African Abstract Art: A Creative African Mask Art Collection
Art Series Title: "Katok Gods"
African culture is vast and still so much of it is unexplored unlike European and Asian cultures. I begin the series to be a visual reflection of the African gods and African tribal masks.
Growing up as a child in Haiti, I would see tribal masks all the time, but didn't know really what they meant until much later. The African tribal masks series is symbolic of mystery, beauty, mystics, and to culture.
Medium: Ink Pen on Bristol Board Paper
"The tribes may vary, but The tribes are still one."
12 of 100 African Mask Artworks
Abstract African Mask Art
The first four mask drawings were the beginning stage of the experiment I was conducting creatively. I view every artwork that I create as an experiment. I believe every artwork I create is a successful work simply because I completed them.
This is a collection of African mask drawings inspired by African tribal art. African masks are magical and one of the most powerful symbol of ancient African ancestors. Are you looking for African masks and African line art for inspiration? These artworks are part of an art series created to represent a contemporary approach to traditional African mask art.
There is something magical about any tribal mask you encounter as a viewer. Masks are mostly always a symbolic representation of something mystical for many cultures.
The African tribal masks you will see on this page were created to be magical and rich for the culture of Africa.
The Purpose Of My Art
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. As the beholder of the artwork that I create I also shoot to produce something people will be drawn to and find luring. Although, I am constantly working on art and pushing the envelope on what I am capable of doing visually I always want to create beautiful art. Along with the goal of creating something that is a representation of beauty.
Some artist find it hard to complete art because they get frustrated with the process and the process should not be that difficult it should flow naturally. So, whenever I start a project or a drawing or painting my goal is to complete it. I get to a point where I think the artwork is done and I call it done. I don't over analyze or over think about what I could change or what I should change.
Because there is already an abundance of thoughts and creative ideas flowing in my mind that I just want to get out of my head. If I was to get caught up in perfecting one art piece I would never create the amount of drawings or artwork that I do. I would most likely be stuck on one artwork. In a way it's like having writers block as an artist if you are unable to complete one piece of art before moving on to the next.
African Tribal Masks: Their Representation
In some African countries the mask represents their ancestors who founded their village. Others believe the masks represent African gods. My belief is that the masks represent angels. Not all angels are said to look like us, like humans. Some look like animals and others look like what we would call monsters. Regardless I find it fascinating how deep the history and power masks represent.
African gods are not as popularized as the Greek and Roman gods. However they do exist. For certain African countries and cultures they believe they had gods of the elements like fire, water and so on.
My goal is to create 100 of these masks. Maybe once I reach that many drawings I will host an exhibition to showcase the mask in a gallery environment. All of the masks so far are drawn on a 9 x 12" Bristol board paper. The medium which are used to create the drawings is a Faber-Castell fine tip in brush pen. Since I started drawing and upon me first discovering these pens I created a lot of art in pencil.
Today, if I plan to draw anything with a traditional medium preferably it is going to be with an ink pen on paper. I grew up practicing a lot with lead pencils. Over the years I got away from drawing with pencil because I thought trying with ink pens and creating digital art was a quicker way to bring all of these ideas that I have in mind out. There was also this pet-peeve of erasing that came to bother me for a while.
Once in a while I will still use pencils to sketch in m
y drawing journals quick thumbnail drawings. I will also use the pencil to softly outline certain elements and the art composition that I create.
Every artwork has a purpose. Art without a purpose is not art. Artist who created and artwork put the emotion into it. I am starting to understand more and more how important the process of creating is. When you take time to reflect on what you are creating it even pushes you to develop yourself in the process.
Art changes the world. You can look at it from the aspect of advertisement, propaganda, and branding. All three of these things mostly always include art. Companies pay a lot of money for their advertising and marketing. Without great visual aesthetics these two things would fail. So yes art change the world.
Pablo Picasso who I referred to earlier is considered to have impacted the art world the most during and after his lifetime. His work did not only influence and inspire other artist, but his style also is attributed to have influence the Art Deco period. Picasso also influenced industries from fashion to architecture this signature style of cubism innovated art direction. Truly, this should be a goal of every ambitious artist.
Who found inspiration from African tribal art?
Did you know that Pablo Picasso was inspired by African tribal art? His signature style abstract art which evolved to cubism sparks from an encounter he had after seeing a collection of African mask. In the later part of his life as he was drawing near 60 to 70 years old he started creating ceramic art inspired by African culture.
Picasso created his own versions of African mask and ceramic form which are collected throughout the world today. If you look at the curvature of the nose or lips and eyes in some of his artwork you can sort of distinguish these inspirations. There must have been something magical about his encounter with the African mask that he saw the spark this creative direction in him.
Jean-Michel Basquiat was another artist I found out was inspired by African culture and found a fascination with African mask as well. Similar to me he was of Haitian descent. His father was Haitian and his mother was Dominican. He is one the most famed for the art movement of neo-expressionism. Another sub-genre in art was created in the 80s by him.
Contemporary forms of art had already multiple genres developed, but obviously there was still room for the birth of another style which he became wildly known for. Basquiat did not create a lot of art inspired by his Haitian background, but he does have two signature pieces where his interest in Haitian tradition is seen.