Lynette Yiadom-Boakye

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Lynette Yiadom-Boakye
Born 1977
London, United Kingdom
Nationality British
Education Central St. Martins, Falmouth University, Royal Academy of Art
Known for Painting
Awards Pinchuk Foundation Future Generation Prize

Lynette Yiadom-Boakye (born 1977, London, UK)[1] is an artist and writer of Ghanaian descent based in London. She is represented by the Corvi-Mora Gallery in London and by the Jack Shainman Gallery[2] in New York City.

Background and Education[edit]

Lynette Yiadom-Boakye's parents were both originally from Ghana. After arriving in the UK, her parents worked as nurses for the NHS. Yiadom-Boakye completed a foundation course at Central St Martins,[3] graduated from Falmouth University in 2000, and completed an MA at the Royal Academy Schools in 2003.[1]

Art and Awards[edit]


Her paintings are predominantly figurative with raw and muted colours. With her expressive representations of the human figure, the artist examines the formal mechanisms of the medium of painting and reveals political and psychological dimensions in her works, which focus on fictional characters who exist beyond our world in a different time and in an unknown location.[4] She paints figures that are intentionally removed from time and place, stating "People ask me, ‘Who are they, where are they?...What they should be asking is ‘What are they? "[5] Her work is included in the permanent collections of a number of institutions, including the Tate Collection, London, the Victoria and Albert Museum, the Miami Art Museum, the Studio Museum in Harlem, the Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, Nasher Museum of Art, The Museum of Modern Art, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the National Museum of African Art, Museum of Modern Art Warsaw. Her most recent exhibition was at London's Serpentine Sackler Gallery in 2015.[6]

Her work is currently on exhibit at the New Museum of Contemporary Art in New York City. The show, entitled "Under-Song For A Cipher", began in May 2017 and will continue until September 3, 2017.[7] The show was profiled by Zadie Smith for The New Yorker in its June 19, 2017, issue.[8]


In 2006, Yiadom-Boakye won The Arts Foundation Fellowship for Painting. In 2012, she won the Pinchuk Foundation Future Generation Prize, and in 2013 Yiadom-Boakye was shortlisted for the Turner Prize[1] for her 2012 exhibition[9] at Chisenhale Gallery in East London.


Individual Exhibitions

Group Exhibitions

  • MIRRORCITY, Hayward Gallery, London (2014-5)
  • Encyclopedic Palace at the 55th International Art Exhibition, La Biennale di Venezia (2013)
  • Ungovernables: 2012 New Museum Triennial, New Museum, New York (2012)
  • 11th Lyon Biennial of Contemporary Art, Lyon, France (2012)


  1. ^ a b c Wright, Karen (8 November 2013). "In the studio: Lynette Yiadom-Boakye, painter". The Independent. Retrieved 2013-12-30. 
  2. ^ "Lynette Yiadom-Boakye - Jack Shainman Gallery". Retrieved 2016-03-05. 
  3. ^ Cooke, Rachel (2015-05-31). "Lynette Yiadom-Boakye: artist in search of the mystery figure". The Guardian. ISSN 0261-3077. Retrieved 2016-03-05. 
  4. ^ "Haus der Kunst - Detail". Retrieved 2017-03-11. 
  5. ^ "Galleries - Interview Magazine". Retrieved 2016-03-05. 
  6. ^ "Lynette Yiadom-Boakye: Verses After Dusk". Serpentine Galleries. Retrieved 2016-03-05. 
  7. ^ a b "Lynette Yiadom-Boakye: Under-Song For A Cipher". Retrieved 2017-06-20. 
  8. ^ Smith, Zadie. "Lynette Yiadom-Boakye’s Imaginary Portraits". The New Yorker. Retrieved 20 June 2017. 
  9. ^ Extracts and Verses
  10. ^ "A Passion To A Principle • Kunsthalle Basel". Kunsthalle Basel. Retrieved 2017-03-11. 
  11. ^ "Lynette Yiadom-Boakye in conversation with Hans Ulrich Obrist (1 June 2015)", Serpentine UK.
  12. ^ John Moores 23 - Exhibitors gallery, ordered by artists' surname, selection A-C, Retrieved 2014-09-19.

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]