Aboudia’s vast paintings convey a strident visual universe made of disparate fragments.
In 2011 the young artist from the Ivory Coast was forced to take refuge in an underground studio due to the sudden escalation of violence that followed electoral chaos in the city of Abidjan. The images born out of this experience are recorded in the work entitled Daloa 29, where a multitude of characters display menacing weapons.
In Le Couloir de la Mort, a gloomy scene is set with a sinister army of crude child faced figures, contrasting sharply with the impermanence of shadowy, oversized skulls which seem to hover over a background as dark and chilling as a cave.
From the more recent high pitch paintings composed of contrasted faces, erotic undertones and collaged newspaper cuttings emerges a new palimpsest that evokes urban life in the West African city.
Cars and skyscrapers, working TV sets, pasted photographs of traditional African sculptures and written sentences reminiscent of street art deliver a visual symphony whose beat is the rhythm of contemporary urban life. The rich synthesis of various painting traditions such as North American Pop and Abstract Expressionism sit comfortably next to graffiti on mural size canvases that fervently demand the viewer’s attention.
Text © Gabriela Salgado