NM
New Museum
New York
Medium
Image rights
Courtesy the artist, David Zwirner, New York/London, and Contemporary Fine Arts, Berlin. ©Chris Ofili

Turner Prize-winning Young British Artist (YBA) Chris Ofili draws inspiration from an eclectic array of popular, artistic, and religious sources, from the Bible and William Blake to blaxploitation films, hip hop, and his Nigerian heritage. His large-scale paintings—combining rippling dots of paint, drifts of glitter, collaged images, and most famously, elephant dung—work together in the service of a complex narrative about African culture, black stereotypes, history, and exoticism. His well-known and highly controversial work The Holy Virgin Mary (1996) comprised oil paint, glitter, polyester resin, and paper collage and depicted a black Madonna surrounded by images of female genitalia extracted from pornographic magazines, and lumps of dung. In 1999, New York City mayor Rudolph Giuliani had the work removed from the "Sensation" exhibition at the Brooklyn Museum of Art. Ofili's later work adopts simpler, more pared-down forms with similar themes.

High auction record
£2.9m, Christie's, 2015
Blue chip
Represented by internationally recognized galleries.
Collected by major museums
Tate, Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA)
Selected exhibitions
2019
Drawn Together AgainThe FLAG Art Foundation
2017
Chris OfiliICA Miami
2014
Chris Ofili: Night and DayNew Museum
View all

Pimpin' ain't easy, 1997

Oil, polyester resin, paper collage, glitter, map pins, and elephant dung on linen
96 × 72 in
243.8 × 182.9 cm
Location
New York
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NM
New Museum
New York
Medium
Image rights
Courtesy the artist, David Zwirner, New York/London, and Contemporary Fine Arts, Berlin. ©Chris Ofili

Turner Prize-winning Young British Artist (YBA) Chris Ofili draws inspiration from an eclectic array of popular, artistic, and religious sources, from the Bible and William Blake to blaxploitation films, hip hop, and his Nigerian heritage. His large-scale paintings—combining rippling dots of paint, drifts of glitter, collaged images, and most famously, elephant dung—work together in the service of a complex narrative about African culture, black stereotypes, history, and exoticism. His well-known and highly controversial work The Holy Virgin Mary (1996) comprised oil paint, glitter, polyester resin, and paper collage and depicted a black Madonna surrounded by images of female genitalia extracted from pornographic magazines, and lumps of dung. In 1999, New York City mayor Rudolph Giuliani had the work removed from the "Sensation" exhibition at the Brooklyn Museum of Art. Ofili's later work adopts simpler, more pared-down forms with similar themes.

High auction record
£2.9m, Christie's, 2015
Blue chip
Represented by internationally recognized galleries.
Collected by major museums
Tate, Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA)
Selected exhibitions (3)

Series by this artist

Other works by Chris Ofili
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