By John Owoo
(In Accra – Ghana)
Master colorist Larry Otoo’s use of colors with different tints, tones and shades alongside transitory effects of natural light, appear in sync with the narratives that accompany his iconic and musically themed paintings.
Indeed, his works, which are currently on display at the Artist Alliance Gallery in Accra, show him as a master technician with a mission to capture and express the delights, victories, joys and moods alongside his frustrations, which are presented in colours with fleeting effects of natural light.
Undeniably, his color palettes are soft and tend to radiate – while expressing deep and innate feelings from his observation of activities around him – thereby providing an intimate feel to art collectors, critics and viewers alike.
Vivid plugs of acrylic satiate his canvasses – some of which are large – while vibrant tones alongside exaggerated eyes and agitated brush strokes syndicate to form astounding African scenes, which are quite vibrant and leave an impressive impact on viewers.
Working largely with three primary colors – red, yellow and blue, which he applies mostly without shades or mixtures thereby terminating in diverse scenes and extraordinary portraits of women as well as dejection and adversity.
His themes include traditional groups of drummers, dancers, markets and crowds with musical subjects providing joy and hope while transforming them into abstract rhythms that invoke jazz, which is becoming more and more popular in Ghana.
Otoo, who is widely collected over the globe, has exhibited in Ivory Coast, Nigeria, The Netherlands, United Kingdom, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Denmark, Spain, Canada, United States, Japan and various venues in Ghana.
Curated by the Ghanaian artist / academic Dr. Sela Kodjo Adjei and British art historian / critic Asana Greenstreet, the exhibition ends on Monday December 26, 2022.