Damola Ayegbayo

Nigerian, 1988

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Damola Ayegbayo is an expressionist artist from Osun state. Inspired by his late grandfather, a painter, sculptor, and ceramist, he was instilled with a love for art at a young age. This love grew as he met likeminded individuals at university, when visiting galleries, or traveling to ancient cities. The artist obtained his Bachelor’s in education from Obafemi Awolowo University Ile Ife, at the Department of Fine and Applied Arts where he specialized in painting.

His captivating portraits convey the power and beauty of black African women. They illustrate the realities of life through bursts of colour integrated in the beautiful faces of women of colour. The artist named this painting style ÀBÈFÉ meaning 'pleaded to be loved' which is his native name. 

Ayegbayo uses his portraits to convey a message about morals, love, and unity. The image of a beautiful black woman is a reference to his mother and the other women who played a significant role in his upbringing and process of self-discovery. 

Ayegbayo's paintings have been featured at numerous international exhibitions and are part of private collections in Canada, Australia, England, London, Poland, United States, Norway, Washington, and Lagos, among others.