art, South Korea (2018), and "Kultureller Dialog in Eurasien" in Vienna, Austria (2019).

  • "Dyussenbina’s prints, resembling the two-tone prints on a British tea set, provide interesting provocations: What if the naked guy in Leonardo’s “The Measure of Man” or Van Gogh in his self-portraits wore traditional Kazakh garb? Whimsical, the ludic nature of Dyussenbina’s work in fact belies a daringness to ask hard questions about the contingencies and absurdities of art history."

     

    – Marisa Moran Jahn, faculty at MIT and The New School 

    • Saule Dyussenbina Gothic Ornament , 2021 Print, edition 16 x 16 in 40.6 x 40.6 cm
      Saule Dyussenbina
      Gothic Ornament , 2021
      Print, edition
      16 x 16 in
      40.6 x 40.6 cm
    • Saule Dyussenbina Objective Ornament, 2021 Print, edition 16 x 16 in 40.6 x 40.6 in
      Saule Dyussenbina
      Objective Ornament, 2021
      Print, edition
      16 x 16 in
      40.6 x 40.6 in
    • Saule Dyussenbina Athletic Ornament, 2021 Print, edition 16 x 16 in 40.6 x 40.6 cm
      Saule Dyussenbina
      Athletic Ornament, 2021
      Print, edition
      16 x 16 in
      40.6 x 40.6 cm
    • Saule Dyussenbina Floral Ornament, 2021 Print, edition 16 x 16 in 40.6 x 40.6 cm
      Saule Dyussenbina
      Floral Ornament, 2021
      Print, edition
      16 x 16 in
      40.6 x 40.6 cm
    • Saule Dyussenbina Geraldic Ornament, 2021 Print, edition 16 x 16 in 40.6 x 40.6 cm
      Saule Dyussenbina
      Geraldic Ornament, 2021
      Print, edition
      16 x 16 in
      40.6 x 40.6 cm
    • Saule Dyussenbina Celebratory Ornament, New York edition, 2020 Print, edition 1/3 15 3/4 x 15 3/4 in 40 x 40 cm
      Saule Dyussenbina
      Celebratory Ornament, New York edition, 2020
      Print, edition 1/3
      15 3/4 x 15 3/4 in
      40 x 40 cm
  • Installation from New Mythologies of Central Asia, Sapar Contemporary, 2020
  • Anya Zholud

    Anya Zholud

    Anya Zholud (Russia) is a well-known Russian contemporary artist. Zholud has shown in major institutional venues in Russian and abroad. Before she turned 35, she had solo shows at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Moscow, Moscow Museum of Modern Art, and State Russian Museum, St. Petersburg. She has participated in the main Pavilion of the Venice Biennale in 2009, and exhibited at the Garage in Moscow. She graduated from St. Petersburg Art College and the St. Petersburg State Academy of Applied Art and Design.

    Her work is in the collections of Moscow Museum of Modern Art, Private Contemporary Art Museum in Moscow, National Centre for Contemporary Arts, Museum of Non-conformist Art in St. Petersburg, State Hermitage Museum, State Russian Museum, Tretyakov Gallery.  She was nominated three times, 2007, 2009 and 2012 —for the All-Russia «Innovation» prize in the sphere of contemporary art, and nominated for the Kandinsky Prize.

  • Zholud is a celebrated Russian artist who works in a tradition of Russian writers and artists who wrestled with the...

    Zholud is a celebrated Russian artist who works in a tradition of Russian writers and

    artists who wrestled with the notion of byt, which means extremely basic everyday life

    in Russian, but cannot be translated by a single word in other European languages.

    Daily life, quotidian existence, material culture, private life, domestic life: all of these

    various shades of meaning are present in the term. In her wire sculptures and

    paintings, Zholud creates an outline of material life around her, making it physically

    present and at the same time transparent. Zholud, who lives in isolation in a rural area

    outside of Moscow, often struggles with depression, originally referred to these works

    as “outlines of basic happiness.” She turns her everyday reality into a schematic bare

    drawing, and a drawing into an wire installation, a ghost or a dream of the object. The

    artist often speaks about looking for a scheme or an outline of happiness in every

    object around her. She created inventories of objects of her byt: cups, pots, lamps,

    shoes, chairs, benches… they are like a vocabulary for her poetry.