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Jide Ojo


Forged from an Urban Landscape, written in large letters above the doorway of the backyard Brooklyn studio where artist Jide Ojo works is a bit of verse from the ancient Roman poet Horace, rendered in its original Latin. A well-known translation goes, "Life grants no boon to man without much toil," and this is as good an explanation as any for the intensity we see in the works of art created behind the studio’s doors and on the surrounding grounds.

Ojo creates works both large and small that are forged from bits and pieces of the urban landscape. He forms, out of glass, plastic, and other materials, works that are intensely labored without seeming laborious. Indeed, one remarkable quality that emerges from the studio is how the intensity that went into creating this art is realized as objects of beauty.

Another is, paradoxically, how much these works almost believe the physical effort that went into them. This art is both a reflection of the manufactured urbanscape and a meditation on the natural landscape. Ojo explains that the work is "just an introduction to what is already there." One can see this in the way material that suggests an object in the natural world, such as a leaf, becomes a work of art that is both close to nature in appearance while foregrounding its status as the product of the artist’s human sensibility.

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