By Tajudeen Sowole
When art delves into the study of mental and physical aspects of well-being as artist, Tuodeinye Ogaga's palette attempts, science is dragged into accommodaing artistic perspective to broaden the subject. Ogaga’s collection of painting include mixed media, which expose a wider window and unveil some of his new techniques in a come-back style.
With art analysis of human behaviours titled Motion and Emotions, which opened yesterday showing till March 14, 2016 at Terra Kulture, Victoria Island, Lagos, Ogaga is returning to the art exhibition circuit as a solo artist, after a long time.
Apart from a thematic adventure into the terrain of science, Ogaga's Motion and Emotions explains his experiment with thicker texture of the canvas using, for example, tube tops of acrylic as an embossment that adds quite a freshness to his work. Also, dripping of paint that releases emotive effects on faces of the subjects adds to his new canvas outburst.
Unavoidably portraitures - given the human elements and theme of the exhibition - some of the figures add quite a depth of elegance, perhaps to complement or balance what could have been too academic to digest. For examples Calculative Mood, Reality and Desire and Standing Tall suggest postures from a modeling photographer's studios, yet saying so much about the study in well-being.
Perhaps stressing his passion for the uncommon stray into the subject of well-being, Ogaga has something to share with professionals that study human behaviour. "What most of us do during the day reverberates in dreams at night," the artist tells a select preview guests at Terra Kulture. He adds that movements, generally, affects the way people mould their life, sometimes to either determine progression or stagnation.
Among the dual focus of the exhibition Emotion seems to be more of interest in the artistic rendition of Ogaga compared to Motion. Perhaps, not deliberate, the transmission of the message in works such as The Private Journey Of A Woman, Loud Silence and Emotion series among others suggest that the weight of the concept comes heavier from Emotions.
However, in works such as Strength in Trust and Beyond Limits, the Motion aspect of the theme appears to gain more vigour. More of the movement is particularly felt in Beyond Limits, a powerful display of a lady (dancer?), who seems to be leaping for the reach of her life.
For feminists who passionately hold on to the sentiment that a woman's world of domestic and natural challenges represents unfair treatment of the softer gender, Private Journey Of A Woman helps fuel such emotive stereotype. In fact, Ogaga argues in favour of a woman who, despite all the challenges of keeping family and work together, she still "makes herself presentable or attractive to the husband."
Still on domestic challenges, another series Loud Silence I and II, rendered in stern looking male and female close up captures, and perhaps, offer a tip on how to respond to a partner who would not expiate or admit being on the faulty side of an issue. Homes, Ogaga notes, break when couple struggle with emotions and "there is no communication."
Apart from having his works shown at few appearances of group exhibitions, over the years, solo outing has not been a desperate one for Ogaga. He explains that staying away from exhibition for a long time "is a lesson I learn from master, Abayomi Barber about keeping off when you don't have something new to show."
And returning with three techniques at a single outing as he is currently doing in Motion and Emotions appears like a handfull, isn't it? "Three technique at a time isn't really a problem," he disagrees. Having established his signature on the Lagos art scene, three new techniques at one swoop, he insists would not erode his identity.