Public Art | Temporary Installation
Presented by the Moody Center for the Arts, an installation of Victor Ekpuk’s work is on view at the Susanne M. Glasscock School of Continuing Studies at Rice University from June 1 – 30, 2023. Organized in conjunction with the biennial meeting of the Society of Africanist Archaeologists, held at Rice University, the installation is comprised of three newly designed large-scale banners and two sculptures.
The exhibition is supported by the Center for African and African-American Studies at Rice.
About the Artist
Victor Ekpuk (b. 1964, Nigeria) is an internationally-renowned Nigerian-American artist based in Washington, D.C. In his paintings, drawings, and sculptures, he employs glyphs that are inspired by the aesthetics of indigenous African writing rituals, such as the ancient Nigerian communication system Nsibidi, as well as graphic symbols drawn from global contemporary culture. Over the last few years, Ekpuk has increasingly focused on the connection between the past and present, exploring this relationship in large-scale murals, installations, and public art projects.
“My work engages with a diverse spectrum of meaning, often mining historical narratives, the contemporary African diaspora, and humanity’s connection to the sacred.'" said Ekpuk. "I am very interested in anthropology, I want my works to be starting points for dialogue, new discoveries into the differences and commonalities among cultures. Whether I am mining writing systems or just exploring the juxtapositions between the ancient and the contemporary—these excavations are important to my work."
Ekpuk has been included in various exhibitions, notably at the Princeton University Art Museum; The Tang Museum; Hood Museum; Fowler Museum; Museum of Art and Design; Newark Museum; Smithsonian National Museum of African Art; Institut du Monde Arabe, Paris; 12th Havana Biennial; Dakar Biennial; and the 1st Johannesburg Biennial, among others. His works are represented in numerous collections including the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, and the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art, Washington D.C.; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MA; Kiran Nadar Museum of Art, New Delhi, India; Hood Museum, Hanover, NH; Krannert Art Museum, Champaign, IL; Newark Museum, NJ, and various others.