ArtistPrince Twins Seven Seven (Nigerian, 1944 – 2011)
MediumInk and pigments on cutout plywood
DimensionsWork : 24 1/8 x 23 7/8 in. (61.28 x 60.64 cm)
Frame : 26 1/2 x 26 1/2 in. (67.31 x 67.31 cm)
Credit LinePurchased with funds bequeathed by Roberta VanGilder '53 Kaye
LabelTwins Seven-Seven was the adopted name of Taiwo Olaniyi Oyewale Aitoyeje, who chose his adopted name because he was the only surviving child from seven sets of twins born to his mother over a period of years. He later added the title Prince to his name after he discovered that he was descended from a Nigerian noble family. Twins Seven-Seven was one of the most notable artists to emerge from the Oshogbo Movement that sought to create a new, modern school of Yoruba art in Nigeria during the 1960s and 70s. He won national and international acclaim for his densely patterned images of fantastical creatures inspired by traditional Yoruba myths and folklore. This painting may have been influenced by Amos Tutuola’s 1954 novel My Life in the Bush of Ghosts, which is full of stories about ghosts and spirits drawn from Yoruba oral traditions. The painting does not correspond exactly to a specific story in the novel, but the psychedelic imagery effectively captures the book’s spirit.
Academic ThemesLiterary Connections