Mudam Galleries, Luxembourg, Luxembourg
01 Apr 2022 - 05 Sep 2022
Fly In League With The Night presents 67 paintings spanning two decades of work by the British artist Lynette Yiadom-Boakye (b. 1977, London). A painter and a writer, Yiadom-Boakye is celebrated for her enigmatic oil paintings of fictitious people.
Lynette Yiadom-Boakye makes figurative paintings drawn from a variety of source material. Her figures inhabit deliberately enigmatic settings that are timeless and often abstract. Working in oil paint on canvas or coarse linen, she has developed a language of painting that is uniquely her own.
The figures in Yiadom-Boakye’s paintings feel both familiar and mysterious. Each of her works is created from a composite archive of found images and her own imagination, raising questions of identity and representation. Her paintings are created in spontaneous and instinctive bursts, revealing expressive, short brushstrokes and a distinctive palette of dark, dramatic tones contrasted with flashes of brightness. By stripping away the signifiers of any particular era, her figures seem to exist outside of a specific time or place, inviting viewers to project their own narratives, memories and interpretations. This major exhibition surveys the development of Yiadom-Boakye’s unique formal language from 2003 to the present day.
Fly In League With The Night is the first exhibition to celebrate Yiadom-Boakye’s work in depth. It spans work that she made as a student at London’s Royal Academy Schools up to her most recent paintings made in 2020 during the coronavirus pandemic. Yiadom-Boakye has been closely involved in the selection and arrangement of her work. The exhibition evolves according to the dynamics and conversations between paintings, without a strict chronology.
Writing is central to Yiadom-Boakye’s artistic practice, as she has explained: “I write about the things I can’t paint and paint the things I can’t write about.” Her paintings are coupled with poetic, seemingly unrelated titles, and the exhibition is titled after a poem written especially for this occasion.