Cliff House by the Sea

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T’was not the cool summer breeze that snuck up on me

Touched me tenderly

Filtering through my clothing

Tossing my hair to the obedience of the wind

No, it wasn’t

T’was not the calming sound of the rolling waves

Rocking back and forth

Lacing the ocean line with seashells, strange blue jelly fish and crabs astray

Not the kiss of the mid day sun

Shinning down with gentle warmth

Causing the sea to shimmer

A horizon with a silver lining

It looked like precious platinum

How could it be?

Lovely scenery, yes

The beauty of nature, magnificence

Bringing with it with it, peace and serenity

Not even that…..

T’was the presence of the one who made it complete

Holding hands, we strolled by the shore

We left our footprints in the sand

We let the water wash our feet

We made snapshots to define our bond

Watched by the cliff house by the beach

We waited to bid the sun good bye

It gently descended into the sea

And glazed the skies in a violet rage

It looked like the fire the burns between us

The wind became chilly

And we held each other through the scenic makeover

By the Cliff house by the sea

“Breeze Across Cliff House”, oil on canvas, 6″ x 6″, 2014  is at Studio Gallery SF, 1641 Pacific Avenue, San Francisco, CA, 94109, http://www.studiogallerysf.com

http://www.ninafabunmi.com

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Emotional

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Transition is very emotional. I think about all that I left behind to be here but what I have and what I hope to achieve, far outweighs it. I once walked on dusty streets without sidewalks and worried about the mosquitoes sucking blood from my children as they slept at night. How many times I had to patched those holes on the mosquitoes nets but they still found their way in. They even became immune to the insecticides that were supposed to eliminate them, they won the war and buzzed in our ears to remind us of their victory.

The heat due to lack of electricity, the wet pillows that we sought comfort from, drenched in our own midnight sweat. The next battle became the war against malaria.

My kitchen where I could not preserve my cooking, my food gone to rot, the refrigerator died due to power fluctuation. Rats crept under the metal door and continuously fed on our food storage competing with the cockroaches both big and small. I went to bed at night and lay beside a man I once called my husband, pretending to love him to avoid his fist yet thinking about the other man I once loved but could not be married to due to society’s disapproval. I craved for him silently accepting my loss and struggling to accept my lot.

I went to a job I had to, it frustrated me to be there but it provided for the family. I drove for one and a half hours through the madness of Lagos traffic to get there in the comfort of my four wheel drive,one of my proudest accomplishments. I remember the day I bought that SUV and tore the rubber off it, I sat in the drivers seat, clenching the steering wheel and sucking in the smell of my brand new ride. It saw me though that arduous journey to work, serenaded by the music of Celine Dione playing in my CD player. I worked hard to pay the bills, I frequently awoke at midnight to pursue the passion that kept me sane, I had to make art, I had to paint, I just kept painting. Sometimes, I’d stagger to work the next day still sleepy from the lack of sleep. Grateful for my cozy parking space and the cushioned seats in my jeep which became a haven to catch up on lost sleep. Leaving work, I would drop my managerial hat at the door and go home to continue in my role of mother and wife, one that sometimes gave me joy but also wore me out, I had to stay inspired, I had to keep on painting.

Staying true to my passion and holding on to my dreams, here I am now in San Francisco California. My art paved the way for me. I am walking on the sidewalks of tarred roads adorned with dog pup and pee, a sight I have gotten used to, never complaining due to my immigrant gratitude. Household pest and rodents now a thing of the past. There is electricity, I actually drink water from the tap, my food stays refrigerated and I only perspire when I go to the gym. The scars of the mosquito bites that once covered my children’s skin, now all faded away , drifting with the memories of the discomfort they once felt. I am painting to pay the bills now and I am working two jobs that I love. I read about my art in newspapers and magazines from authors I never knew. My paintings are being collected by art lovers whom I never had pervious affiliations with. I am constantly inspired to make art . I am motivated by this and yet another source…..

Emotional again with a heart full of thankfulness, I find myself loving again. I have taken a dive,I am deep in it, wearing my heart on my sleeves and shaking in my boots in the fear of a heartbreak. I constantly remember all that I have been through in the name of love. It has given me much happiness yet caused me so much sorrow that I gave up on it. So why am I doing this again. There are forces on earth that we cannot comprehend and this one is not on me. Greek mythology blames it on Cupid, I tend to agree. I am not in control, I got carried away by a weird winding wind that dropped me in his arms. It cast a spell on me and I am in a hypnotic state. I am in love but I am afraid. I am emotional.

Stranger

He looks in the mirror but he sees not himself, he sees the man inside him, the one he struggles to hide, the one that he denies, he sees himself but he knows not who he is. He is a ‘Stranger’.

