Francis Annan Affotey paints in a number of styles, some of which could be said to reflect pointillistic, cubistic, or abstract modalities. Often starting with scenes deriving from his native West Africa, Affotey reshapes these observations with modified techniques that re-contextualize the European lineages from which these same techniques have emerged. The landscape, the still-life, and the portrait are just three of the modes Affotey engages.
Working mainly with acrylic paint, the pictures he creates feel freshly made, as though Affotey was rediscovering a bygone tradition. In Polychromatic Elephant (2014), Affotey is working with what seems to be a pointillistic mode. And yet, as even a cursory examination makes apparent, the mechanics of pointillism are absent in this work. Instead, pixelations of paint, like confetti, seem to fall around the elephant and obscure it. In this manner, the painting becomes a commentary on objectification and visibility generally. What might seem purely celebratory, given the painting’s brightly-colored pallette, is actually a glimpse into what might be too often overlooked or unseen.