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Toyin Ojih Odutola



The Treatment, 2015  builds on Ojih Odutola’s investigation of the limits of the line. For this series, the artist culls images from an array of references, including the art world, pop culture, and politics. Translated into graphic black and white portraits, the subjects take on an uncanny uniformity, denying their individuality and therefore their explicit recognizability. Here, the most detailed marks are concentrated in the faces, while the hair and clothing are left unfinished. The sources are intentionally not named, leaving the viewer to contemplate not only the elusive nature of the subject, but the motivations behind interpretation and the desire to project values onto an image. By complicating the line’s ability to delineate identity, Ojih Odutola’s portraits resist categorization.