Chris Ofili is a Nigerian British artist who emerged as one of the most influential members of the Young British Artists (YBAs) group. He was one of the few African/Caribbean artists to break through as a member of the YBAs and won the Turner Prize in 1998. Ofili’s work utilises elements of high art and popular culture to examine the historical and cultural black experience. He works with a bright palette in a variety of textures and is notable for his use of elephant dung, a practice which has frequently created controversy. For Chris Ofili, the use of dung is a way of literally and psychologically linking his paintings to the earth. When used in his work, Ofili attaches lumps of dung directly to the canvas. On the topic of this application he said: “somehow it makes the painting feel more relaxed, instead of being pinned upon the wall like it’s being crucified.” Chris Ofili’s signature figurative works are rendered through the build-up of layers of paint and collaged materials including glitter, magazine, cut-outs and resin.
Born 1968, Manchester. Based in Trinidad and Tobago.