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Founded in 1979, October Gallery, in central London, exhibits innovative, contemporary art from around the world. For over 40 years, October Gallery has pioneered the development of the Transvangarde - the trans-cultural avant-garde.


Nnenna Okore

Born in 1975 in Australia, raised mainly in Nsukka, Nigeria. Lives and works in Nigeria and Chicago, USA.

Nnenna Okore has emerged as one of the foremost artists of her generation. Working internationally, her largely abstract works are inspired by the textures, colours and landscapes of her local environment. She relies on the use of everyday found objects, which she repurposes, transforming them into intricate sculptural installations using repetitive and labour-intensive techniques such as weaving, twisting, sewing, dyeing, waxing and rolling. Her works explore the exquisite qualities of detailed surfaces and the surprisingly dramatic exuberance of organic formations.

Okore is Professor in the Art Department at North Park University, Chicago, USA. She earned her honours degree in painting from the University of Nigeria in 1999 and possesses an M.A. and M.F.A. in sculpture from the University of Iowa, USA. She has exhibited worldwide and has received several national and international awards, including being the 2012/2013 recipient of the Fulbright Scholarship, which resulted in Okore undertaking a year-long project in Nigeria.


Ụkwa Ruo Oge Ya Ọ Daa - There’s a time for everything
Ulukububa - Infinite Flow
Angaza Afrika - African Art Now


Things that meet the eye

Here and Now


Ethereal Beauty

Ihe Di Ife

Deeply Rooted

On the Long Run

Everything Good shall Come to Pass

Beneath the Surface

Aged Newness
Ashioke Series, Variation VII

Never Hurry the Sunrise

Would We Ever know?

