Just over a decade ago, Chris Ofili contributed to a fascinating show at the National Gallery in London called Metamorphosis: Titian. It provoked from him a remarkable sequence of seven paintings, in which he seemed as liberated by reading their source material – Ovid’s ancient mythological poem Metamorphosis – as he was by the Renaissance paintings.
It was one of those moments where you could see an artist reaching new heights, as Ofili found in classical literature a fresh means of synthesising his poetic and sensual renderings of figures, his art historical erudition, and the light and heat of Trinidad, where he’s now lived for the best part of 20 years.
Image: Chris Ofili, The Great Beauty, 2020-2023
Oil and charcoal on linen
200 x 310 cm, 78 3/4 x 122 in
© Chris Ofili
Courtesy the artist and Victoria Miro