'Agbogho II' (variant) clay and burlap 92 x 143cm (36 1/4 x 56 5/16in). in three pieces (3)
A former student of El Anatsui, Nnenna Okore's art is similarly inspired by the use of discarded and found objects in rural areas of her native Nigeria. Her work often employs ordinary media like magazines and newspaper, which are disposed of in her current home the United States, but are considered usable commodities in her native Nigeria. By re-imagining everyday waste, as well as natural materials, Nnenna's works consistently challenges environmental neglect, consumerism and globalisation. Her work, by virtue of these influences, celebrates the transformation of discarded materials into cultural objects, forms, and spaces and brings a critical focus to bear on the consumption and recycling cultures in parts of Nigeria.
Her materials include newspapers, wax, cloth, rope, clay and sticks and she applies various repetitive and labour-intensive techniques, like weaving, twisting, sewing, dyeing, waxing and rolling, which were learned by watching villagers perform everyday tasks. These processes accentuate colors, textures and other visceral qualities of her sculptures. This revitalisation, rehabilitation, and transformation of materials, makes Nnenna one of her generation's most exciting and innovative artists working within the genre of urban recyclia.