Njideka Akunyili Crosby and Akosua Adoma Owusu at Art + Practice

Njideka Akunyili Crosby dwells in the domestic. There is a warmth to her show of new works at Art + Practice, like stepping into a long-familiar living room. Large scale works on paper depict the artist alongside family and friends in poses of comfort and repose. They look directly out of the picture frame with an irrepressible confidence: ‘beautyful’ and proud. As a woman and person of color these politics of representation are not lost on Akunyili Crosby, and it is to be celebrated that her thoughtful representations of non-white persons are currently on display not just in Leimert Park but also at the Hammer’s main building in Westwood.

Akunyili Crosby utilizes a process of Xerox transfer printing to build highly patterned grounds on which she overlays her painterly scenes and portraits. Combining an assortment of material from her personal life in the US, as well as from her homeland of Nigeria, she manipulates a largely Western technique to mimic the rhythms of traditional African textiles, expertly blurring the cultural divide asserted by colonialism.

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