In search of identity, in search of truth. We often ask ourselves who we are. We think we know but we know not. Our curiosity leads us down an unwinding path of self discovery.

Stripped down to the bone and still searching for our identity. Who are we? where did we come from? why are we here.

Who is black and who is white and all the inbetweens? Why is racial classification so deep rooted in society.

If we all strip off the flesh that clothes our bones, then are we all not the same. Then who does that make us?

What we are is beyond what we see, we need to confront the stranger within in order to begin the search for our true identity.SONY DSC

Le Fantasico

As a child , I remember watching those Brazillian festivals on TV. Their exotic, colorful and revealing costumes, well toned bodies, flashy and shiny make up and athletic performances that made their street festivals look so much fun. O! how I dream of Brazil. My parents travelled to Brazil and bought me this lovely spaghetti strapped dress. It had somany colors that it lit me up like a rainbow. I wore it till it became a skirt and I wore that skirt till it could fit me no more.

When I was twelve, I took part in the West Indies Festival in Lagos Nigeria. I was a Fire Bird, with a big bright orange head gear and fire feathers on my arms and my tails. We danced the streets, we showed off our colors, we wagged our tails as we made merry. I was having my own Brazillian Festival moment, one I would never forget.

Comming to America and learning so much more about the Trans Atlantic Slave Trade, I have learnt that a lot of kidnapped Africans were taken to Brazil and enslaved there. The Brazillian culture has subsequently been highly influenced by Africans. The music, the dancing, the food, the dressing and so much more. No wonder I loved those Brazillian festivals so much.

Living here in the San Francisco Bay Area, I have found a touch of Brazil. It reminds me of how they sang ‘Le Fantasico’ as they paraded the streets of Brazil.SONY DSC

NIETZCHE: We Are Not Of This World

I have always believed that we come from something much greater than ourselves. We are born, we live and then we die, probably to be reborn again, probably not. We will probably be a spirit floating through universes, wondering what our next life will be. There are somany unanswered questions about our existence.

This painting titled “Nietzche” is my interpretation of humans having superhuman qualities that removes us from this world even though live in it. The name comes from a German philospher, ‘Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche. He was also a cultural critic, poet and composer, known to embrace the idea of the world beyond.

I captured my subject in a way that gives him superhuman qualities. He is out of this world and represents an existence that is more than meets the eye.

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I guess that no matter who we are, our color, race, nationality or religion, it is the transcience of this life that’s our commonality. Though we are all in this world, we are not of it.

http://www.ninafabunmi.com

A Painting for a Leather Jacket

I love the city of San Francisco and am constantly inspired by its uniqueness. This is what drives me to paint Cityscapes , especially rainy day scenes. So I painted a street scene with “West Coast Leather” store in it. Is a 12×24 piece with lovely colors and on a rainy day.

I was walking by the store last week, just coming from the post office and decided to pop into West Coast Leather for the first time. I was amazed at their line of leather wear. The store smelt good, I have never seen so much leather all packed in one place.

I introduced myself to the owners Skip and Joe, two lovely gentlemen and told them about the painting. I then showed them a picture of it and they were amazed. They offered me a trade, “the painting for a leather jacket” , it was an offer I could not refuse.

I wear my leather jacket with pride. It’s a reminder of the skills I have and how it impacts lives. I thank God for making me an artist. The leather jacket makes that painting all the more interesting.

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Updates on Nina Fabunmi Fine Art

Nina Fabunmi Fine Art will like to send a sincere thank you message for your continuous patronage. Thank you all for being an integral part of my work and of my growth as an artist. Welcome to 2015, another exciting year to create art. I want to share the following with you.

ORIGINS CATALOGUE
My ‘Origins’ Catalogue for my 2nd solo exhibition which was in June 2014 is now available on my blog. Please visit http://ninartz.me or http://www.ninartz.me to view . You can also click on the link below to take you there
https://ninartz.files.wordpress.com/2015/01/nina-fabunmi_origins-catalogue.pdf

New Land, New Life, New People.
New Land, New Life, New People.

REBIRTH
I am currently preparing for my 3rd Solo Exhibition titled “Rebirth: New Land, New Life, New People” , it will Capture the San Francisco Bay Area and the Diversity of its People. The show will take place from March 6th to April 25th. I have attached the details and will still send out a notice closer to the exhibition date

AMERICAN ART COLLECTOR
I will be featured in the February Edition of the ‘ American Art Collector’ . This edition is specially devoted to Cityscapes. I feel really honored to have been contacted by the publishing team of one of the most renowed art magazines in America.

This year, I will like to focus more on Cityscapes as I am exploring the Bay area a little more. I will still do portraits and figures but more cityscapes.

Things are looking up and I am super excited to keep you all posted.

Thank you