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Possibilities by Ishmael Armarh is his first exhibition at Galerie Ron Mandos. It is the result of a collaboration with the Noldor Residency, Ghana’s first independent artist residency and fellowship program for contemporary African artists on the continent as well as in the Diaspora. Armarh (GH, 1986) is the 2022 Visiting Fellow at the Noldor Residency in Accra, Ghana. The Noldor Residency is happy to confirm that he will be continuing his tenure as their 2023 Junior Fellow officially.
Queen Mother, 2022 | Acrylic on Canvas | 170 x 130 cm
Dialogue: Western gaze & African identity
Armarh’s work is about the constant dialogue between the Western gaze and the heterogeneous African identity. He seeks to explore this dialogue through references to traditional Ghanaian textile and contemporary forms of fashion. These motives are incorporated into his practice through a distinctive use of bright colors and pointillistic brushstrokes.
It is a deep desire of the artist to reimagine Black existence from an emancipated viewpoint. Whether his figures are in tribal regalia, be it as an Ashanti chief in gold or a local acquaintance in a neoclassical suit wearing a 1970s Dior Masai necklace, his subjects embrace their freedom. Possibilities by Ishmael Armarh comprises a body of work that is aspirational, which is reflected in the very opulence Armarh is depicting in his subjects.
The Tribal Bride, 2022 | Acrylic on Canvas | 100 x 100 cm
About the artist
Ishmael Armarh (b.1986) is an emerging contemporary artist based in Accra, Ghana. Even though his art comes naturally, he developed his artistic skills gradually from his primary education, through middle school up to the advanced level at the Ghanatta College of Art and Design in Ghana. Graphic Design and painting were his areas of interest. The rich cultural heritage of his people can be described as a clear manifestation of his art. His work portrays his innermost feelings and activities within his surroundings. Armarh always loves to work with bright colors and rough brush strokes. He is the 2022 Visiting Fellow at the Noldor Residency.Go to artist page
Working alongside the annual artist resident, senior fellow and the two junior fellows, the visiting fellows are invited to establish their studios in a shared adjoining warehouse space within the institution’s enclave, accessible through a connecting bridge and topped by designated studio spaces. Selected exclusively as emerging artists living and working in Ghana and the ECOWAS region, visiting fellows can be offered up to 6 month to a year long access to Noldor’s spaces and artistic resources. An added benefit is that they are in close contact with the other inhabitants of the space, encouraged to challenge their visual language as they work on creating a full portfolio of work in an ambitious format.