ARTIST: HUMFREY SALIMU
MATERIALS USED: OIL PASTEL, PENCIL and PAPER
The Quarantine didn’t come as a shock, i knew it was inevitable but what i did not know is what the universe had in-store for the weeks to come. We have always found suppressing ones demons, past or unresolved issues call it what you may but in my case i was forced to tackle them head on. This work is a reflection of my thoughts and actions translated in a fantastic abstract way.
With meager savings, a dwindling supply of food rations, rentals and no source of entertainment i was forced to adjust to a new way of living. One meal a day, fasting, sleeping, rereading old novels i had long repeated, “Working Out” and positive affirmations, it wasn’t an easy task till i grew tired of it all.
The second week of quarantine i started having conversations with myself reliving the conversations i had with my family about my sexuality, questioning every life decision i made, compared myself to my successful cousins. Where did i get it wrong? I was branded a black sheep, the weird kid, the chameleon, that girly-boi apparently my mother would have been disappointed. These where the echoes that went through my mind, feelings suppressed to a point i developed multiple personalities but I couldn’t talk to anyone because of fear to be judged and misunderstood.
I have always expressed my emotions through Art, Fashion and Craft but with the whole country under lockdown with no way of moving from point A to Point B my studio and only source of refuge from an unkind world felt like it was light years away.
I took up painting as a way to deal with my isolation, mental health and thus Echoes: Ini, Mina and Me a series of reflections came to be.