Gideon Appah

Works

Gideon Appah, Day, 2017. Acrylics and paint on canvas, 170 x 178 cm. Copyright of the artist and courtesy Gallery 1957.

 

Gideon Appah is a mixed media artist who draws from personal experiences of life in the capital of Accra. In new works created for 1-54, Appah responds directly to his upbringing, by presenting them in the context of a family setting. The series titled Memoirs Through Pokua’s Window, transforms the booth into Appah’s Grandmother’s house, using old family photo-albums and half-memories as reference material.

Growing up in a large family, the works are reflective of a life characterized by strong emotional bonds, religious activities and folklore. Through nostalgic blues, deep green landscapes and charcoal, his dreamlike compositions place typical domestic interiors from 1980s and 90s Ghana against surreal landscapes.

Pots, stools, lamps, windows, photographs and masks populate Appah’s works, appearing as fragments from inconsistent past. Presented alongside glimpses of nature – plains, trees, plants and particularly rivers – Appah alludes to the organic transformation of memories over time.

Using thick, rough applications of acrylic upon collaged layers of appropriated posters, prints and photographs, Appah directly references his own familial histories. The posters used - advertising haircuts, barber shops and tailoring - relate to occupations of his aunts, uncles and grandparents, the overall result becoming an artistic archive of communal life in Accra.

CV

Born 1987, Ghana

Lives and works in Accra, Ghana

Solo Exhibitions

2019

  • Love Letters, Gallery 1957, Accra, Ghana

2018

  • Memoirs Through Pokua's Window, 1-54 ArtFair, New York, USA

2017

  • In Pokua's Place, Nubuke Foundation, Accra, Ghana
  • Between a life and its dream, ABSA Gallery, Johannesburg, South Africa

2013

  • Sensation, Goethe Institute, Accra, Ghana

Group Exhibitions (selected)

2019

  • Estancia Femsa, Casa Barragan, Mexico

2017

  • African Perspectives, Lars Kristian Bode Gallery, Germany
  • Orderly/Disorderly, Ghana Science Museum, Accra, Ghana

2016

  • Origins and Lineages, DFContemporary Gallery, Capetown, South Africa
  • Kindle, Gallery2, Johannesburg, South Africa
  • Johannesburg Art Fair, Kuenyehia Art Prize, Johannesburg, South Africa
  • Turbine Art Fair, Gallery2, Johannesburg, South Africa

2015

  • Barclays L’atelier Finalists Show, Absa Gallery, Johannesburg, South Africa

2014

  • Artists in Focus, Nubuke Foundation, Accra, Ghana

2012

  • End of Year Show, KNUST Museum, Kumasi, Ghana

Collections

  • Absa Museum, Johannesburg, South Africa
  • Royal Ontario Museum of Art, Canada
  • Private Collections

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