Nnenna Okore Biography

2005    M.F.A Sculpture, Universityof Iowa, USA
2004    M.A Sculpture, University of Iowa, USA
1999    B.A Painting, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria
Selected solo exhibitions
2017   U. kwa Ruo Oge Ya ODaa - There’s a time for everything, October Gallery, London, U
Ùtútù, Mattatuck Museum, Connecticut, USA
Nnenna Okore: Osimili, Jenkins Johnson Gallery, San Francisco, USA
Anima, CSPS, Legion Art Galleries, Iowa, USA
2016   Rotunda Projects: Nnenna Okore, Memphis Brooks Museum of Art, Tennessee, USA
When all is said and done, Monique Meloche Gallery, Chicago, USA
2015   Nnenna Okore: Owu, Arrowhead Gallery, Waubonsee Community College, Illinois, USA
Nkata: An Installation by Nnenna Okore, Krannert Art Museum, Illinois, USA
On the Brink: New Work by Nnenna Okore, Elmhurst Art Museum, Illinois, USA
2014   Twist and Turns, David Krut Projects, New York, USA
Nnenna Okore: Fiber of Being and African Textiles, Welch School of Art and Gallery, Georgia State University, Atlanta, USA
Unfound, Beard Art Center Gallery, Indiana Wesleyan University, Indiana, USA
“Will you walk to the end of the earth with me”, Carlson Tower Gallery, North Park University, Chicago, USA
2013   Akaraka: What Will Be, Art Twenty One, Lagos, Nigeria
2012   Nnenna Okore: Transfiguration, Contemporary African Art Gallery, New York, USA
2011   Nnenna Okore: New Works, Herron School of Art and Design Gallery, Indiana University, Indianapolis, USA
Shokoloko, Craft Alliance, St. Louis, USA
Metamorphoses, October Gallery, London, UK
Torn Apart, David Krut Projects, New York, USA
Nnenna Okore: On the Edge, Dittmar Memorial Gallery, Northwestern University, Evanston, USA
Rush, Skidmore College Gallery, New York, USA
2010   Life After, Noyes Cultural Arts Center, Illinois, USA
Recovered Energies, Bekris Gallery, California, USA
Absurd Beauty, Northeastern Illinois University Gallery, Chicago, USA
2009   Strings and Patterns, Viberto University Gallery, Wisconsin, USA
Carl A. Fields Center for Equality Gallery, Princeton University, New Jersey, USA
Twisted Ambience, Chicago Cultural Center, Chicago, USA  
Common Thread, Bekris Gallery, California, USA
Of Earth…Bark and Topography, Goethe-Institut, Lagos, Nigeria
2008   Ulukububa - Infinite Flow, October Gallery, London, UK
Moonlight Tales, Tall Grass Association, Park Forest, Illinois, USA Affrika West, Oriel Mostyn Gallery, Llandudno, Wales, UK
2007    Reflection, Contemporary African Art Gallery, New York, US
Sub-consciousness, Adam Hall Gallery, Wheaton College, Illinois, USA
2006   Trans-figuration, Robert F. DeCaprio Art Gallery, Moraine Valley Community College, Illinois, USA Betwixt and Between, Carlson Tower Gallery, North Park University, Chicago, USA
2005    Paper to Paper, Armature Art Gallery, University of Iowa, Iowa, USA
2004   Accumulations, Arts Iowa City, Iowa, USA
2003    Re-presented, Armature Gallery, University of Iowa, Iowa, USA .
2002    Beyond the Lines, Didi Museum, Lagos, Nigeria.
2001    Metaphors, Alternative space, Lagos, Nigeria, Curator: Bisi Silver, London.
Selected group exhibitions
2017   Abstract Minded: Works by Six Contemporary African Artists, N’Namdi Center for Contemporary Art, Detroit, USA
The Enlighteners, Fondation Blachère Collection, Palais des Papes; Musée du Petit Palais; Musée Calvet and Musée Lapidaire, Avignon, France
Beyond Surface, Fashion Outlets of Chicago, Chicago, USA
When the Heavens Meet the Earth, The Heong Gallery, Cambridge, UK
Weather or Not, That is the Question, Children’s Museum of the Arts, New York, USA
2016   La Mère | La Mer, Moreau Art Galleries, St Mary’s College, Indiana, USA
Standing Out,
Temple Muse, Lagos, Nigeria Summertime…, Jenkins Johnson Gallery, San Francisco, USA
Art Dubai
, Dubai, UAE, with Sakshi Gallery, Dubai, UAE
Expo Chicago, Navy Pier, Chicago, with Jenkins Johnson Gallery, San Francisco, USA
Finding Shelter
: An Exhibition of Contemporary Fiber Art, Baum Gallery, University of Central Arkansas, Arkansas, USA
artMRKT San Francisco, San Francisco, USA
2015   Exceptional: Handmade Paper Beyond Substrate, Minnesota Center for Book Arts, Minnesota, USA
Works from Around Our State, Evanston Art Center, Illinois, USA
Africa Africans, Museu Afro Brasil, Sao Paulo, Brazil
Faculty Art Show, Brendel Library, North Park University, Chicago, USA
2014   Interwoven Histories, October Gallery, London, UK
Brides of Anansi: Fiber and Contemporary Art, Spelman Museum of Fine Art, Atlanta, USA
African Origins, Morton Fine Art, Washington, USA
Faculty Art Show, Brandel Library, North Park University, Chicago, USA
2013   Six Draughtsmen, Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Arts (MoCADA), New York, USA
Biennale internationale du lin de Portneuf, Quebec, Canada
no one belongs here more than you, Center for Contemporary Art, Lagos, Nigeria
, Bekris Gallery, San Francisco, USA
2012   Inside-Out, Outside-In, Visual Art Center Gallery, Mississippi State University, Mississippi, USA
We Face Forward, Manchester Art Gallery, Manchester, UK
(Re-) Cycles of Paradise,
LACE Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions, Los Angeles, USA
2011   Transcending Integration, Baltimore Clayworks, Maryland, USA
Environment and Object: Recent African Art, Tang Teaching Museum, Skidmore College, New York; Anderson Gallery, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, USA
2010   As It Is: Contemporary Art from Africa & the Diaspora, The Mojo Gallery, Dubai, UAE
Textiles, Fondation Blachère, Apt, France Scratch, Latit Kala Akademi, New Delhi; Sakshi Gallery, Mumbai, India
Art Dubai, Dubai, UAE, with October Gallery, London, UK
Joburg Art Fair, Johannesburg, South Africa, with October Gallery,
London, UK (Re-) Cycles of Paradise, UNCOP16, UN Climate Change Conference, Spanish Cultural Center, Mexico City, Mexico
29th Sao Paulo Biennial,
Sao Paulo, Brazil
2009   (Re-) Cycles of Paradise, UNCOP15, DGI-byen, Copenhagen, Denmark
Common Ground, Bekris Gallery, San Francisco, USA
In Progress
, Carlson Tower Gallery, North Park University, Chicago, USA
Art Dubai
, Dubai, UAE, with October Gallery, London, UK
Joburg Art Fair
, Johannesburg, South Africa, with October Gallery, London, UK
Trash Menagerie
, Peabody Essex Museum, Massachusetts, USA
Paper to Pulp, Howard County Center for the Arts, Maryland, USA
October Gallery, London, UK
Chance Encounters, Sakshi Gallery, Mumbai, India
Objects of A Revolution
, Galerie Dominique Fiat, Paris, France
Trace/Memory, Evanston Art Center, Evanston, USA
2008   Angaza Africa, October Gallery, London, UK
Affrika West, Artspace, Galeri Caernarfon, Caernafon, Wales
Channel4 Art Exhibition, Channel4/ Art4 Gallery, London, UK
Second Lives: Remixing the Ordinary, Museum of Arts and Design, New York City, USA
Refabrication, Carlson Tower Gallery, North Park University, Chicago, USA
Clay and Fiber
, Woman Made Gallery (WMG), Chicago, USA Joburg Art Fair, Johannesburg, South Africa, with October Gallery, London, UK Trading Spaces, Binghamton University, New York, USA
Moonlight Tales
, Tall Grass Arts Association, Illinois, USA
2006   African Contemporary Art Exhibition, Dak’Art - Biennale de l’Art Africain Contemporain, Dakar, Senegal
2005   Twelfth SOFA International Exposition, The Navy Pier, Chicago, USA
Faculty Show
, Carlson Tower Gallery, North Park University, Chicago, USA
8th International Open Exhibition, Woman Made Gallery (WMG), Chicago, USA
2003   Migrations, Legion Arts, CSPS Hall, Iowa, USA Units, Legion Arts, CSPS Hall, Iowa, USA
2002    New Works, Armature Gallery, University of Iowa, Iowa, USA
2001   New Energies, Nimbus Gallery; Mydrim Gallery, Lagos, Nigeria
1999   B.A. Exhibition, Ana Gallery, University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria
Selected awards
2012   Fulbright Scholar
2011   Teaching Fellowship, Skidmore College, New York, USA
2008    North Park University Project Grant, Chicago, USA
2007    UNESCO - Ashberg Fellowship for Artists, Gruber Jez Foundation, Mexico
2005   North Park University Project Grant, Chicago, USA
2002   Graduate Assistantship, University of Iowa, Iowa City, USA
Emma McAllister Novel Scholarship, University of Iowa, Iowa City, USA Teaching Assistantship, University of Iowa, Iowa City, USA
1999   Valedictorian (Fine Arts), University of Nigeria, Nsukka, Nigeria
1994   First prize, UNIFEM Women’s Art Contest, Lagos, Nigeria

