Michelle Okpare


Stop Staring at My Big Cloth, 2021
Crêpe paper, acrylic & lace fabric on canvas

Image courtesy African Artists Foundation, Nigeria
“Okpare uses a mixture of folded crêpe paper, acrylic paint and lace appliqué to create highly stylised scenes that unpack the unrealistic beauty standards placed on women. The crêpe paper is folded into flower motifs inspired by Okpare's upbringing in Ivory Coast where she first experimented with these materials. Mirrors feature in each of her works as a dual symbol of vanity that is often projected onto women and painful awareness of one's body,” as per the curatorial statement for the exhibition, Unusual Suspects, curated by Jana Terblanche and Princess Ayoola. The exhibition was staged in Nigeria by the African Artists Foundation.