ruby onyinyechi amanze
How To Butterfly, given "the rate of flow of a fluid, radiant energy, or particles across a given area”
ruby onyinyechi amanze
Swimming in pink gave birth to the moon [when the heart's prisms were beyond enuf]
Smack Mellon is pleased to present STAR FISH: new large-scale, dimensional drawings by ruby onyinyechi amanze. The work is part of an ongoing, non-linear narrative where aliens, hybrids, and ghosts reside in a magical world of constructed realities, memory, and make believe.
Within the drawings, amanze places equal weight on her figures and the spaces they inhabit. Characters fluidly navigate their self-imagined, chimeric universe positioned between nowhere and everywhere. It is a space where land and sea invert, time travel occurs daily, and flying and walking are interchangeable. There is an overlapping, pseudo-collaged aesthetic to her drawings where there is no beginning or end, first or last, present or future. Instead, all the elements come together in a playfully ambiguous now.
ruby onyinyechi amanze (b. 1982, Port-Harcourt, Nigeria) is a Brooklyn-based artist of Nigerian descent and British upbringing whose creative practices and processes focus on producing mixed media, paper-based drawings and works. Her art draws inspiration from photography, textiles, architecture and print-making.
In her approach to art, amanze’s body of work establishes an introspective dialogue and personal quest in an attempt to materialise her experience of displacement and dislocation. The motifs and symbols of amanze’s works create non-linear narratives which articulate and delve into ideas surrounding free play as an act of revolution and post-colonial, non-nationalism as an accepted norm in western societies.
Most recently, amanze completed two-year long residencies at the Queens Museum and as part of the Drawing Center’s Open Sessions Program, both in New York. She has exhibited her work internationally in Lagos, London, Johannesburg and Paris, and nationally at the California African American Museum, the Drawing Center and the Studio Museum of Harlem. In 2019, amanze was named the Deutsche Bank Featured Artist at Frieze New York.
amanze relocated to the United States to study a Bachelor of Fine Art degree at the Tyler School of Art at Temple University in Philadelphia. She graduated summa cum laude and continued her academic career obtaining a Masters degree in Fine Art from the Cranbrook Academy of Art in Michigan. Recognised for her academic excellence, in 2012-2013, amanze was the recipient of the prestigious Fulbright Scholars award and was hosted by the University of Nigeria, Nsukka.
amanze currently resides between Philadelphia and Brooklyn, but calls multiple places home.