First prize, UNICEF African Child’s Day Art Contest, Mbabane, Swaziland

Selected collections

World Bank, Washington D. C, USA Brooklyn Academy of Music,
New York, USA
United States Embassy, Abuja, Nigeria
Eko Hotel and Suites, Lagos, Nigeria Halls Winery, California, USA Newark Museum, New Jersey, USA Fondation Blachère, Apt, France Indianapolis Art Center, Indianapolis, USA
Royal Collection, Abu Dhabi, UAE Art House Contemporary,
Lagos, Nigeria Channel 4, London, UK Renaissance Capital, Moscow, Russia
Sina Jina Collection, London, UK

Selected bibliography
2001    The Real Values Beyond the Tags, by Okechukwu Uwaezuoke, The Comet
    New Energies, rebellion against the old, by Ozolua Uhakheme, The Guardian
    The Metaphors of Today, by Victor Ikwele, National Interest
2002    Plenty Art Shows, lean Patrons, by Chukka Nnabuife, The Guardian
2003    Chasing the Paper Trails with Vision, by Vidya Murthy, Daily Iowan
2005    8th International Open, Exhibition Announcement by Woman Made Gallery
2006   As Dak’art Beckons, by Ugochukwu Uwaerzuoke, This Day
    The Yam is King, by Obi Nwakama, Farafina Magazine, No. 7
2007   Mind Openers-Women Artist in Africa, by Barbara Murray, Farafina Magazine, No 8
    Nnenna Okore NY Exhibition, by Slvester Ogbechie, AACHRONYM, October 31
2008   Using Old Materials to Put a New Face on the Museum, by Roberta Smith, New York Times, September 26, 2008.
    Introduction: Ulukububa-Infinite Flow, by Polly Savage, Exhibition Catalogue, London, Oct 16-Dec 6, 2008,
2009   Ulukububa: Infinite Flow, by Bunmi Akpata-Ohohe, Africa Today, December 3, 2008
    Studio Visit with Nnenna Okore: Art from Discarded and Found Things, by Molara Wood, Next, February 08, 2009.
    Artist to Watch: Nnenna Okore, by Katy Donoghue, Whitewall Magazine, Spring Issue, 2009.
    Art of Africa, by Simon de Burton, The  Financial Times, March 28, 2009.
    African Art At Bonhams by Julian Roup, Bonhams Headlines, March 2009.
    Groundbreaking African Artists In Spotlight At First British Auction Of Contemporary
    Okore, Enwonwu, Onabrakpeya, Anatsui, Kentridge others in London's art auction, by Chuka Nnabuife and Emmanuel Agozino, Nigerian Compass, April 7, 2009.

October Gallery, 24 Old Gloucester Street, Bloomsbury, London WC1N 3AL Tel: + 44 (0)20 7242 7367