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Ghanaian artist Amoako Boafo among 2021 members of Time100 Next list

Ghanaian artist Amoako Boafo
Ghanaian artist Amoako Boafo

Ghanaian artist Amoako Boafo has been named among the 2021 members on the Time100 Next list of most influential people.

A tribute written by TIME magazine describes the 36-year-old Boafo as a rising art-world superstar for his work which is characterized by bright colours and textured finger painting.

The Time100 Next, an annual list that serves as an extension to the Time100 list, aims to highlight "the 100 individuals who are shaping the future of their fields and defining the next generation of leadership in business, entertainment, health and science, sports, activism, and more."

Read the entire tribute below;

Amoako Boafo is a rising art-world superstar. The 36-year-old Ghanaian artist’s work, characterized by bright colours and textured finger painting, highlights Black identity and the African diaspora with complexity and warmth: in the 2020 painting The Pink Background, for example, two men lean into each other as if posing for a photo, both clad in suits and standing before a rose-coloured backdrop. This distinctive style has made him one of the world’s most in-demand artists and won raves from Kehinde Wiley and Kim Jones, the artistic director of Dior Men, who launched a collaboration with him in 2020, making Boafo the first African artist to develop a line with the French fashion house. Perhaps just as significant is Boafo’s staunch unwillingness to being exploited by white collectors now hungry for Black creativity. Amid Boafo’s meteoric rise, his work has often been “flipped,” or resold quickly at a much higher price—a practice that can prevent artists from profiting from the huge windfalls of secondary sales. In response, the artist has fought to establish more control over his work, both by buying it back and through creating a studio for local creatives in Accra. As a result, Boafo has sparked a larger dialogue about who really profits when Black art is handled by white gatekeepers. —Cady Lang