‘Jide Aje (Gee-day) (Ah-jay) Painter
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Like many artists ‘Jide is struggling to make ends meet.
‘Jide was born in the United States but spent his youth in the West African country of Nigeria. He earned a Bachelors of Fine Art degree (painting major) from the University of Ife at Ile-Ife, Nigeria before returning to the U.S in 1989 to pursue a career in the creative design field.
From 2000 through 2007, ‘Jide was employed in the auto industry doing Computer Aided Design and clay modeling work. Like many specialists in the automobile industry, he was laid off in the economic downturn. Unemployment provided the opportunity for ‘Jide to commit to a full-time painting practice. He produced more work and promoted his art through networking and gallery shows. ‘Jide has a strong following and his work is in private and corporate collections.
‘Jide’s paintings are influenced by his life in West Africa. “My work is inspired by a wide variety of themes and influences. I use African iconography, especially West African decorative motifs, as the jumping off point. Sometimes I incorporate traditional color schemes as well. Working from the viewpoint that culture is dynamic, I attempt to rework the symbols to fit a modern context.”