“My paintings are strongly affected by the training at Nsukka, which is popular for the iconographical symbols of Uli. In a loose way (I prefer to call it a Natural Synthesis), I work my canvas with a personal ‘iconography’. I may add in symbols from Uli or Nsibidi, but more often do not include them for their traditionally accepted meanings. I scribble and scratch and draw with random lines. My figures are also drawn with the same freedom.”
Cattle Stand II, Print, 2016 – 2017, 32 x 20 cm
Tony Nsofor (born 1973) studied Fine Applied Arts at the University of Nigeria, Nsukka and majored in painting in 1997. He has participated in exhibitions for the Nigeria British Council, the
Lagos National Museum and Omenka Gallery, to name a few. As a student in Nsukka, he worked as a studio assistant for Professor Obiora Udechukwu and the experience has had a discernable impact on his artistic journey. He has said that the emphasis on the study of iconographical Uli symbolism, which Nsukka University is known for, still determines his artistic process today. However, he does not use Uli symbols to convey their conventional meaning but rather “scribbles and scratches” them onto the canvas as part of his own contemporary expression. His work is firmly driven by the subconscious and often the story of the work becomes clear to him when he steps back to observe where his process has led him.