Serges Arthur Aboua

Born 1981 in Anyama, Ivory Coast Lives and works in Abidjan, Ivory Coast

The artist Serges Arthur Aboua, born in Anyama, a village near the economic capital Abidjan, dedicates his works to the beauty of his home country. In 2006, the same year of his graduation from ENBA (École Nationale des Beaux-Arts) in Abidjan, he exhibited his works at the Municipal Museum of Contemporary Art in Abidjan. Aboua has long been an insider tip in the local art scene in Ivory Coast and can be spotted in many private collections. The artist's oeuvre is characterised by his outstanding painterly skills and his wide range of themes.

His work is guided by the traditional culture, to which he is very much connected. Everyday scenes as well as urban and rural landscapes serve Aboua as inspiration for his colourful figurative and abstract compositions and portraits. Characteristic for his painting technique is a virtuoso brushstroke, a subtle mixture of colours and the direct application of paint on the canvas. In some works, he sometimes uses everyday materials (newspaper clippings, cardboard, fabric, beads, pagne, etc.). Employing these objects in his artworks he draws from the local tradition, as everyday objects were often used to produce works of art, but at the same time, he references the influential artistic movements of the XX century - Dada and Pop Art, while his other works reveal his interest in more classical works of Turner and Monet.

In his works, Aboua utilizes an impressionist approach, which is often associated with the beauty of nature to display the beauty and culture of his home country and its urban settings, thus deconstructing the often erroneous association that there is only war, violence and poverty in Africa. His works also reflect the political and social discourse; a generation that is proud of its origins and a state that has found new self-confidence. He directs his attention to groups that make the existence of the society possible, for example showing the brutal, heart-breaking but also powerfully beautiful routine of the nurses’ work and thus reflecting on subjects which are of the utmost importance in the times we are living today.

Biography / CV