Afromysterics is the mystery of the African thought pattern.
It was sometime in 2011 that I was introduced to Laolu Senbanjo’s work in Abuja. It was at one of the European embassies, I think. I remember walking around the space like a little child, tugging at my friend’s arm when I found yet another detail seemingly hidden among the swirls of charcoal and colour. That was what intrigued me the most, how could he possibly fit in all those details and yet create a cohesive picture?
And then when I met the man himself, I approached with apprehension. I’d already been told he was a lawyer; so I was expecting a brooding man, maybe too involved in the overwhelming muses in his head to suffer curious fans. Well, by now you know that wasn’t what I got. He’s a cheerful man with so much art to give the world. I’ve seen him evolve in his expressions: from the art to the music to the acting. He’s a national treasure.
I see art as an experience. You let people go into it and have their own experience.
This post is focusing on his art, but he acts in Assorted Meat, and his band based in Brooklyn is called Laolu and the Afromysterics. One of his songs was featured in our Nigerian Alternative Playlist.
My Art is called, Afromysterics, a term I coined in 2007, which means, the mystery of the African thought pattern. It transcends Art mediums and is also the expression of these thoughts and mysteries into music, vocals, and sounds. All of my work is heavily influenced by my Yoruba heritage and often related to the environment I find myself in. I love to travel so you will often see my travels reflected in my work. I am a passionate activist and you will notice how most of my work have social justice ideology woven throughout. Also, you will notice feminism, women and children are often present and common themes in my work, this is because of my work as Human Rights Lawyer I was impacted by the strength girls and women have shown me. I weave stories throughout the lines and patterns in my works. I am a self-taught Visual Artist and Musician. My preferred medium is charcoal, although I do use others as well. I often create Art based on the songs that I write and vice-versa.
Quite honestly, I think his work should be viewed with a microscope in hand. it’ll be so easy to miss the mini stories going on behind the bigger picture. So vibrant!
(An Afromysterics Poster)
(Here is an interesting interpretation of his work, Gift & Curse by three different people.)
Laolu also does murals and guitar art..