Artwork of the Day: Village Groove, Safori
Safori’s rise as a multi-media artist has reached heights he never attained even in earlier years as Ghana’s national pole-vault champion.
A native of Akropong-Akuapem in the West African country’s mountainous eastern region, Safori arrived in the U.S. in 1990 to study architecture at Howard University in Washington, DC. After moving to San Francisco, he took up painting as a hobby. Right from the start, his work proved popular with collectors. With his first show at Nordstrom, where Safori was employed, he found that his paintings were moving as quickly as he could produce them. “Within two weeks, every piece was sold,” he said. He soon resigned from Nordstrom and has been using his gifts in the full-time pursuit of art.
A self-taught artist, Safori uses a wide range of media to explore a variety of themes and styles. Many of his images center around family life and his affinity for for jazz music and African sculpture. Sticking to an intense and focused work regimen, Safori treats art as an all-consuming, life pursuit. “If you do it in the right spirit, you’ll never be disappointed,” explained Safori.
Since moving back to Silver Spring, Maryland, Safori has worked prolifically, completing 300 sketches and paintings in a year.
The process is intense but it’s flowing…for me, it’s never a struggle to create art, my style is constantly changing, never the same which gives me the freedom to explore new ideas that have never been done before in the art world.
Safori’s reputation has continued to grow; accolades have come from critics, collectors and academics, as well as commissions from corporations to produce original art for corporate offices around the world. Among those own Safori’s work is Dr. David C. Driskell, Professor of Art Emeritus at the University of Maryland and curator for the Bill and Camille Cosby collection. ”Safori is the artist to look out for,” Driskell says.
Visit Safori at Artexpo New York 2001 at booth # 940 on the Main Floor, and find out more about his art at his website, houseofsafori.com.